submitted by Mary
I always see tips for paying bills that tell you to put all your bills in one place and pay them all on one day, and similar ideas. But no matter how hard I tried I always seemed to forget the day or the place, or they came at the wrong time, or were due before our pay went in, or were larger than anticipated.
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Since I couldn't afford an accountant, I thought I would see how much of the bill paying work could be done by the companies and my bank, instead of me!
1. Almost all our bills were able to be put on an equal payment plan. It helped that we had been keeping our payments current. This meant that we were able to budget the same amount every month for electricity, gas, water, cable, and internet.
2. Every company I called was willing to move the payment date to one that I knew would correspond to our pay deposits.
3. As a back-up, I spoke to the bank and arranged to get overdraft protection on the account our pay went into and all the bills came out of. No more horrendous overdraft bank fees!
4. Every company I called was able to set up direct billing (taking the payment directly from our account each month). This cut out the cost of stamps, envelopes and checks, and I still got a paper copy to let me know when they were coming out and the amount. As soon as I got that, I would mark it on the calendar to keep track. As a result, I can rest assured that our bills will always get paid on time, every month, and we will never be charged a late fee. Even if I am off sick or on holidays, they are taken care of!
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