Organizing Your Finances, Part 2
Your bills have all arrived for the month and they are due. Now what? Simplify paying as much as possible.
Most banks give you the option to pay your bills online. It is more efficient to pay all of your bills from your bank then it is to log into each vendor’s website, plus you only have one ID and Password to remember.
Some banks will allow you to receive an e-bill and pay it the balance automatically; a huge time saver! While it is imperative that you have enough money in your account to cover the payments it is a considerable time saver if you have an already very full schedule.
If auto e-bill paying isn’t for you, then you can still save time by negotiating a fixed payment where possible. For instance, most utilities offer a budget payment whereby they average your account over the past 12 months and create a fixed payment. It is usually re-evaluated every year, but for 12 months you save time by setting up an automatic payment.
In these economic times there may be a time when you are unable to cover all of your expenses in a month. What do you do then?
* Remember that your mortgage payments should be a top priority. Late fees and marks show quickly on your credit report.
* Bankcards should also be a high priority because they also report missed or late payments immediately.
* Insurance payments for cars and houses are usually paid in advance, so they usual permit a grace period. Although, health insurance must be kept current or you may risk losing your coverage.
* Car payments may allow you to pay late or a partial payment if your payment history is good.
* Utilities are usually more lenient, allowing you to occasionally be late or even skip payments.
* Always communicate with your creditors and explain your situation. Making a payment of a little is better than making no payment at all. Finally, seek professional advice. Local debt consolidation services usually offer free advice on contacting creditors and structuring payment plans.
Money, bills, finances can take up time and energy if you let them. Control them instead of them controlling you! To get you started here is a worksheet to start tracking your income and expenses. Now go and get your finances organized.