Have you paid a few too many late fees? Do you have the money in your account but you just forget to schedule the bill? Or perhaps you are scared to automatically pay your bills because you want to make sure that money is in your account (it is all timing, right)? Well, darling, this post is for you.
I have not paid in bill in over two years. Am I defaulting on my mortgage? Heck no! Do I have credit card bills stacking up on the table? Thank goodness, I don’t. What I have done is automate my bill payment process so that I no longer have to think about my bills being paid. This confidence was not always there. Even though I graduated with a degree in Finance, it took me well into my thirties to get this automated in a way that didn’t put me in constant worry that I was going to overdraft my account. Before using a system that allowed me to set aside and dedicate certain amounts to bills, I was always playing the timing game (and wasting a lot of time doing that). Want to win back your time and stop wasting those precious moments sitting in front of your computer or checkbook?
Let’s dig in…here are some things that I consider key to setting yourself up to free your time from paying bills:
- Eliminate extra bank accounts down to one central account – this allows all of your money to be in one place. Do you currently have savings accounts for different purposes? It is a waste of time and money! Put all of your money in one place. This cuts down on so much busy work and transferring money from one account to another. Concerned about keeping track of savings and goals (which is why you opened up that vacation saving account in the first place)? Keep reading.
- Have a system in place for your money to be set aside and given purpose. In my Budget On Purpose Collective, I teach the ins and outs of using an incredible system called “You Need a Budget” or YNAB for short, which allows you to give purpose to your money and set aside your hard earned dollars for upcoming bills, savings and specific intentions. You no longer have to wonder if the money is there to pay the bill. I can not stress how much this alleviates worry, time and the stress of whether a bill can be paid or not.
- Simple and automated payment service. Most banks now are set up for automatic bill pay and for good reason. It saves both the customer and the banks time, money and hassle. Less checks and paperwork makes everyone happy. If you haven’t tried it out, this is a great way to pay for things that normally require a paper check such as utilities, rent and condo or HSA fees. Some banks will even send a physical check if that is what is required by the merchant or landlord. Worried that the payment won’t be made on time (this is for all of my fellow control freaks out there)? Many banks now offer an on time guarantee. I still circumvent this by having the bill paid a day or two early to just be sure.
- Automate as many bills as possible. This goes for automatic online bill pay, credit cards in full (or a certain amount if you are paying them down) and anything else that offers an automatic monthly payment. Many times there are perks for this service as well.
Now it’s Action Time! Comment below and let me know what you are going to look into in the next 24 hours to get yourself on the way to one less bill being paid manually. Our time is MORE valuable than money, so don’t procrastinate.
Much love to you,