I found out quickly that using the automatic bill pay feature many companies offer online is not for me. It's too automatic. You relinquish too much control to the company you're paying. I don’t know about you but I don’t like surprises when paying bills. They may slip in a rate increase and your chance of finding it is nil. Or some credit card charges could be fraudulent and you may not find out for months when it's too late.
Michelle Carley, Bookkeeper, and Owner of Big E-Z Bookkeeping Co.
On the front of the card I list:
In the top right of the card, I put the due date in big letters like DUE the 5th of EACH MONTH.
First - Setup an internet browser just for paying the
bills and checking bank balances
I like Google Chrome for browsing most websites. They seem to be able to weed out the fraudulent sites pretty well. But when it comes to bill paying and checking my bank account balances I use a separate, different browser just for that. You can use Firefox or Safari. I have two folders set up under Favorites. One folder has links to my bank accounts so I can check balances and the other has links to all the bills I pay online. The URLs should not change so I feel pretty secure I’m visiting the correct site and not a phishing scam site.
Second - Setup a reminder system that contains all your
bills to pay in one place
I like using a Rolodex for this purpose. I like the way everything is contained in the Rolodex plastic box with the flip up lid. And no, I don't represent the Rolodex company and I don't get a penny for mentioning this. (If you don't want to go to the expense of buying a Rolodex you could just use 3 x 5 cards with a rubber band around them to keep them together). Each Rolodex card holds all the information for each company I pay monthly. I do write small so I can list an entire year's payments on the back of the card. I just noticed that they now have a petite Rolodex on Amazon for $11.
Here is what I do and it works really well:
When I Get Paid
When I get paid, which is twice a month, I sit at the computer with my Rolodex plastic box with the little cards in it and set-up payments for the next two weeks. Here's what I do:
1) I make sure I received what I'm supposed to be paid and it is waiting in my bank account.
2) I flip through the cards and pull out the ones with due dates coming up soon.
3) I open my designated browser for paying bills and click on the favorites link for the first company to pay.
4) I sign on with my login and password.
5) I look over the transactions to be sure everything is correct.
6) I determine how much I will pay.
7) I schedule the payment date to be the same as the due date or the day before it's due.
8) I record this information and the confirmation number (if they gave me one -- some companies don't, which is a little weird) on the back of the card.
And I go on to the next one and so on.
So, there you have it! The kit and caboodle. Everything from start to finish.
On the back of the card I list: