It is quite challenging to manage your finances and if you forget to pay your bills, you further complicate the situation. This is one of those completely avoidable instances you have total control over. Forgetting to send in the payment is different from not having the money to pay for your debt obligations. These two require completely different approaches.
If you do not have the ability to meet your payment because your income is not enough, that requires a different strategy. You would need to find ways to bring in extra money every month to help you make payments. It will also help to revisit your budget as you try and cut down on some of your payments. But it is totally different when you just keep on forgetting to send your payments out.
If you are not able to pay your bills because you simply overlook your payment, then you need a different approach. This is not to say that an increase in income and lower expenses will not help. But this will not be able to solve your problem. You will still find yourself back in the same situation facing this recurring problem.
Fox Business shares that because of the pandemic, there has been an 8% increase with people prioritizing bill payments from last year. A lot of people are beginning to understand the importance of meeting their bills payments. Here are a few of the things you can do to help you do the same this year and stay current on your debt payments.
Pay your bills on time with an automatic payment
Pew Research shares that about 28% of American adults they surveyed are using online or electronic payment methods. This makes it easier to send out their payments compared with sending out checks or lining up the bank to make payments. You also get to take advantage of technology to make sure you save time and be able to monitor your payments a lot easier.
Some people though choose to take it up a notch and enroll in automatic payments. As the name suggests, the payments will automatically be sent out on a pre-scheduled date. The only thing you need to make sure of is that your account has enough balance to cover your payments. Choosing to use this payment option eliminates the need to manually make payments every month.
Though this does not come with its own set of challenges. For one, if you become too complacent and forget to check on your balance, you can end up missing payments as well. This can go on for months until you check back your account. Always make sure that your account has more than what you need to make the payment just to be sure you do not encounter problems down the road.
If you forgot to pay your bills, put payment reminders on your smartphone
PR Newswire shares that Americans check their smartphones 96 times a day on average! That rounds off to about once every 10 minutes. That being said, it is a good idea to use your phone to help remind you of your payment due dates. It will be a good way to stay on top of your payments and lower the chances of overlooking p[ayment dates.
There is a good chance that you have a calendar in your smartphone you use on a regular basis. You schedule both social and work-related dates on your phone. Try adding payment due dates as well. It would be a good idea to put in the reminder a few days prior just to be safe. Your due date might fall on a weekend, a holiday, or something might come up on that day you have to prioritize.
Remember that these reminders can only do so much. It is still up to you to make that payment. You can also combine these reminders with automatic payments. This way, you only need to check your account if you have enough balance to cover your payments. If not, then you have time to transfer some funds to help you meet your payments.
Ask for help
There will be times when you simply need to ask for help when you are having problems remembering to pay your bills. For married couples, you can always ask your husband or wife for help. Remember that you each have your own strengths and weaknesses that you bring into the relationship. If you are having a hard time remembering or keeping tabs on your payment schedule, do not be afraid to ask for help.
Why pay your bills on time
Now that you have an idea how to improve your chances of paying your bills on time, it is good to be reminded why you need to pay on time. Here are some of the reasons for doing that.
Avoid interest and other fees
If you continuously miss your payment deadlines, your succeeding payments increase because of penalties, fees, and other charges from your lender. This is the reason why you never want to be late with your payments. If at all possible, you always need to make sure you pay your debt obligations in full every month.
If your finances are not enough to pay in full, making sure you pay the minimum amount on time. This helps you stay current and avoid high interest rates. Lenders could still add some fees but it will not be as much as missing a payment and being slapped with huge charges.
Avoid unnecessary debt
If you always forget to pay your bills, succeeding payments will keep on going up. In time, you will have a difficult time paying everything back. The total just keeps on getting bigger and bigger until it goes out of control. This is what you are trying to avoid because when you get to that point, you now have to start taking a different approach. It now becomes a debt repayment strategy which started from overlooking payment due dates.
Take care of your mental health
There is no question that debt and financial problems affect your mental health. When these financial challenges start to overwhelm you, it is easy to be affected mentally. You could begin to think you are in a difficult situation and begin to give up even before you do anything. Depression could soon creep in and mess with your mental health.
A lot of people suffer from mental health problems and if you can identify financial triggers, it is a good idea to get ahead of it. If you know that your stress level spikes up whenever your lender calls you up reminding you about your payment, make sure you pay your financial obligations on time. This gives you peace of mind knowing you are taking care of your payments and not getting a collection call anytime soon.
It is quite easy to overlook and forget to pay your bills on time when you start to consider all the things you have to do. But there are tips to help you address this challenge. If you make on-time payments, you are not only making sure you are paying your bills. You are also helping improve your credit score. This can be a great advantage when the time comes you have to borrow money in the future.