Self Improvement

Managing Your Finances: Pay Your Bills On Time Using A Payment Worksheet

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There are countless ways to handle personal finances, everyone does it just a little different. Methods range from tracking every expenditure in an elaborate spreadsheet and having all bill payments automated, to others who still write physical checks and mail them in using the good old United States Post Office. Still others struggle to manage their finances. I used to be one of those people. They know they need to do something, but they don’t know how to start.

One of the most important steps in successfully managing your finances is to make sure your bills get paid, and on time. One way to do this is create a monthly payment timeline.

Step 1: Create A List Of All Monthly Payments

Write on a sheet of paper, or even better in a word processing document, every recurring monthly payment you have, what day it’s due, and how much the payment is. Some of these payments are constant, such as mortgage, auto loan, or insurance payments. Others, such as utility bills, may be variable. Leave these amounts blank for now.

Step 2: Rewrite The List in Order Due

Next, rearrange your list so the recurring expenses are in order by date of when they’re due. This is your monthly expenses template.

Step 3: Create Monthly Worksheet

At the beginning of the month, copy the template into a new document or piece of paper. If you have blank amounts for variable bills, fill in the amounts as you receive the monthly bill.

Step 4: Review The Worksheet Often

Each time you receive a paycheck, review the worksheet for bills due from that date until the next payday and make the appropriate payments. Put a check mark next to an expense when you make the payment to show that it is complete.

Step 5: Repeat Each and Every Month

Create a new worksheet and follow this process each and every month. You will eventually get into a rhythm and it will be come second nature.

If you’re having trouble figuring out how to manage your finances, creating a monthly payment worksheet is great place to start. It will help you at least be aware of when your bills are due, pay them on time and avoid late fees and falling further behind.

How about you, Clever Friends, how do you remember to pay your recurring monthly bills?

Brought to you courtesy of Brock

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About the author

Brock Kernin

6 Comments

  • I make use of my bank’s online Bill Pay feature. As soon as I get a bill, I go online and schedule a payment to be made 1 day before the due date. The bill is taken care of immediately and I don’t have to worry about it anymore. Before I used Bill Pay, I would write a check and put it in the envelope. I’d put the date I needed to mail the envelope in the upper right corner where the stamp goes. Then, on that day, I’d put a stamp on it and drop it in the mail.

    • Good system, Shaun….the only problem is many services now send their statements out electronically, and they can get lost in an inbox. The worksheet is a good “checks and balances” system that helps prevent a mistake.

  • I used to use a spreadsheet with bills and due dates listed in the first column and each column after that would represent the month. That way I could put an “x” once it was paid. Now I use online bill payment, but I still list my payments with due dates and estimated amounts on a spreadsheet, just so I can glance at it once in a while and make sure everything is going as planned.

  • Luckily, we don’t have too many recurring bills. And they are automatically paid, either through my husband’s checking account, or charged to the credit card. I would notice fairly quickly if a bill didn’t get paid because it also wouldn’t show up on Mint.

    • I know some people like the automatic payments…..but I like to a least “press a button” to manually make the payment. I feel more in control….

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