I was tagged by Melissa at A Penny Closer for the My One Money Advice Meme. It’s a cool idea, people share one piece of money advice (or a tip or a story) which they think will help others.

So, here’s my bit of advice: Open the bills and then pay them right away or use calendar software.

Bills don’t exactly scare me, but they don’t make me happy either. One problem I have is knowing that I won’t have to pay it yet and ignoring it for too long. Then there’s late charges and other crap to deal with. Fortunately, I came up with a solution.

When a bill comes now, it must be opened (whether in e-mail or snail mail). Then I check when it’s due (and look for any obvious errors). I make a calendar note well-beforehand using Google Calendar. Then it goes back in the “To be paid” basket or my inbox. Google Calendar sends me a reminder the night I’m supposed to pay it and I get right on it. We’ve been doing this for a while with the cell bill and I just started doing it with the water one too.

That’s my little piece of advice. I’m tagging Millionaire Mommy Next Door, CashMoneyLife, and Nina at Queercents. No pressure, but I’d love to hear what you three have to say! (hoping you haven’t already been tagged…)

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Queercents » Blog Archive » Home Equity Line of Credit at Your Disposal
October 18, 2007 at 9:31 am

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Kacie October 17, 2007 at 1:16 pm

I like your electronic system! We use online bill pay for most of our things, but sometimes, we just have to mail a check. For example, we had to pay school taxes. We wrote a check right away, but post-dated the check for the due date.

They aren’t supposed to be able to cash it until then. We took care of it right away, but still had money in our account for as long as we could.

frugalchick October 17, 2007 at 3:23 pm

I saw your post just after I was done paying my bills online. I totally agree, paying the bills as soon as they come is a guaranteed way to avoid late fees.

I do the same with junk mail. I toss them out as soon as they come in, shred what needs to be shreded and I just eliminated one big clutter source in my house.

GreenPanda October 17, 2007 at 3:40 pm

I agree that online bill pay is a great way to go. It eliminates a lot of hassle. You just worry about the direct deposit going in.

ms. m&p October 17, 2007 at 9:22 pm

GOOD TIP. There’s nothing worse than paying late fees and other BS fees that companies can tag to your account. I’m not a happy camper when I forget to pay bills (which, knock on wood, hasn’t happened in a long time).

Nina October 18, 2007 at 9:33 am

Mrs Micah, thanks for tagging me. I’ve written and posted mine over at Queercents today.

Melissa October 18, 2007 at 11:33 am

Awesome advice! It’s a pain and a waste of money to pay late fees so having a bill paying system is a must. I hate it when I misplace bills so now I pay them as I get them (or at least I pay them the next day). I set them next to my computer for a not so subtle reminder.

Thanks for keeping the meme going!

mrsmicah October 18, 2007 at 6:17 pm

I’m glad others think this is useful too. Late charges are a pain in the butt. And particularly hard to reverse unless you have a good track record.

Interesting idea, Kacie. I believe that banks will still cash postdated checks. But some people may not deposit them before the date.

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