Welcome to Mission #3 of our 52 Organizing Missions.
If you’ve completed the previous two missions Get Organized Mission #1: Fill a Hu-u-uge Trash Bag and Get Organized Mission #2: Detox Your Briefcase/Tote/Bag, congratulations!
Keep up the momentum with this week’s task, which helps you get your finances sorted.
This is one of those high-payoff projects. It takes only a little time to set up yet saves time, bother and possibly penalty charges later on.
Disclaimer: This post is designed to provide organizing help, not financial advice. Please be proactive and decide whether you should talk to a financial professional.
Remember – you only have to spend 30 minutes to complete the basic mission. If you want to go further check out the Extended Organizing Mission Options below.
Get Organized Mission #3: Organize Your Bill Payment
Step 1: Gather copies of all your regular bills
Your regular bills might include:
- Cell phone
- Car loan payments
- Credit card payments
- School fees
Step 2: Set up automatic bill payment where available
Many of your regular bills may be automatically payable each month from your back account or credit card. Check for details on the back of your bill or look up your account online.
You can generally set up automatic payment by phone, online, or by using an ancient type of admin called ‘a form’. (Don’t fight it – whatever effort you make now will be worth the saved time, money and hassle.)
It goes without saying that you need to be able to cover these bills from your credit card or bank account. But I’ve said it anyway.
Step 3: Set up internet banking or phone banking
Ideally, all your bills will be automatically payable. If so, your organizing mission is complete and you can spend any remaining time tidying your financial papers.
For any bills that aren’t automatically payable, set up internet banking or phone banking to pay these bills at your convenience. Phone, visit or get online to set up your accounts.
When a bill arrives, check whether it will be autopaid. The bill will say something like: ‘Payment of $287 will be made by autopayment from your credit card on 28 November 2009. Please ensure funds are available on this date.’
If it’s a pesky one that can’t be autopaid, diarize the due date. If you use something like Outlook you can set a reminder, too. And on the due date, pay it.
Alternatively, if you have several bills that aren’t able to be autopaid, you might prefer to save time and batch the tasks by paying them all at once, online or by phone – but before the earliest due date.
Dos & Don’ts
- Don’t procrastinate on organizing your bill payment. These 30 minutes of personal organization will save you time – and possibly money – every single month.
- Do keep any passwords for phone or internet banking safe and secure. Be organized and smart!
Extended Organizing Mission Options
Want to go beyond this 30-minute organizing mission?
- Since credit card payments are at the higher end of interest charges, pay them off in full in each month if you can.
- If you have high-school-age kids, this is an excellent mission to complete with them. Teach them valuable financial and organizing skills all in one go.
- If you have ancient bills and receipts you no longer need for tax or accounting reasons, consider shredding them now.
Ready, Set, Go!
Remember – move quickly, act fast, don’t overthink.
Before You Go – Please Check In
You’re now accountable to your organizing mission-mates! Once you’ve completed this week’s Get Organized Mission please add a comment to let us know you’ve done your assignment and you’re keeping your commitment.
(Click ‘Comment’ at the very top of this post or scroll down to the bottom. Depending on how you’re viewing this post, one of those options will be available for you.)
And see you back here next week!