We’ve all been there. Sometimes we get caught up in a million different things that we forget to do this one very important thing. So, what are we talking about? Paying our credit card bills on time.
However, this mistake should not be repeated as falling behind on your credit card bill payments can negatively affect your credit scores. Credit card companies generally share your credit card payment details with significant consumer credit bureaus.
A report filled with delays and penalties will lower your credit score. This will prevent you from availing of better financial services in the future. To help you avoid such mistakes, we have compiled tips to help you make your credit card payments on time.
Create a Budget
One of the primary reasons people fail to make their credit card payments is that they have no idea where the payments will come from. Make a written budget that will help you track and keep your expenses in check.
If you know exactly how much you will be earning and have a plan for every penny you will be spending, you won’t face many issues with on-time credit card payments.
You can prioritize your spendings such as utility bills, telephone expenses, and monthly groceries. You may even be using your credit card for those things so keep that into account.
Now you need to calculate the amount remaining from your income after all of your necessary expenses. That money should go to paying your credit card and if anything is left over, you should save it.
Make a List
If you have multiple credit cards, you likely keep forgetting to pay the bill for one card or the other occasionally. To avoid this lapse, you will need to create a list of all your credit cards, preferably at the start of every month.
The list should include the credit card details, the transactions carried out, and the payable amount due. Once you have your list ready, separate it into two categories: the credit card payments that can be done automatically and those that can’t.
At the end of the month, crosscheck the list to ensure that each payment has been taken care of. If you still find any entries with pending payment, make the payment ASAP.
Change Your Due Dates
Your credit card payment dates are the same every month. However, if you usually end up with late payments, it means that those dates are inconvenient.
It might be due to various reasons, including getting paid later than the credit card due date. You can talk to your credit card provider/s and get your payment date adjusted to a feasible one.
For instance, if you receive your salary on the 7th of every month, you can ask to get your payment date changed to the 10th or 15th of the month rather than the 1st.
Similarly, you can also change the due date if you have too many payments due at once. Most credit card providers will comply with your request, making the credit card payment process a bit simpler for you.
To make the tasks simpler, you can lean on various technological tools available. Some of them are provided by the credit card issuer, such as SMS and email alerts reminding you of the payment.
If you don’t want to rely on your credit card provider for reminders, you can make use of sites like followupthen to send automated email reminders to yourself a few days before the due date. You can also set reminders in your Google calendar for the same.
Similarly, you can have auto-payment turned on through your online banking services. A word of caution: Set up auto-payment only if you have a fixed, reliable source of income. If you have irregular income or don’t have sufficient funds in your account, you should opt for manual payments.
By developing and sticking to a budget and having a strategy you can make paying your credit cards an easy task. It may look like you will require a lot of effort, but in reality, once you start following your plan, the rest will be a cakewalk.
And it’s all worth it, as you’ll end up saving on the late payment fees and improve your credit score.