Last month, I intentionally held off on making some extra payments on debt. I wanted to try something new in October, something really crazy that I never thought I could do- paying my bills when they arrive! I wanted to pile up some cash so I could get ahead on the regular payments and not be on the usual paycheck to paycheck cycle.
Maybe paying the bills when they arrive is normal for you, but here is how my typical month would go. The month begins and the bills start to roll in. I start by paying the credit cards due at the start of the month, I’m careful to never pay those late of course. Next on the importance list is the mortgage, but typically after making the early month credit card payments, some car insurance, cable TV (auto deduction or I could delay it), then I don’t have the money for the mortgage until my next pay day. Over the past few months, this has left me going to the bank on the last possible day that I can pay the mortgage without a late fee, then generally having to juggle a few things and cross my fingers a bit that nothing unexpected will show up in my account and send that big mortgage check bouncing. Not fun!
This month is a whole new experience. I had the mortgage check in the mail before the 1st of the month! Today is the 4th and I have paid every bill but two, and those two are due around the end of the month. I know this may be hard for some to do, especially if you are stuck on the paycheck to paycheck cycle (right where I have always been), but if you can somehow start saving money ahead of the next month I think you will be pleased with the results.
I already feel much more relaxed and if something odd does happen with a payment not getting applied or some other bank error, I will probably have a chance to correct it before any fees are assessed. I think with careful budgeting and continued hard work at earning some extra money I can keep it up. We shall see!