Never Miss a Bill
With all the credit card spending going on this month, I thought I’d share my how to guide to never miss a bill. In order to keep track of all of the payments I need to make each month, I put together a spreadsheet of all of our household bills and when they are due. This helps me keep track of due dates without having to worry about if I received a physical bill or not. In our house, I do all of the bill paying. Therefore, my husband gives me his portion of the bill money, and I issue all the payments. This spreadsheet also helps me determine how much he owes for the month.
The first section of bills on my spreadsheet are joint bills. This includes the mortgage, con edison, insurance, utilities, cable, and vacation. The next section consists of my husband’s bills including his credit cards, phone and car insurance. The third section is for my bills: credit cards, phone bill, and my car payment.
Across the top I have the days of the month. For each monthly bill, I find the date that it’s due, and in that column I put the estimated cost. I keep a blank copy of this spreadsheet and each month I make a copy and update the title for the current month. Below is a sample spreadsheet. Of course all the numbers are made up, but you can get the idea.
At the top, you can see a section labeled income. If you are concerned with overspending you can use this to track your income as it relates to your bills. At this point, our bills are generally consistent, so I don’t use this section much. When baby number two comes, we may need to re-evaluate.
Every Sunday is bill day for me. I look at the week ahead and pay all the bills for the week. I generally pay everything online so I can spread it out during the week or make sure that if I get paid on Monday and the bill isn’t due until Wednesday, I schedule it for after payday. Often I will schedule payments up to the following Tuesday, that way if something comes up and I don’t do the bills on Sunday, I have some leeway. Once a bill is paid, I highlight it in a different color, so I know it’s paid. You can see that in my example above, the payment amounts are highlighted in a darker yellow.
As you can see, I total our joint bills which in the example comes to $1,210.00. I then total what my husband owes. In the example its 50% of the joint bills plus his personal bills. You can determine the percentage of the joint bills based on your incomes or however you see fit. In our case, my husband works part time and stays home with our son while I work full-time. Therefore, our split isn’t 50-50. The final total at the bottom is the total bills for the month. In general, I like to check this against our total income for the month to make sure that we are not overspending. This isn’t necessarily the best check though, unless you pay off your credit cards in full each month. It also doesn’t take into account what you pay for in cash, but it is a good frame of reference.
I hope you enjoyed this bill pay breakdown. Since I know my bills and I mark down when they are due, I never miss a bill. You can get a copy of my spreadsheet for free by clicking the button below.
Emily Bendler is a mom, wife, full-time insurance adjuster, professional dancer, dance teacher, graduate student, and founder of I Hope You Dance, Inc., a non-profit supporting youth dance. Read how Emily used her dance ambitions to become a time management maven. Feel free to send Emily a message using the email me tab above.