Paying your bills on time is easier than ever. Online bill paying is everywhere. You can schedule recurring payments or make one time payments with the click of your mouse. There are some things that you need to be careful about when making online payments. Most of these are pretty obvious.
First you need to make sure that you have enough cash in the bank to cover what you are attempting to pay.
There are some businesses who claim that they take online payments but it is really the old fashioned way of sending an ACH draft through the account. It doesn’t automatically come off your account. It is sent through the system like a check. You’ll know if it is the ACH draft when you are reading the print on the confirmation. Remember to deduct the ACH draft from your check register balance.
Obviously, if you don’t have enough money in the bank at the time you are attempting to make the payment and a business automatically deducts the amount from your checking account, then the payment will be declined. For scheduled payments as well, it is equally important to make sure that the money is in the bank at the time of the payment. They will be declined as well if the money is not there.
Make sure that the online payment sites are legit.
At my present employment, we are seeing increasing amounts of emails that are spams that look remarkably like the real online bills from everything from shipping to credit card companies. There are always misspelled words in the spam messages. They also ask you to rekey your information for verification and that is how people get taken. Once you key in the information on a spam message, they will be able to withdraw from your bank account. If you are asked to rekey the credit card number and do it, then they will have the credit card number and can start using it.
Always make sure to print out the online confirmation.
Just last week I made an online payment and printed out the confirmation. It was one of those ACH drafts. The payment has never gone through my bank and now they are calling me. I have my confirmation number which also has the time and date that it was made. I don’t like paying a bill twice, so I make sure to print out the receipt everytime. Receipts are very important!!!
These are just a few of the suggestions that I have when making online payments. You may have others. Please share them with us.