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How Can I Prevent Making Late Payments?

Article Details
  • Written By: Alex Newth
  • Edited By: Angela B.
  • Last Modified Date: 07 July 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Making late payments to a credit card, vendor or other creditor can hurt your credit score or business reputation, but there are a few ways to ensure you avoid late payments. You can start by writing a list of all your creditors’ monthly payment dates so you know when you need to submit the money. Many people use an online payment service because it is convenient, but this also ensures the money gets to the creditor quickly and with little chance of the payment getting lost or not being registered. Receiving text-message reminders and emails also can keep you from forgetting a payment date. Some creditors have an auto-pay feature so money can be taken directly from your bank account and you do not have to manually submit a payment.

Most creditors request payment within 30 days, and they expect the money on roughly the same day each month. To help you remember when a payment is coming up, you may want to make a list of each payment day. By remembering the due date, you can submit the money and prevent late payments. Organizing bills by payment-due date also can help, because simply looking at the top bill on the stack can tell you how long you have until you need to make a payment.

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Getting reminder text messages and emails also will help you remember upcoming payment due dates. Unlike a list that can get lost, forgotten about or obscured by other documents, reminder messages will come to your inbox each month and are usually harder to ignore. Such messages also can be timed to coincide with payment due dates that may change from month to month, which also can help keep you from making accidental late payments because of the changing dates.

An online payment service is often used because it is convenient when compared to mailing checks or money orders to a creditor. Mailing a check or money order also increases the chances that the payment might not reach the creditor or that it will be stolen. By using an online payment service, you will ensure that the payment reaches the creditor and is received within minutes instead of days, which keeps you from submitting late payments.

If you do not want to go through the hassle each month of making payments manually, then you can set up auto-payments. Many creditors have this feature, which takes money from your credit card or bank account whenever a payment date is coming up. You will need to supply bank or card information, and this will prevent any late payments unless your card or bank account has no money left.

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