Even though today is Beyonce’s birthday, this post is not about her chart topping hits. Although, we do admit she is one of our favorites.
The Queen B may not have to worry about coming up short on her bills, but the rest of us who aren’t raking in millions of dollars each year run into difficulties here and there.
According to a Public Agenda report, as many as 4 in 10 Americans struggle to keep up with their financial obligations, leading millions to rely on payday loans to get by. With typical families receiving anywhere from eight or more bills each month, and unemployment hovering at an all time high, it’s no wonder consumers struggle to keep up.
As you look at your stack of bills, it may be hard to determine which ones you should pay first, because they all have deadlines and you must pay them all to avoid further consequences. But prioritizing your bills to determine where and how to delegate your funds can help you get organized, and make your payments on time.
Stretch Your Paycheck
Sometimes your paycheck just won’t cover as much as you’d like it to. If you take out a payday loan to help meet your expenses, make sure you pay it off by the due date. This is one payment that you absolutely don’t want to fall behind on and have to pay the price a thousand times over.
Protect Your Walls
The first monthly bill you need to take care of is your rent or mortgage payments. Mortgage rates remain below four percent, much lower than year’s past, and if your current mortgage rate is high, you can benefit from a refinance loan, which can help lower your monthly payments by extending the term of your mortgage with a lower interest rate.
Many companies including insurance carriers and service providers offer discounts when you sign up for automatic payments with your debit or credit card. Signing up for auto pay can reduce your bills by a small percentage, but you have to make sure your account has enough funds to cover the withdrawal on the scheduled date – otherwise, you’ll not only miss your payment, you’ll incur overdraft and late fees.
Change Your Cycle
If all your bills are due at the beginning of the month, it’s no wonder you struggle from time to time. Talk to your providers and ask to have the due dates changed on some of your bills to spread them out throughout the month so it’s easier for you to make all of your payments on time.
Most companies are willing to work with their customers because, at the end of the day, they just want to collect your payment. If it means helping you by changing your billing cycle, automating your payments or refinancing your loan, more often than not they will work with you.