WEEK 2: CREDIT IMPROVEMENT

New to the Live Richer Challenge: Credit Edition? Learn more about it HERE.

Need to catch up? Click on yesterday's task and then come back.


Day 9: Bills on Lock

Today’s Easy Financial Task: Automate your bill payments to improve your payment history record.

How to rock this task:

  1. Set up a separate account for your bills
  2. Automate bill payments from your bills account

On to the next day!

Today, we’re going to talk about paying your bills on time. As we discussed last week, your ability to pay bills on time is the component of your credit history that holds the most weight when calculating your credit score.

Remember:

  • Payment history: 35% of your score

  • Amounts owed: 30% of your score

  • Length of credit history: 15% of your score

  • Type of debt: 10% of your score

  • Inquiries: 10% of your score

If you’ve had a few slip ups in the past and not paid bills on time, don’t feel bad.

As time passes, the recent history of paying on time will supersede past missed payments. Then, after seven years, late payments fall off of your credit report altogether.

The purpose of this task is to put in place a process that will help make sure you never make a late payment again.

Here’s how to do it:


1. Open a Checking Account for Bills

Open up a new account at the same bank where you have your current checking account so you can easily transfer funds from one to the other. The new checking account will be specifically for bills. Make sure the checking account you open offers a bill pay service.

Do not connect a debit card to your bills account...(It’s not a fallback account when you want to go shopping!)

2. Automate Your Bill Payments  

Here’s how to automate payments:

1) Tally up the total amount you pay on various bills.

2) Set up automatic transfers of that amount from your main checking account to your bills account.

3) Use the bill pay feature offered by your bank to send out automatic payments to cover your bills. There’s a reason to use bill pay from your bank instead of setting up automatic payments with each company. You want to avoid putting your information in another company’s system. Having your bank transfer money or write checks on your behalf is safer.

What About Past Due Accounts?

You may be thinking: getting your life together now is all well and good, what about fixing past mistakes?

Another way you can get a credit score boost is by bringing your past due accounts current. It’s considered an “extra credit” on the FICO score metric.

So, if you do find yourself in a situation where you have some late payments on your report (that are accurate), you can turn the tide in your favor by making a change now. Then, use the tips above to make sure you don’t fall back into the habit of paying late again.

That’s it for today, Dream Catchers!


If you have any questions, leave a comment below. Reach out to your accountability partner(s) to keep each other on track.


Share what you’re doing today with your social media friends and tag me @thebudgetnista

Today I learned how to improve my payment history. Day 9: #Liverichercredit


Live richer,

Tiffany


P.S. Don’t forget to get your free Live Richer Challenge: Credit Edition Starter Kit. Get it here.

P.P.S. Here’s a copy of the Challenge Calendar. It’s a fun way to keep track of your progress.

You can also reach out to me here:


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What’s the Lisa Rule? If I would not advise Lisa to use a product or service, I won’t advise you to either. YOU are my Lisa's. I feel protective over you and your financial journey.

The products and services I recommend pass my Lisa Rule. Yes, I may be an affiliate or partner and earn a commission off of referrals or income, but I would not recommend a product or service that I didn’t believe was helpful and useful.


Share the wealth!


  • I have been doing this for several years now and I find that paying my bills is done with so much ease. It’s another thing off my to do list.😀

  • I cannot wait to set this up!!
    ✅ Improves payment history
    ✅ less time spent writing bills
    ✅ AND saves on postage 🔥🤑!!

  • I am so behind on my bills, the payments are quite large and can’t afford to pay the minimum. How should I tackle this with auto pay of my bills?

  • I’ve been automating my credit card bills through my regular bank acct. using my debit card. I’m bringing my late payments up-to-date with my credit card company so I can start using my cards again. However, this is causing my bank acct. to be in “negative” status. The payments on 2 of my cards are rather high but only for the next 3 mos. Should I contiinue to make these high payment s? Im taking your advice and opening up a checking acct. solely fo paying my bills.

    Bobbie

  • I never thought about opening a separate checking account just for bills. I’m definitely going to look into that. Thanks

  • I have my mortgage and car note on auto bill pay since they are the main ones that I want to be sure are paid on time. The others, I have to juggle them around depending on how my paycheck is set up 😂

  • I had been writing my bills out manually because my mom always did that. Also, paying at least a $100 more than the minimum. Now because of this credit check up challenge I’m going to stop using the high interest cards & automate all my bills. Also I will work on ways to increase my regular in income from home to pay extra on the high interest and pay off some small amount credit cards in full. It has to work.

  • Not putting your information in other companies’ systems regarding paying your bills is something I never thought about, just another reason I’m so glad I’m taking this challenge. The information has been INVALUABLE!!! Bill pay set up from MY bank.

  • Each month, I would log on to each of my credit accounts and pay online because I thought that was the best way to manage my bills. I like the idea of automation, where I don’t have to worry about my bills being paid on time. #Automation complete.

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