How To Pay Bills Online
Do you still pay bills the old-fashioned way but want to know how to pay bills online? You can save time, hassle, and sometimes money when you pay all of your monthly bills online. Whether your bank is a brick-and-mortar type or a web-based branch, online banks let you connect to your account through the Internet. Once connected, you can easily check your account balance, transfer money, view check images, print copies—and pay your bills online.
Today, more and more companies accept payments through online bank accounts. To eliminate the paper checks, envelopes, and postage stamps from your bill-paying life, follow these simple steps.
- Register your bills. Your bank’s website will walk you through the process. Have all your account numbers and billing addresses on hand before you start. It takes a few minutes to register all the bills you want to pay, but you only have to enter the information once. You can add bills, delete bills, or make changes in the future.
- Schedule recurring payments. If a monthly bill is for the same amount each month, consider setting up a recurring payment for that company. Your bank account will pay the company the same amount each month, at the same time each month, so your bills are always paid on time.
- Make "one-time" payments. If a bill amount changes from month to month, you can pay that bill on a "one time" basis each month. Make the payment a few days to a week before the bill’s due date, to ensure that your bill is paid on time and you avoid late fees.
- Check your monthly statements. Sometimes a company will change a billing address or account number without notifying you. Check your statements carefully each month to verify all transactions and details.
- Check for online security. To access your online bank account, you will have a username (login) and a password. As with any data regarding your account, keep your codes secret. To ensure that you are accessing the account over a secure line, look for an icon of a locked padlock—or whatever your bank tells you to look for.
- Beware of scams and phishing. Crooks often send out email that looks like email from your bank. The email may request your account data or personal information. If you receive this kind of email, contact your bank directly and ask if it is legitimate. Never click on an email link to access your bank account, and never share account information with anyone.
In addition to online bank accounts, you have two other bill-paying options. You can choose to pay your bill through a company’s website using a credit card, debit card, or bank account number. Or you can use a third-party service that collects your bills and alerts you by email when payments are due.
While company websites and some banks offer free online bill-paying options, many services come with a fee. So do your research before signing up for any of these services.