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Five Reasons People Don't Automate Bill Payments

Five Reasons People Don't Automate Bill Payments

Online banking is something most of us couldn't imagine living without, and more than half of Internet users pay at least one monthly bill online. Some of those people pay each bill online by manually entering payment information every month, and the New York Times explored five reasons why these consumers are hesitant to automate their bills.

  1. Errors: Some people worry their bank will make costly mistakes when removing funds from their account, but banks will automatically credit your account for a mistake as long as you inform them within 15 days of receiving a statement showing the error.
  2. Service that won't end.: If you cancel a service and the provider continues accepting automatic payments, it can be difficult to get those funds back. It can be easier to stop automated payments if they're set up through the bank rather than authorizing a biller to withdraw funds from your account.

See three more reasons why people avoid automated bill-pay when you


  1. Expired credit cards.: Expired cards can lead to unpaid bills without a customer noticing immediately, so be sure to call your billers with the new expiration date when you receive your new card in the mail.
  2. Security: Some people are concerned that granting too many companies access to payment information can compromise security. On the other hand, some think nonautomated payments create more security issues.
  3. Complacency: Don't just set it and forget it. Monitor your monthly payments to ensure you're not paying too much for one service and to be sure all your bills are paid.


thelorax thelorax 9 years
hahahaha mondaymoos I LOVE IT. You're a kindred spirit :-) I don't really like seeing the money going out, but I do get a lot of satisfaction knowing that I've earned and saved enough money to cover those expenses on time!
eeliabethc eeliabethc 9 years
My reason: changing due date. It seems like my credit card bill can be due anywhere within a 10 day period, so I don't know exactly when to schedule the payment for. Plus, paying it myself makes me examine the bill a little more closely!
mondaymoos mondaymoos 9 years
My reason is pretty silly, actually. I LIKE paying my bills. It cheers me up to see everything I had to get done that paycheck is taken care of. Having it automatically come out kind of takes my happiness away.
thelorax thelorax 9 years
#s 1 and 2 have been my line in the sand, but indirectly I guess #5 is a factor too. I just like to be in full control of my hard-earned money and know where it's going and how much I have left to work with!
nv27 nv27 9 years
I pay all of my bills online, but none of them automatically. I prefer to log in and confirm things are as they should be then to have money automatically withdrawn.
psterling psterling 9 years
Some bills I automate but my #1 reason for not automating all of them is that I worry that I might overdraw my account. Paying bills when I want to helps me keep tabs on what I'm spending.
lauriegilbert lauriegilbert 9 years
I like to have the paper copies for reference if something happens months down the road. I've had to reference them too many times in the past.
Le-Luxe Le-Luxe 9 years
I don't do it for all the above reasons. I would rather go and sign in online every single month and make sure its done right than count on them to do it for me.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
for myself - i think that i feel better about knowing what the bill is if i have to enter it in myself. i think that if it were direct debit - i would lose track of things since i wouldn't have to think about it so much. i don't mind entering in the numbers each time. yes it's a few minutes longer than doing it otherwise - but it's a few minutes that i'm willing to spend.
linb linb 9 years
The only reason I don't do it is reason 5. I like to have complete control over my money at all times.
cmd0610 cmd0610 9 years
I don't do it for reasons 1 and 2 . . but as for reason 5 I always check my bills, automatic payment or not- Comcast was charging me $20 for HBO services that I never asked for- EVERY MONTH for FIVE MONTHS I had to call them and "re-cancel" this unwanted service bc the cancel request "never went through". I always got my bill amount changed but it was a huge hassle and I'm so glad it wasn't an automatic payment- that would have been an even bigger hassle!
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