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Not paying your bills on time is a big deal and one that could see you smothered in debt or even worse on the naughty list with creditors.

Using a simple bill payment schedule will ensure that you know when your bills are due so you pay them by the due date.

One of the biggest problems when it comes to late bill payments is that your credit rating can take a hit.

Defaulting on a bill payment means you aren’t abiding by the rules of the contract set out when you accepted a loan, credit card or service.

You will most certainly see a note in your file that your bill was not paid on time which creditors will see if they need access to your credit report.

This can cause you problems if you plan to apply for a mortgage, loan or if you plan on applying for a credit card.

Even if you have a mortgage and you default on a payment they will come after you faster than you can say, sorry.

For example, if you apply for a credit card and the credit company notices in your credit report that you don’t pay your bills on time they may offer you a higher interest rate.

They may also decline your credit card application as they don’t want to risk not being paid by you.

Throwing yourself under the debt bus means you need to work yourself out from underneath the tires which can take some time.
Importance Of A Bill Payment Schedule

This is why it’s so important to budget and stay organized with your finances which is why I created this bill payment schedule.

You can print this bill payment schedule and place it in your monthly budget binder along with your budget and other printables.

I left the bill payment schedule simple so you can use it month to month which means you print a new one each month.

By adding the entire year of bill payments on one page I felt that it may get confusing for some people so I kept it clean.

You can edit the document on your computer or use a pen or pencil to mark in the information needed.

There are only 4 columns in the bill payment schedule that you need to focus on.
The Bill- This is where you will write in the name of the bill Amount of the bill- Write in the amount of the bill you owe When is the bill due? – Write the due date in. Paid- Did you pay the bill? Leave a yes when it is paid or even the date you paid it so you know it’s paid. How Do I Pay My Bills On Time?
The reason I created this document was that quite a bit was happening in our lives at home.

If you’ve been reading the blog you know we’ve been through so much the past couple of years with family.

Our attention has been so focused on dealing with death and healthcare that we were falling behind.

We weren’t paying our bills late but we were scrambling at the last minute with our budget and that scared us.

It always seemed we were wasting so much time looking through our bills online to see if they were paid or not.

The most logical thing for us to do was create a bill payment schedule that we keep in our budget binder for easy access.

Every time we get a bill notification or paper bill in the mail (yes we still get those for credit cards) we mark them down.
Pay Your Bills BEFORE The Due Date
We always make sure that we pay our credit card bills at least 4- 5 days in advance of the due date so the bank has time to process the payment.

If you wait until the due date to pay the bill via your bank that payment may still be marked late by your creditor.

You can be sure that they will contact you right away to have a word with you because they will fear you won’t pay them or miss more bill payments.

They want the money in their hands by the due date and don’t care if you paid it on time before with your bank.

You can also talk to your bank to see how long the processing date is when you pay a bill online so you know exactly what to expect.

Credit card companies might not make a big stink about you missing one credit card payment but if you continue, they will.

It’s almost certain you will receive a late payment charge which just adds to the debt you already owe.

The key is to avoid all of this by making sure you either automatically set up payments via your bank account or manually pay your bills on time.

This bill payment schedule will be your guide and for those of you with families and busy careers this can be a saviour.
Aut0 Bill Payments vs. Manual Bill Payments
I believe a bill payment schedule is an excellent budgeting tool that everyone should have even if you do set up auto-payments.

It’s always important to follow what is going in and out of your bank account throughout the month.

You can check off on your bill payment schedule what bills have been auto-paid for peace of mind.

That’s what we do now because you never know if some fluke happens and the bill doesn’t go through.

Some of you might forget to move money to your chequing account which we did once.

Because of this, we got hit with non-sufficient funds by our investment company who charged us a fee as did our bank.

It was quite depressing because the fees were ridiculous but it was our fault.

Thankfully when I talked to our bank I found out that our over-draft was removed when we modified our bank accounts.

Since we found out that our bank accounts can be frozen if one of us dies and we both were not named on the account we had that changed right away.

It was the bank that forgot to add our overdraft back on so they took the non-sufficient charges off because of it. Phew.

Just remember if you don’t pay your bills on time that interest rate hikes because of your lack of organization will cost you.

Over time an interest rate hike can mount up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars based on what you owe including any late payment fees.
Use The Bill Payment Schedule Budget Binder Printable
My advice, print the free bill payment schedule I have in my free downloads and money-saving tools page and use it every month.

If you think you’ve got it all sorted out or use a different system to track your monthly bills, that’s awesome.

But for those of you who need some support, there’s nothing better than using a visual which is what we’ve created with this bill payment schedule.

It’s not only for us, it’s for you too!

Happy Budgeting friends.

Discussion: How do you track your monthly bill payments to make sure they are paid on time?

Leave me your comments below and I’ll be sure to respond.
Income Report September 2019

Where did the money go in September?
In September we bought paint for our bathroom, paid for our son to start swimming lessons and soccer as our 12-week session ran out.

They will be billing us on a monthly basis moving forward as they changed the billing process.

We also paid for a year’s worth of pizza for our son at his school, a spirit shirt, donated money and bought new shoes and pyjamas.

Another big hit to our budget was an assessment we had done for our son that cost us $450 but my insurance company only paid $175.

You’ll also notice I paid $500 under my work category because I had to renew my yearly parking pass.

It’s ridiculous but, it is what it is, expensive.

Again, our petrol costs were up due to all the travelling back and forth to deal with personal family issues.

I was happy to find a used flat-screen tv for my mother-in-law for her new home that only cost her $60.

The person I bought it from was upgrading to a SMART tv (which I will never buy again) and was selling her tv cheap.

That was our big bargain of the month.

This blog continues to bring in a decent income every month which I will one day disclose if you are all interested in the numbers.

It has taken me some time to start seeing some cash flow but I’m happy to say it’s finally here.

I’ll continue to work on updating all of my blog posts and from time to time you may see a sponsored post but keep in mind they help keep this blog running.

It’s NOT cheap to run a blog that offers you an income as you must pay for many things so it runs smoothly.

Anyways, that’s our month. I hope you had a great budget month.

See you at the beginning of November with our October budget update.
Budget Percentages September 2019

Our savings of 42.68% includes investments as well as any savings for this month based on the net income of $8213.20.

We put money away in our projected expenses for things that need to be paid for in the coming months.

All of the categories took 100% of our income which shows that we accounted for all of the income in the month of September.
Monthly Budget Expenses
Below is a breakdown of our expenses which helps us to understand where all of our money goes.

Since May 2014 we’ve been mortgage-free so much of our money will be directed at savings, investments, and renovations.

I appreciate that you enjoy this budget update each month but I do hope you view this as an educational tool rather than comparing your own financial numbers as our situations are all unique.

Spending less than we earn and budgeting our money has been the easiest way for us to pay down debt and save money.

It may be different for you.

Chequing– This is the bank account where all of our debt gets paid from. Emergency Savings Account– This is a high-interest savings account. Regular Savings Account– This is a savings account that holds our projected expenses. Monthly Budgeted Total: $5902.63 Monthly Net Income Total: $8213.20 (Check out our Ultimate Grocery Guide to see where our grocery money goes) Projected Expenses: These are expenses we know we will pay for throughout the year = $324.98 Total Expenses Actually Paid Out: $6902.00 Total Expenses Actually Paid Out: Calculated is $8213.20 (total net monthly income) – $324.98 (projected expenses) –$986.22 (savings to emergency fund) = $6902.00
Actual Cash Savings going into Emergency Savings: Calculated is $8213.20 (total monthly net income) – $6902.00 (actual expenses paid out for the month) – $324.98 (projected expenses) = $986.22 Monthly Budget Results
Time for the juicy category numbers and to see how we made out with our monthly budget.

Below you will see two tables, one is our monthly budget and the other is our actual budget for the month of July 2019.
Budgeted Amount
This budget represents 2 adults and a toddler plus retirement investments.

Budget colour chart: If highlighted in blue that means it is a projected expense.     

Actual Expenses

10 Step Mini Budgeting Series

Do you want to learn to budget as we do?

Please take the time to read through our budgeting series plus read Budgeting in the New Year.

I hope the information will help stop you from making common budgeting mistakes.

Our Ultimate Budgeting Guide from A to Z has everything you need to know about budgeting in one blog post.

Over the years we’ve created a 10 Step Mini Budgeting Series that will help you understand how to start using a budget.
CBB Budget Updates Month By Month Just in case you missed our budget updates and want to do a quick search I’ve compiled them all on one handy page: monthly budgets.
2019 Budget Challenge

When I was looking for people to join the CBB 2019 Budget Challenge back in December I had over 20 people interested in joining.
September 2019 Budget Challenge Update:
And then there were 4!

We started the year with 20 participants and are down to 4.

I’m so proud of these budgeteers!

As our budget challengers ventures along you may see their budget reports increase in data which I expect especially because it’s a learning experience for everyone.

The more you do a task the better you get at it and the more you learn about what you are doing.

The budget reports below will remain anonymous unless the writer chooses to use their name and each one will be unique.

They get to choose how they report their budget back to us.

Here we GO!!!
Budget Challenge #1
This has been a fabulous month for us! Hubby has finished up the exterior staining on the house so we’ve been taking “day trips” frequently.

It’s also soup season again at our house! We’ve been trying all kinds of new recipes as well as resurrecting some of our family favourites.

I have to say that my vegetarian roots are showing!

There are very few soups in this month’s meal plan that contain meat -2 / seafood -1. Our scallops were bought on a BOGO sale so we simply had to make a Scallop Chowder!

It was so good that it transported me back to our trip to Digby, NS many years ago.

All the rest of the soups are strictly vegetarian, my personal favourites.

The first weekend of September found us busy on the Saturday with early morning blood work at the lab, running around to 4 different banks and shopping at Costco as hubby’s toothpaste was on sale.  
Accounting and Investing
On Sunday I was up to my armpits in accounting…nearly 15 hours of it! It’s cash stashing time again!!

Remember back in April I swept any spare funds I could find into investments? Well, it’s that time again.

With the inverted bond yield curve predicting another recession, I want to get as much money invested as possible before the rates start to tank.  

The Federal Reserve having to rush in with 200 billion to stabilize overnight lending markets doesn’t bode well for the stability of the economy either.

Analysts predict that the Bank of Canada will be forced to start cutting rates again in October.

So…I have locked things in for 5-7 year terms at fairly decent rates. Once again…I feel broke.  

Hubby tells me I’m not actually broke, I just have nothing in my bank account. How is that not broke?
Emergency Savings Is A Must
I continue to keep our EMERGENCY ACCOUNT in cash however earning 3% at the moment. 

It has 2 years worth of net replacement income in it…just in case everything goes to hell in a handbasket.

I also have a month’s worth of cash sitting in one of our safety deposit boxes for another bit of a buffer in case the Emergency Account falls short of our actual needs in a crisis.

I expect the final 2019 “cash stash” will occur towards the end of December when I once again transfer any “surplus” funds to our brokerage account.

You’d think I’d get used to feeling broke but you have to understand that once funds are invested…they are NEVER liquidated back into the budget for general use. 

Hubby says the funds are gone until at least 2032 when he turns 71 and I am 77!!

He’s smart though…he put in his dibs for a new car purchase in 2020 when he receives an inheritance from his Mom, and before I invest every penny other than the cost of the car. LOL
High-Interest Bank Account Change
Our 2nd weekend included a meeting with one of our bankers to change the kind of accounts that we hold our cash in.

I finally convinced hubby to get a better paying high-interest account for his little “Mad Money” Account.

I convinced him by telling him exactly just how much interest money he had left on the table by letting his funds sit in a poor paying account. 

Once that was out of the way, the rest of the day was devoted to cooking plus a little baking.

This month I managed to re-connect by telephone with my longtime friend, of almost 50 years.

I was sad to hear that life has been very difficult of late for him with severe medical issues, a failed marriage and some nasty financial challenges resulting from his medical situation.

I had lost track of him when his marriage ended and found out he is no longer in Ontario but has moved to Saskatchewan for a cheaper cost of living and better medical care for his particular illness.

Hubby met him and his now ex-wife many years ago when they were out here in BC.

So, I brought him up to date on the status of our friend’s life.

We had a moment where we just stopped and gave thanks that we have each other, neither of us is suffering a crippling illness nor are we in such sad financial shape that we can’t afford a hot meal.

I think it’s important to be grateful for what we do have and how fortunate we really are…even if I do like to whine and snivel about feeling broke! Hahaha!
Dinner Celebrations
For the 3rd weekend in September, on Sunday, we met up with our friend for the “annual birthday celebration lunch” for both her and my hubby.

We always go to Olive Garden partly because it doesn’t break the bank.

Thankfully, we get out of there for under $30 including the tip by hubby having pasta with salad and breadsticks plus ice water.

I just have a Virgin Caesar drink with the olives and pickled onions they serve with it.

It’s really less about the food anyway…and more about just catching up with one another.
Road Trips For The Month
Our biggest trip of the month was catching a ferry over to Nanaimo for a wee visit with my girlfriend.

We haven’t seen her in a few years but I talk to her every week.

There’s nothing like a good face-to-face chat though is there?

The Transportation and Parking Account picked up the tab for all of the gas we used and the ferry costs…which to me are considerable.

It’s over $250 for a day trip between the gas and the ferry!

Fortunately, our Entertainment and Gifts Account was flush with cash so that we could spring for a nice lunch at Whitespot for the three of us!

My girlfriend is 78 and not in particularly good health, so who knows how many more chances we’ll have the opportunity to spend time together.

Visiting with friends before the weather turns white is an annual pass time for our Septembers.

With my fibromyalgia, I don’t tend to feel nearly as well when the weather is cold, wet and blustery.

That, in turn, means we don’t tend to wander far from home nor do we wander as frequently as we do in the summer.

Winter is my busy time of year in terms of accounting so I am pleased that we got to enjoy as much quality time with our friends as we did this month.
Vacation Budget Update
Again, we remain on track with our vacation budgeting and have finished off with $3,113.94 in our vacation accounts but let’s say that’s $1,500.00 for 2019 and $1,613.94 already saved for 2020.

Of the $1,500.00 allocated to 2019, we have already spent $200 on hubby’s early birthday celebration get-away and I paid off the credit card as soon as the statement was issued.

That means we only actually have $1,300 remaining to spend on our 2019 vacationing and have it planned out as follows:

Portland & Burlington – $400

Bellingham – $250

Bellevue – $650
Budget Challenge #2

September means Fall and that’s my favourite time of year. 
I thoroughly enjoy the crisp cool air, sweaters, slippers & blankets, baking apple crisp, and pumpkin spice everything. 
The kids are back in school and that means back to a normal routine for us too – thank goodness.
September is always an expensive month as there’s back to clothes (which thankfully I got almost all done last month), school fees, and extra-curricular activities. 
We still went over on our food budget, so I have resigned that I just need to budget more in that category. 
After 9 months of trying to get it down, it just seems like a losing battle. 
I have found other ways to save though, so I guess that helps. 
When I have some free time, I want to break our food budget down further and see if I can pin-point where we go over and if there are any patterns. 
For those of you that think we spend a crazy amount of money on food (and we do), our budget includes groceries, toiletries, take out, alcohol, coffee shops and restaurants. 
We do buy organic meat and some other organic products too, so I know that can be pricey, but it’s what works for us.

Our ‘Everything Else’ category, this month, included clothing, miscellaneous household items, a new cabinet, a birthday gift and a charitable donation.

We stayed under budget overall Enjoying our new bathroom Installed a new cabinet that gave us more space
We are still over on our grocery budget Budget Challenge #3 Hey Mr CBB,

September got away from me, I just realized now that I haven’t even read the post from all the August people participating in the challenge.
The last couple of months have sucked to put things lightly.
September 1st started off with the death of my grandmother.
It’s been a hard go, and as an emotional eater, I definitely hit the fast food/restaurants more than I should.
But, this has been a trend each month – I for sure am a stress eater and it’s something I’m going to have to learn to work on.
Vacation September also saw vacation time.
We do vacation every September as my boyfriend’s work closes for a week, and we always go to PEI.
His family lives there we don’t have too many costs as they house us and feed us most of the time.
Hurricane The big surprise of the month was the hurricane where we lost power for 6 days and lost all of our food.
I also went over budget on my data plan because, well, I’m addicted to the internet and I needed it to keep my sanity.
Budget Update Outside of my normally allowed expenses, I went over:
Restaurants – $85
Groceries – I didn’t really go over because of being on vacation and eating out so much, but we lost about $250 of groceries.
In some ways, it’s good though as it allowed me to clean out all those weird condiments from God knows when, and get rid of the freezer-burned food.
Transportation – Having to visit family after my grandmother’s death, travel to another province including bridge tolls and extra driving put me at about $150 over.
Cellphone data: $5.75 extra on my bill (phew, I thought that was going to be much worse).
Budget Challenge #4

Here’s my September submission: September update

Current Status 112% to Budget

As I reflect the past several months of my budgeting journey, I realize that I have not given this my all.

The reason being that I am struggling with anxiety and depression since having my baby.

All I want is for things to be easy, I know letting things go for the last few months is going to come to bite me in the butt one of these days.

However, I am secure knowing I have savings for things like this.

I’m lucky that I have quite a bit more time off until I go back to work, though some days I’m dreaming of going back to work so I don’t have to deal with the baby as much.

He’s so cute and such a happy baby when he’s awake, the anxiety comes up when I have to put him down for a nap or bedtime when he cries.

However, I know this won’t last forever, but I’m ready for this phase of his life to be over.

I recognize these feelings get worse when I don’t have enough sleep so that’s what I’m focusing on, for now, I definitely don’t want to be on medication.
Budget Wins
This month I’ve been paying more attention to my Facebook moms group.

They sometimes have kids clothes up for grabs really cheap, this month I scored a big box full of baby clothes for free.

I couldn’t be happier that they all fit him and have come in handy.

It definitely helps me want to be more giving in the future.

I’ve also been doing a lot of research on baby sleep and am thankful I have a library close by so I don’t have to spend so much on reading material.

We saved a little bit on auto because I’m using less gas, however, we did sign up for a replacement cost insurance for my husband’s truck.

It gives us peace of mind in case he gets into an accident.

That’s our biggest expense every month is the payments on his truck.
Budget Fails
Failed again with food, mostly eating out.

The easy stuff. Once I get my mood under control maybe I’ll be better at restricting my family.

However, I am proud to say that we mostly cook at home on the weeknights otherwise I think we’d probably break the bank on this.

I also failed at savings this month; I didn’t put away as many savings as I wanted to because I lost my work maternity leave top-up.

We also bought a few Christmas presents this month which we take out of our misc category so we spent a bit more than we budgeted.

That’s my update, see you next month!




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