According to all kinds of research it appears that one of the biggest skills guys under the age of 25 (probably more like under the age of dead) want to know is how do I pay my bills? I think the real question is how do I avoid forgetting to pay my bills which means I come home to the electricity being turned off because I didn’t pay the bill.
But whatever your reason, I’m going to show you how to pay your bills.
One big reason is a southern gentleman is a man of his word and that means paying people what you owe them. Whether it’s visa, mastercard or cousin goober.
It’s Not Complicated
A lot of guys think they “just can’t” pay their bills so they let their wives or God forbid, their mommy do it for them. If got more than a D in 2nd grade math and know how many months there are in a year, you can pay your bills. All it’s going to take is one Saturday and probably not even the whole day, to get organized. You only have to know 3 pieces of information to pay your bills
- What You Owe
- When It’s Due
- How Much You Make
That’s it. And none of this information is classified and requires 3 forms of ID for you to get. What you owe and When it’s due is ON THE BILL. What you earn is on YOUR CHECK STUB.
That’s it. You don’t have to know what your APR is on the car payment, you don’t have to know the maturity date of your mortgage (that comes later, right now I’m trying to teach how to keep your cable from being turned off right before the Alabama LSU game comes on).
The next step is you get to decide how you’re going to track all of this. Remember all you need to track is what you owe and when it’s due. The options are endless
Mint– great app for tracking your bank account activity but the budgeting part is a little weak.
Google Calendar- This is what I use. When I open a bill, I simply enter it in google calendar. But here’s the secret: Set the reminder to the day BEFORE the bill is due. Preferably set to go off before you leave home.
You can go old school and get a paper calendar and do the same thing. The trick is developing the habit of checking it FIRST THING every day. Before facebook, before instagram, before texting. Get it? Before Anything!
When it comes to tracking what I owe vs what I earn, I use a very simple spreadsheet that I keep in Google Sheets. It’s dirt simple, what I earn is at the top, then my bills are listed/deducted and the balance spits out at the bottom. Here’s a bonus tip, if the balance shows up in red, with a minus sign in front of it or in parenthesis, that’s BAD!
If you want the ultimate in secure, then get a $1.99 spiral notebook and the calculator app on your phone. Then the process is the same, write down what you earn at the top, then list all your bills. Subtract the bills from what you earn and presto you just learned the concept of disposable income.
Do this at the begining- look at your bank balance. Be sure it’s a nice, pretty, positive number. Now if you follow what you wrote down, this number should never go negative. But just to be sure, set Mint or your bank app to send you a text if your balance drops below $100. Then check the balance once a week. Come on, it takes all of 30 seconds on your phone/computer or full minute to do a balance inquiry at the ATM.
There you go. That’s it. Easy, breazy.
I can’t end this post without giving a select group of guys a swift kick in the ass. Be a man. Pay YOUR OWN bills. Don’t put the task off on your wife or God forbid YOUR MOMMY. If you can add and subtract, you can pay your own bills. Quit being lazy and take care of your crap.
Email me at email@example.com if you’d like a free copy of the spreadsheet I use.