I decided I would take control of my family’s finances while I was pregnant with my firstborn baby. No, finances are not my forte. No, I did not pass any math class with anything higher than a C average. In fact, my C’s were celebrated.
My history of not being a “numbers person” did not deter me from taking charge of our bank account. I could balance a checkbook AND pay bills. How hard could it be?
My husband was supportive (albeit cautiously) and handed over the reigns to our accounts. And I was amazing. I kept track of every dime, checked our accounts frequently and made our payments on time. Until I didn’t.
I started slipping up on my bill paying routine and wouldn’t you know they actually charge a late fee when you don’t get those in on time?
I decided to set up an automatic payment plan where money was withdrawn from our accounts to pay our collectors and I wouldn’t have to lift a finger. I thought this was a great idea.
After a few months I realized my bank was actually charging me a fee each time I used this new method of payment. In fact, every single time a payment went toward our bank issued credit card, they tacked on an additional 5 dollar service fee.
I was outraged. How dare the bank offer the ability to make automatic payments online and yet not be forthcoming about the fact that they actually CHARGE to use that service!
When I called the bank to complain I was assured they actually do not charge for this service and I was all, “Impossible, clear as day I see a recurring charge for these scheduled payments.”
And then I realized I had set up payments to occur AFTER the actual bill due date. Because when you log in to pay a bill on the 5th that was due on the 1st and decide to set up bill pay to happen automatically every month on the 5th…well you continue to receive late fees because your bill is supposed to be paid on the FIRST.
Leave it to me to manage to set up a late bill pay for myself.
Luckily my supportive (albeit cautious) husband was able to laugh (AND LAUGH) about my mishap instead of making me feel terrible for losing money each month.
At least I have a wonderful lesson to pass on to my own children when they’re ready to take control of their finances, chances are one of them might not be a “numbers person” either.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SunTrust Bank. The opinions and text are all mine.
At SunTrust Bank their purpose is lighting the way to financial well being. They help you get organized, make a plan, and stay on track so you can get and stay in control of your finances. When you are confident about about your money, you can save for your goals and splurge knowingly on what matters most to you.
To get started visit suntrust.com/getorganized.