Automatic payments are a double edge sword. It is nice to set your bills up to be automatically paid from your checking account so that you don’t forget to pay them. I have a credit card that I use for most items set up that way. However, as I am paying bills and balancing statements using Quicken it is easy to ignore that bill because it is going to automatically paid. I tend to save it for last then if I get tired of paying bills I think “I will get that one next time”. Well I finally got around to it today and what a shock, there were seven months of bills to reconcile. It used to be easier because I could download the transactions directly into Quicken and then just reconcile. However, several years ago the bank that I have the card with sold it to someone else and I lost that feature. I have a Chase card that Quicken can access and I am thinking of switching most of my transactions to that card.

Nearly all of my monthly bills I have set to paperless and just go  to their web site and download the PDF version of the bill. I save all of the PDF versions to an encrypted drive and regularly make encrypted backups. It is so much easier to find something on the computer than in the filing cabinet. A couple of years ago when you could claim a telephone tax rebate on your income tax the default was like $25.00 or you could enter exact amounts from your phone bills. I opted for the exact amounts since I had all of my bills and go back over a $100. About 2/3 of the bills I only had hard copy and the other third I had PDF files. The ones where I had PDF files took me about 1/10 the time to go thru as the ones where I had to look at hardcopy bills.

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