Feb 222008

Great article on TheStreet.com yesterday about paying bills online. I’ve summarized it here:

Say it ain’t so — you’re still writing checks.

After all this time, only around 28% of Americans pay their monthly bills online. If you’re still putting felt pen to safety paper, you’re missing out.

Online bill payment can help you to manage your budget, protect yourself from identity theft, declutter your life and protect the environment.

Here are five reasons you should sign up for online bill pay:

1. It’s Free

At most banks, there is no charge for using online bill pay.

2. It’s Easy to Use

You can pay anything using online bill pay — credit cards, mortgage payments, even the babysitter (as long as she accepts checks).

3. It’s Secure

Online banking is safer than traditional paper banking. In fact, just 2% of identity thefts occur online — and 53% of identity thieves know their victims personally.

4. It Makes Record-Keeping Easier

Moving your bills online will drastically cut back on the amount of paper you’ll have to file.

Better yet, you’ll have easy electronic access to your records — which is much more convenient than digging through paper files.

You’ll still get your monthly statements, as well. Some banks will mail you the paper statement. Others will give you the option to view it online. If that’s the case, follow your bank’s instructions to save a copy on your hard drive.

5. It Helps the Enviroment

If every U.S. household switched to paperless bill pay, the ensuing reduction in emissions would be equivalent to taking 355,000 cars off the road.

For more details, see the full article at TheStreet.com. These are all great reasons to make the switch and start paying your bills online, if you haven’t already. I’ve been paying all my bills online for about three years now, and I don’t miss all that paper at all. And I like knowing that I’m doing something for the environment.

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