Dedicated to Deposits: Deals, Data, and Discussion
Featured Savings Rates
Featured Accounts

The Pros And Cons Of Setting Up Automatic Bill Payments

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 6:54 AM
The obvious advantage with auto bill payments is the convenience, but if that makes you less careful in reviewing your bill, you may miss overcharges and fraudulent charges. This Business Insider article has a good overview of these pros and cons. Do you have autopayment set for any of your bills?
Ken TuminKen Tumin5,471 posts since
Nov 29, 2009
Rep Points: 125,634
1. Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 7:42 AM
The only bill I have credit card autopayment set for is my local newspaper subscription of $12.75 per month. All utility, cable, internet and telephone bills are paid through bank draft.
ShorebreakShorebreak2,677 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 14,532
2. Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 8:37 AM
Zero auto payments. Home/auto insurance paid with points gathering credit cards and settled at end of month. Property taxes are the only thing paid in person via check as my county charges fees for debit/credit card payments and the bill pay takes to long. Out to squeeze every last $0.00000000002 worth of interest from my money before I pay anyone. Never late though. Okay done.
klinkklink100 posts since
Dec 8, 2012
Rep Points: 274
3. Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 9:16 AM
Yes, I have autopay for my credit card bill and a utility bill.  I always check both when I get the bills for discrepancies so that I will have time to get them adjusted before they withdraw funds from my checking.  I have so far never had a problem with it being done on time or the right amount deducted.  I am not charged a fee for autopay and it is convenient for me to do certain bills this way.  I just have to make sure I keep enough money in checking especially to pay out credit card each month.
paoli2paoli21,401 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 6,135
4. Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 11:58 AM
To clarify somewhat...

Some businesses refer to automatic payment plans as 'bank draft' programs. Instead of writing a check to pay the bill each month, you provide bank information to your service provider. They transfer (or draft) money from your account electronically via the ACH system. You don't have to spend time paying bills and they don't have to deposit your payments and wait for your check to clear.

Otherwise the standard definitions usually are:

Automatic Bank Draft

Quickly and easily pay your bill each month by having it drafted directly from your bank account. Regular payments will be debited from your bank account when they are due, ensuring your bills are paid on time every time.

Automatic Credit Card Payment

Be sure your bill is paid on time, every time when you have it paid automatically from your credit card. Regular payments will be charged to your credit card when they are due. Plus, you’ll receive the benefits of any rewards that your credit card company may already offer, such as frequent flier miles or program points.

ShorebreakShorebreak2,677 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 14,532