A Short Guide on How to Make Payments Online

In the past, people paid their bills by means of cash or checks. They would write checks, place them in an envelope, stick a stamp, then have them processed, which could take until a week. Nowadays, a lot of people pay their bills online. Though there are several ways to do this, one convenient way is to use a system via their bank such as bill pay.

Reasons to use online bill payment

Individuals who use online bill pay via their checking account can enjoy the benefits not given by other payment schemes. Firstly, they can set up payments for all their bills from a single location rather than manage their payments on many, different sites. They can keep track of due dates and make sure they pay everything on time. There are other advantages like:

  • Avoiding overdraft fees – payment will not be sent when the funds are insufficient.
  • Viewing pending payments before their due date.
  • Protecting personal information rather than submitting bank account details on other sites.
  • Being able to change the amount or date of payment if necessary without the need to call or migrate to another website.
  • Setting up automated payments for regular expenses every month such as electricity or cable bill

In addition, online banking makes it easy for people to monitor their balance, rather than wonder when payments will be posted or checks will be processed and subtracted from their account.

Ways to benefit from online bill payment

Using online bill pay with their bank is advantageous at all times, however, individuals can maximize the benefits it offers by using it regularly. To use it to its full advantage, they have to know how to handle their payments.

As a start, they need to get the contact details of all the companies they plan to send payments to and include them as payees. Most companies are incorporated in the bank’s system, so it would be easier for them to get the needed information. A lot of banks send checks to payees that do not recognize ACH payments. People just need the payee’s contact details, plus their account number.

They should plan the payment for every payee ahead of time. They should also be familiar with their bank’s policy on when the payee will receive the payment, so they would not have to pay a late fee. If the amount and date of payment is the same each month, they should set up a recurring payment to ensure that a bill is paid on time.
If online bill pay is used for all their payees and automatic payments are set up, they can save on time and manage their budget. Furthermore, if there are any concerns, they can always refer to the record of all their payments.

With an online rent payment service, paying bills has never been more convenient. Using online bill to handle finances allows people to save on time, costs and a lot of stress since they can track their payments and balance from just one location. With all the benefits that online bill pay has to offer, paying in cash or checks are nearly reaching extinction. Would you like to learn more about our own online rental payment system?

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Paying your bills online – What are the advantages?

Let us look into the main benefits of paying the bills online:

Easy

Using online bill pay allows you to save on time. Instead of writing out checks, gluing stamps and keeping a file of papers, setting up an online account can get rid of these steps. It will also be much easier and faster to manage your debt.

When you need to go over previous bills, you do not have to waste time looking for them because all of your account details are located in one centralized location.

Cost-Effective

Online bill payment enables you to save on postage stamp costs. On the average, a household receives 15 bills every month, amounting to $70 in postage costs per year.

Try to avoid late fees that can be incurred when payment is made after the due date. When you miss payments, this could bring about:

  • Higher interest rates;
  • Over limit fees and late fees;
  • When payment is overdue, your account could be placed on collection status.

Convenient

To manage debt more conveniently and efficiently, go for automatic online bill payment solutions. Creating an account will enable you to set up recurring payments that will regularly be withdrawn from your account. This way, you can minimize the possibility of late or lost payments, saving time during the process.

Even if any of your bills is due the following day, online bill pay makes sure your payment is posted right on schedule.

What consumers should watch out for

There is always some kind of risk involved whenever doing transactions by electronic means. This may only be minimal, but it continues to increase due to the development of more sophisticated hacking techniques.

Over the last few years, a technique called “phishing” has become a major concern. Phishers give out fraudulent messages (via a web page pop-up or email) that are intended to deceive you into sharing your personal account details. Such messages often look legit (with their company logos etc.) so they can easily trick consumers when they are not too careful. According to a recent study, 57 million Americans have been sent phishing emails, and of that number, almost 2 million individuals have been tricked into giving their personal account info to a counterfeit source.

How to Avoid Scams

Consider the following tips to stay away from online scams:

  • Review your online banking transactions on a regular basis to make sure there is no suspicious activity going on.
  • Change your online passwords every 1 to 2 months. Always choose a password that has upper and lower case letters, plus symbols to reduce the chance to be guessed.
  • Watch out for fraudulent emails. Even if an email looks legitimate (with a logo), it may have been sent by a fraudulent source. If the email wants you to verify or update your personal account information immediately, do not respond to the email.
  • When you get an email from an unknown source, make sure to delete it. If you mistakenly open the email, do not click on any of the links. You might download a virus to your computer. If the email looks legitimate, type the web address in your browser instead of clicking on the link.
  • Keep the anti-spam and anti-virus spam software on your computer. This will help you to block out spam and junk mail.

Looking for a reliable online rental payment service? We have specialized in this type of solutions for tenants – get in touch with us today and discover our rent payment service!

Reasons to Use Online Bill Payment

In the past, people were not comfortable about paying their bills online. Majority of them felt it was not secure to transact on the web and thought that their money was put at risk when using the online bill payment system.  Every time you give your checking account information to your utilities provider and insurance company, there is a possibility of getting overbilled or falling victim to identity theft. Writing on checks and stamped envelopes seemed a lot safer. For this reason, there are people who still follow that practice.

However, a lot of things have changed. Many people are paying nearly all their bills online, including credit card payments, loan payments, mortgages, rent, tuition fees and utilities, among others. So, why should you opt to pay your bills online?  To start with, you can save a lot of time and postage costs as well as late payment fees. In addition, paying online is a lot safer than by means of snail-mail. Your personal information is more prone to identity theft while on print and being transported through the postal system. If you pay your bills using your credit card, it would be easier to monitor and manage your finances. Moreover, you can earn travel miles plus receive cash-based rewards.

There are 3 easy ways to pay your bill online: through your bank, on the biller’s website or via a third-party.  They all come with advantages and disadvantages so it is up to you to decide on the method you prefer.  There are several good reasons to move ahead and pay your bills online.

Every time you hear about online bill payment, you might think that it has something to do with arranging automated drafts from your bank account so you can pay your bills. Nevertheless, more people use their credit cards to pay their bills online. Also, more merchants accept credit card payments therefore you can pay your rent, mortgage and other bills with your credit card whenever you want to.

Online bill payment is undoubtedly easier and faster than paying via check and snail-mail. In essence, it eliminates problems that involve procrastination. You no longer have to worry about not paying your bills on time. You can agree to a monthly payment schedule through your bank/billing company so you will not go past the due date. Granting you pay online on a monthly basis instead of doing automatic payments, you still save on time, costs and frustration. Even if you pay online close to the deadline, you still save on time since online transactions are still faster than mailing payments.

When you are online, you could be prone to hacking, getting computer viruses and spyware (there are less risks with automated payments). However, you are also prone to identity theft when mailing payments. It is best not to mail checks and paper statements that include your personal information. Whenever you make an online bill payment, you have an option in case of a dispute since you have records of payments and their respective dates.

Thus, contrary to what people formerly believed in, online bill payment is safer than snail mail since it includes more protection when you use your credit card to pay your bills.

An online rental payment service can bring great advantages to both the landlord and the tenants. If you are in the rental business, you really should start considering a rent payment service.

How to Encourage Your Tenants to Pay the Rent Online

Landlords continue to search for efficient ways to manage rent payment collections. The traditional way of collecting rent from tenants who pay in the form of a check may still be comfortable for some property owners, but this could also bring about some problems. Checks can get misplaced or lost on their way to you, or tenants may forget to hand over that check on the first day of the month, making you spend more time and effort to monitor their payments.

Fortunately, an online rent payment service can address many of the aforementioned problems and benefit landlords and tenants alike. However, even if a lot of tenants pay most of their bills online these days – like auto payments, cards and utilities – there are still some who hesitate to pay their biggest bill through the Internet. So, how can a landlord encourage tenants to do online rent payments?

Online Rental Payment Advantages

As earlier mentioned, receiving online rent payments takes out the middleman from the process: tenant to landlord to bank. Landlords no longer need to receive a check, file it to deposit later, go to the tenant’s record to mark the payment, sign checks to be deposited, fill out the bank deposit slip and go to the bank to deposit the money. All they have to do is get the payment in one click, then transfer the amount into your bank account with another click. Landlords can set up automatic payments for their tenants, linking their bank accounts to that of their tenants. Rather than wait for them to mail the rent check or drop it off, it will automatically be withdrawn from the bank account of the tenant and deposited into that of the landlord.

Online banking can also save a lot of time and money for tenants. They no longer need to fill out a check, mail it or drop it off. They just need to fill out some spaces online and permit payment, which only takes a few seconds and saves on stamp costs. When a landlord allows credit card payments, tenants can get major rewards from their credit card payments.

How to Encourage Online Rental Payment

A landlord can do a number of things to encourage tenants to pay their rent online.

First of all, see to it that the transaction is free of charge. This is very important. No matter how small an online fee would cost, people would not like to pay it. Make sure to stress that online bill pay is trouble-free and that includes fees, regardless of their amount. So, remove them totally.

Accept credit card payments. You might think that tenants that pay via credit card are spending more than they can afford, but as mentioned earlier, most people pay their bills with credit cards to earn reward points. Allow your tenants to pay rent with their credit card since they know they can have a free vacation by doing it. You will have a smooth sailing income while they get good credit evaluation.

Give incentives for online bill pay. You can give a discount on the monthly rent or a gift card. When you offer rewards and prizes, tenants will be willing to join. This way, tenants will have the habit of paying rent online and will never go back to the traditional way of paying rent.

Tips on How to Collect Rent and Get Paid On Time

Implement your policy on collecting rent

To make sure tenants pay regularly and on time, the best practice is to make your rent collection policies firm and consistent. However, there are some exceptions.

In your contract of lease, you should include all payment related issues such as the following:

  • Exact due amount per month
  • Where rent is paid
  • Accepted payment methods
  • Rent payment due date and grace periods
  • Consequences of bounced checks or non-payment

There are times when you may feel sorry for your tenant who is going through difficult times, or being too quick in charging a late payment. When you are convinced that a tenant is having a “one time” experience, you can be a little more considerate.

On the other hand, to prevent them from taking advantage of your kindness at some point, make your policy firm after that, and stop being too lenient. Make them understand that whenever paying bills, rent should be a top priority, and that they will be responsible for the costs caused by delinquency.

In case you lack time and cannot collect rent payment or late charges, you can always hire a reputable property manager to do the job.

If they cannot pay on time, know the reasons

If you come across tenants who were not able to pay rent for the month, ask them some questions to figure out the issues they may have.

  • When will you be able to pay rent?
  • Where will you give your payment?
  • How much will you be paying?
  • What method of payment will you use?
  • What source of income will you use in making your payment?

If they avoid answering your questions, give them an eviction notice on the following day. An eviction notice can only be served when tenants break your lease agreement. Verify your state rules to know the legal length of time needed for the notice before filing for eviction, and if your state requires several violations before proceeding with eviction.

You can serve notice (unofficially) in a simple way like sticking a piece of paper on their door that says “pay past-due rent to avoid eviction”. It will only be official when a formal letter is mailed and sent by means of Certified Mail as proof of receipt. More often than not, a notice taped to the door is sufficient to scare them into looking for the money elsewhere (like from dad and mom).

Give incentives to good paying tenants

The most important part of handling a rental property is keeping hold of good tenants. At times, landlords focus too much on avoiding unnecessary situations that they fail to notice the renters who make your work worth doing.

If a tenant always makes a rent payment on time, follows your rules and maintains your property, let them know that you appreciate what they do by giving them a gift card or a basket of fruits.

The best time to show your appreciation to your tenants is after they have paid one year of successive, well-timed rent. Gifting indecisive tenants with a timely gift basket can also motivate them to renew their lease.

Of course, if your tenants would have the possibility of paying the rent online, it much be much easier for both parties involved. It’s easy to implement this step – learn more about our rent payment service.

Why online bill payments are becoming more and more popular

Perhaps one of the best advantages of online bill payments is eliminating the use of paper. Banks and service providers usually ask their customers whether they would rather receive billing statements and reminders via email. Nowadays, almost all bills that are mailed can also easily (and less costly) be sent electronically. With less mail and envelopes to open and refill, this means less bother for you, as well as less footprint in the landfills.  When these firms create fewer bills, more fuel and energy can be saved on printing, processing and transporting them. Therefore, it is safe to conclude that online bill payment is a versatile scheme when it comes to environmental benefits.

Paying your bills online enables you to manage your finances (as well as your counter) at the same time. When you are not an organized or technical person, paying your bills online may seem to be a bit intimidating. You feel that it is less stressful to get a paper billing statement in the mail, prepare a check then send it back. However, in reality, online bill payment is simpler. It may take some time to set up, but the moment it is through, you can be sure that there will be no late payment charges or lost things in the mail (or the huge pile of junk on your counter) ever.

There are a number of services that can let you consolidate bill payment. Thus, when you are tired of hopping from one site to another or getting your checkbook every month at different times when payment is due, you can opt for a third-party online billing service.

They collect (scan them in some cases) and email your bills via email, as well as post them to your account, then they automatically withdraw from the account you choose on the date you designate. You can view bill calendars and get alerts every due date. Other services allow you to pay anyone from your account (at times, with a credit card or check). There is no need to remember user names and passwords when paying every bill. There is nothing easier than that.

Certainly, most of these services come with a price (just a few dollars monthly and a minimal fee for every transaction), but to a lot of people, this is so small a price to pay for all the convenience you get.

It is difficult to stay organized and stay focused on your finances when paying your bills the traditional way. When you paid the monthly fee for your cable service, the bill often gets shredded, lost in a pile of paper or filed. If there are changes in the amount or unnecessary charges to your account, this may take months before you realize it. On the other hand, if you pay online, you will be able to view your records and know right away if something is wrong. When you pay through a third party bill payment service, you can instantly view everything in one location.  This is similar to hiring the services of a professional organizer without any cost.

Now that you’ve seen the advantages, it’s time to invest in an online rent payment service for your tenants – let them be able to pay rent with credit card.

 

Benefits Offered by Online Payment and Recurring Customer Billing

Like other businesses, your revenue may depend on payments from customers that are scheduled on a monthly, quarterly or semi-annually basis. Nowadays, more businesses are offering recurring billing options for their goods and services, which makes it more convenient for both the customers and the business. Most businesses, together with other establishments  – such as banks and financial firms – normally require their customers to mail a check, call to give their credit card information or to pay their bills at any of their locations. Going for any of these options can use up most of your customers’ time, as well as bring about problems with regards to late or non-payments.

Are you thinking of including online payments in your line of services? Consider the following benefits that an online payment solution could provide for your business and customers:

Convenience

A lot of customers are happy paying online since they can do it from any location, any time of the day. This sees to it that there will be no late payments due to a slow delivery of mail or processing. Also, customers do not have to waste their time on the phone or falling in line. Customers can pay their bills online and instantly receive an email that confirms the receipt of payment, approval and a reference number for their record.

Security

An online payments solution uses many security measures to protect you and your customers. Most online payment platforms use different types of encryption to protect confidential information from being accessed by an unauthorized party. As an example, since Visa cards are the credit cards that are most widely used worldwide and accepted in more than 150 countries, they have their own security measures – such as the 3-digit security codes found at the back of every card. Customers are usually asked to input this number to avoid fraudulent transactions from pushing through. Aside from the protective measures provided by Visa, Mastercard and Amex, online payment solutions let your business post payments without having any access to confidential credit card information. The moment a customer inputs his/her credit card details online, this is stored safely in their account information.

Timelines

It can be very frustrating for customers to find out that their payments were not received on time. Most businesses charge late fees, so it is natural for customers to get mad when they have nothing to do with the delayed payment. Fortunately, you can have recurring billing options, so your customers can make their payments immediately via an automated system. This not only eliminates a task from your customers, but also allows the payments to be made on time.

Customer Satisfaction

When you offer your customers the option to make their bill payments online in a secure and well-timed manner, you make it more convenient for them. When you present them with options to meet their needs, they tend to have a more favorable view of a business. To keep the customers satisfied, provide them with convenient yet secure solutions to fit the modern-day consumer’s lifestyle.