• Comment

Money-Saving Mama: Be smart about checking your bills

Posted: October 26, 2016 - 12:31am  |  Updated: October 27, 2016 - 2:33pm

How often do you receive a bill or statement online or in the mail and pay it without even looking at the details and fine print? Isn’t it easier to just take for granted that the bill is correct?

Let’s start with medical bills. These are by far the most confusing of any bill. Most of the time there is no breakdown of charges on the bill, only the date and a brief note of the reason or the name of the doctor.

Unless you know that the bill is correct, it is wise to call the medical center that is sending you the bill and ask for a breakdown. While you might not understand it all, looking through it for obvious errors is the first place to start.

The mistake could be as simple as medication that you are being billed for that you know you did not take. It could be for a medical device that you were never given.

If you need help deciphering the bill, ask around. Chances are there will be someone you know who knows enough about billing to help you understand. You can call or visit the medical center and ask them to walk you through it line by line.

While they might be irritated at having to do this, it is your right to know what you are being billed. If you find errors, make note of them and bring them to the attention of the billing office for correction.

On your home bills, such as cable, cellphone or the like, always check line by line to make sure that what you are being billed for is actually what you have in your possession or what you have done. You could have been charged for a movie you didn’t rent, time that you didn’t use or a modem that you don’t have.

If you have credit card statements, save your receipts until your statement arrives. Check off your charges as to what is on your statement. If there is an error, immediately call and dispute the charge.

Another big one is your bank statement. In this day and age of people scamming, and with identity theft running rampant, you can never be too careful.

Again, keep your receipts until you check them off of your statement, making sure to balance the statement back to your register. If you are unsure of how to do this, or if you cannot get your bank book to balance, go see your customer service representatives at your bank and they can walk you through how to do this.

If you do find that you have missing money, contact your bank right away. It will start an investigation and will determine what happened. If the bank determines that someone did take your money, you do have fraud protection and the bank will adjust your account accordingly.

If you have not done so in a while, it might be time for you to go through all of your online accounts and change your passwords. Doing this from time to time makes it harder for someone to hack into your accounts.

The best way to do this is to not make the password something everyone would be able to guess; use upper­case and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols. Just make sure it is something that you can remember or that you have it written down in a very safe place.

Also make sure that you are not using the same password for more than one account. Again, this is a huge safety measure – if someone were to figure out your password to one account, he or she would have it to all of your accounts.

Things are so automated and less secure than they seem these days, so you have to be vigilant in how you handle your finances. Even if you don’t have much money, make sure that you keep a good account of it and that no one else can get their hands on it.

Taking these precautions now will potentially save you headaches later on.

  • Comment

Comments (1)

Armstrong

If you do find that you have

If you do find that you have missing money, contact your bank right away. It will start an investigation and will determine what happened. If the bank determines that someone did take your money, you do have fraud protection and the bank will adjust your account accordingly. Accounting Qualifications

CONTACT US

ADVERTISING

DELIVERY & DISTRIBUTION

  • Call 706-722-5620