The first of the month means it’s time, once again, to pay the rent.
While there’s a powerful incentive to remember — and some fairly painful consequences if you forget – you can set yourself up for success with a few suggestions.
When you forget…
The rent is generally due the first day of the month, for most renters – and the typical landlord holds hard and fast to that requirement. If you’re late, then extra fees and a certified or cashier’s check, which carries yet another fee, just might be in your future.
Luckily, there are ways to help yourself remember to pay the rent on time.
Automate your rent payment
The simplest effort might be to set up a recurring payment to get funds from your bank to your landlord on time each month. Use a rent service to help you keep the first of the month foremost in your mind by setting an automatic, recurring payment. Intuit SparkRent makes it easy to pay rent online about as quickly and easily as you might make a credit card payment. A recent entry to the field is the Lovely service for rent automation.
Remember it is a must, however, that adequate funds to cover the rent are available in your account before a service makes the rent transfer transaction.
Prioritize (and organize) your bill paying
When you establish your own organized system for keeping up with your financial responsibilities, you are much more likely to remember one of the most important of those debts.
Try separating paper bills in a central spot where you place newly-received bills each day as your return with the daily mail. The key is to prioritize this step EVERY DAY! You can schedule your recurring bills based on when they are due, remembering also when you get paid.
The rent — typically one of the largest single expenses for many people — is a bill you must accommodate at the same time each month. Luckily for your planning purposes, the rate is usually set for the year and doesn’t fluctuate!
You might also consider an app like Check to help you manage your finances from your mobile device.
Enlist some memory help
If you live with others – girlfriend, boyfriend, roommate, family member – why not team up to help each other remember the rent? Two or more heads may be better than one when it comes to showing up with the money.
Set electronic or physical reminders
If you carry a smartphone or even a basic cell phone, you can likely set a monthly reminder to jog your memory when the times comes around to pay the rent. Set a schedule on your personal or work calendar, the one associated with an email address you check without fail each day. If that falls through, stick a sign on your door or near wherever you keep your keys.
Write your own “rent reminder” theme song
You might even compose your own little ditty, a paean to rent payment. The genre of music seems important: a little blues might fit the spirit. After all, Tom Petty has an apartment song.
Five hundred, twenty-five thousand, six hundred… payments? Anyone?
Photo credit: Shutterstock / Microstock Man