Sometimes paying your bills gets left off your to do list, or perhaps you’re struggling financially this month, and you end up falling behind on your payments. While mistakes happen, it’s really important that you get back on track as soon as you can, to prevent more problems further down the line.
Luckily, there are several things you can do if you’ve missed a payment and need help paying your cable and internet bill. Our easy-to-follow guide includes tips on keeping your payments under control and how to pay your bills on time.
Cable and internet bill assistance – before you miss a payment
Waiting until you’ve missed a payment isn’t the best idea. You should really be talking to your provider beforehand, if you think you’re going to have problems paying your cable and internet bill.
Talking to the biller about your situation could help you secure a more affordable payment schedule and avoid missed payment fees. That’s why it’s worth starting the conversation as soon as you know there’s likely to be an issue.
If you know you won’t be able to pay your cable internet bill this month, you should:
- Call the provider – most billers have dedicated teams to help you with your payment schedule, so make sure you get in touch as soon as possible. If you’re having cash flow problems and you’ll have the money a couple days later, your provider may be able to extend your payment window, or freeze any fees.
- Reach out for support – many states have support services to help if you’re having a hard time, so look into what’s available in your area. You may qualify for a low income utility support grant, for instance. Debt counselling may also be available to help you plan your finances better and address any current issues.
- Get tough with your spending – if you’re only going to be a few dollars short paying your cable bill and you’ve got a little time before your bill’s due, it’s time to get tough on your spending. Every cent counts, so look at any non-essentials in your budget and see where you could save some money.
Cable and internet bill assistance – when you’ve missed a deadline
Even if you’ve already missed a payment, now’s not the time to bury your head in the sand. Get in touch with your biller as soon as you can to arrange how you’re going to straighten things out to make sure a missed payment has as little long-term effect as possible.
If your account goes into collections, that’s when things get serious, whether that’s the effect on your credit or potential legal action. If a deadline for your cable and internet bill has passed, it’s important that you:
- Don’t panic – though missing a bill can be stressful, it doesn’t have to have a long-term effect – one missed bill payment could be a minor blip. Keep calm and remember that there are several things to do to make sure that you don’t miss another payment the following month.
- Contact the biller – we’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, let your biller know as soon as you know there’s likely to be a problem. Being open and honest is key if you want to minimize the impact on your finances, and perhaps negotiate a new payment plan with your provider that works better for you.
- Make a plan to stop it happening again – just like doing housework and laundry, paying your cable and internet bills should be part of your routine. Whether it’s setting aside an hour a week to manage your expenses or visiting Money Services to pay your bills every time you’re grocery shopping, a routine can help organize your finances.
Tips to help pay cable and internet bills on time
Sometimes keeping your bill payments on track isn’t about having enough cash to cover them, it’s about having a regular routine and knowing what needs paying and when. If you want to avoid issues with your cable internet bills, here are a few tips to help:
- Be proactive – there’s no point burying your head in the sand. If you know you need help paying your cable and internet bills, take action early and ask for help. The sooner you speak to the biller to explain the situation, the quicker you may find a solution to the issue.
- Know what needs to be paid when – write down everything you need to pay each month, starting with food, utilities and rent payments, then moving onto non-essentials, then take that away from the money you have coming in. What’s left is what you’re free to spend. Then, when you want to buy something, you know if it’s in your budget or not.
- Have a system and a routine – it might be sticky notes on paper bills with the dates you need to pay, or a setting a reminder on your phone to dedicate some time to deal with bills each week. However you do it, having a system is key to keeping on top of what needs to be paid and when.
- Find a way of paying bills that works for you – do you go to the store at the same time each week? Why not use your trip for groceries as a chance to pay your bills? You can pay bills quickly and easily at Money Services within your local Kroger Family of Stores, with many billers crediting your payment instantly. Plus, you can pay multiple services in one visit, making it super simple to organize your finances.
So, while missing a bill payment can happen to anyone, it’s best to avoid it if you can. Planning your budget, having a plan for paying your bills and making it part of your routine is key to staying on track and keeping your connection to cable and internet uninterrupted.
Want to keep your bill payments regular and on time? Find your local Money Services store to pay your cable and internet bills while you shop.