Bills can take all shapes and sizes, and you can gather them from anywhere. The recommended approach when you get a bill is to pay it as soon as possible, as there may be late payment fees included.
Often when planning and budgeting for the future, there are a few bills that slip under the radar. This makes it all the more important to take your time to make sure you have every bill covered.
The list of bills can include:
Internet, phone and TV Bills
Mortgage or Rental Bills
How well you pay your debts forms part of your reputation. Not only with people you know personally, but also with banks and lenders. Companies providing utilities, phones, insurance and finance share their billing data with credit reference agencies. This is what creates your credit profile and credit score. In turn landlords, mortgage company’s, lenders, employers and others rely on your credit profile to decide if they want to deal with you.
Paying your bills is important and not doing so can have a large and far reaching impact.
My video on budgeting should help you – take a look
This is a tax paid to your local authority. This money goes towards the funding of various public services, for example rubbish collection, parks, the emergency services and many other essential services .
The amount of council tax that you pay is determined by where you live, and the type of property you live in. There are ‘bands’ ranging from A to H, and which band your property is in decides your council tax rate. It is easy to check your council tax band on the government website.
However, some groups of people are exempt from council tax in differing circumstances. These include, but aren’t limited to, students, care leavers, and live-in-carers. But you should always check if your circumstances could mean that you are either exempt or have a reduced council tax bill.
What if you don’t pay?
If you only miss one payment, this could lead to you having to pay the whole years tax in one go. If you fail to pay your council tax bill, this may lead to the council taking legal action, with loss of your possessions, and in some cases even prison.
Internet, Phone and TV Bills
These bills are fairly self explanatory. Having internet access in your home, or a mobile phone in your hand, is no longer optional. The best port of call is to check comparison websites to find the best deal for you, as you definitely don’t want to be paying over the odds for a package that isn’t right for you.
Additionally, along with paying for any streaming services you may have, you also need a TV licence. A TV licence allows you to watch or record any live TV, as well as allowing you to watch programmes on BBC iPlayer. This is the law, and there are checks to make sure people have the appropriate licencing.
Utility bills are for gas, water and electricity. These are monthly bills that, if you’re not careful, can end up being very expensive. Using comparison sites can help you find the best deal for you, and don’t be afraid to shop around.
Your energy provider will estimate how much electricity and gas you will use over the course of a year. They will then break this into monthly payments to prevent you paying much larger bills over winter. However, many properties have a meter that tells both you and the energy company how much gas or electricity you use. This means that if you use more or less energy that has been estimated, your energy provider will be able to adjust your bills. If you don’t have a meter there are many other ways to pay. For example, your provider may send you an exact bill which you will then have a set time to pay.
You can take steps to reduce your energy bill. For example, when you are buying or renting a property, you should be provided with an energy performance certificate. This will tell you how energy efficient your property is, and so will tell you if you are wasting energy. Essentially, the better insulated your property, the better the rating you will get, and so the more money you will save. As well as that, just taking simple steps such as not leaving taps running, turning off lights whenever possible, or using low energy light bulbs can help you save money on bills.
There are some more drastic steps you could take. These could include buying and installing solar panels on your property to generate your own energy, or using alternative sources of energy. However, these can be quite expensive in the short run, and so might not be possible.
Insurance allows you to have some level of security, as it may allow you to claim money back on damaged, stolen or lost property. However, it is very important to read the fine print when taking out insurance.
Insurance is useful in a wide variety of situations, and for some it is required. For example, most mortgage providers require you to have insurance on your home. For a little extra you can cover your possessions. This would cover both the property and items you own, like your phone or bike. If you are renting, then normally you would only need insurance that covers your possessions, as you wouldn’t own the property.
One thing to be careful of is how much excess you would have to pay. Different insurance providers demand different excess. This is the amount of money you would have to pay in case of any claim. For example, if you have an excess of £100, and you have to replace your phone costing £700, then you would have to pay £100 and the insurance would pay the rest. When you are taking out insurance you must check what exactly it will cover.
Mortgage and Rental Bills
These are slightly more obvious, if you are renting a property then you have to maintain payments. If you fall behind on payments, you could face being evicted. However, some landlords may attempt to take advantage of a perceived lack of knowledge, so make sure you understand what are your responsibilities with regards to maintaining the property, and what falls on the landlords. For example, it is the landlords responsibility to fit, test and maintain fire and smoke detectors on the property.
If you take out a mortgage when buying a property, you must also keep up with these payments. If you fall behind on payments, your property is at risk. There may also be higher levels of interest included with a mortgage, so check with your mortgage provider to make sure you never fall behind. If you have a problem, discuss it with your lender straight away – never bury your head in the sand.
There are so many bills that you may be worried you won’t be able to keep track of them. This is where budgeting can be very useful, helping you look after your hard earned cash. Read the post on budgeting to learn more.
Promise Money is a broker not a lender. Therefore we offer lenders representing the whole of market for mortgages, secured loans, bridging finance, commercial mortgages and development finance. These loans are secured on property and subject to the borrowers status.
More than 50% of borrowers receive offers better than our representative examples
The %APR rate you will be offered is dependent on your personal circumstances.
Mortgages and Remortgages
Borrow £270,000 over 300 months at 7.1% APRC representative at a fixed rate of 4.79% for 60 months at £1,539.39 per month and thereafter 240 instalments of £2050.55 at 8.49% or the lender’s current variable rate at the time. The total charge for credit is £317,807.66 which includes £2,500 advice / processing fees and £125 application fee. Total repayable £587,807.66
Secured / Second Charge Loans
Borrow £62,000 over 180 months at 9.9% APRC representative at a fixed rate of 7.85% for 60 months at £622.09 per month and thereafter 120 instalments of £667.54 at 9.49% or the lender’s current variable rate at the time. The total charge for credit is £55,730.20 which includes £2,660 advice / processing fees and £125 application fee. Total repayable £117,730.20
Annual Interest Rate (fixed) is 49.7% p.a. with a Representative 49.7% APR, based on borrowing £5,000 and repaying this over 36 monthly repayments. Monthly repayment is £243.57 with a total amount repayable of £8,768.52 which includes the total interest repayable of £3,768.52.
THINK CAREFULLY BEFORE SECURING OTHER DEBTS AGAINST YOUR HOME
REPAYING YOUR DEBTS OVER A LONGER PERIOD CAN REDUCE YOUR PAYMENTS BUT COULD INCREASE THE TOTAL INTEREST YOU PAY. YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON A MORTGAGE OR ANY OTHER DEBT SECURED ON IT.
Promise Money is a trading style of Promise Solutions Ltd – Company number 04822774Promise Solutions, Fullard House, Neachells Lane, Wolverhampton, WV11 3QG
Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority – Number 681423The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate some forms of commercial / buy-to-let mortgages
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