How automating your finances can hurt you, a personal story

I've long been a fan of automating your finances. There's a bit of freedom and a sense of accomplishment that comes from knowing you'll never have to pay a late fee again.

Unfortunately, if you don't pay attention this can come back to bite you in more ways than one.

Starting several months ago when I started writing for Notebooks.com I found myself spending more time working and less time tending to my finances, but I didn't give it too much thought since I had automated almost all of my payments, credit cards included, so that I would never be late.

Well in the rush of things I forgot about the one thing that wasn't part of my automated finances: debt reduction. When I checked the balance on my credit card I found that I had missed paying anything other than the minimum for the last three months because I got too busy.

Thankfully there's an easy solution to this problem since I found a new, to me at least, option with the auto-pay feature of my credit card.

Instead of being limited to paying the minimum or the bill in full I can now choose to pay the minimum plus a fixed amount. Now, it's easier than before to budget – and automate my credit card payments so I can avoid late fees and pay down my debt.