What working Mom hasn’t gone through a company restructuring at one point in her career? You may get a new manager, your job responsibilities may change, or you may even end up with a severance package. That’s from an employee’s perspective. But from a corporate perspective, the point is to make the company run more efficiently by restructuring to reduce wasted time, money or other resources.
The same concept applies at home. Let’s face it, as working Moms time is our most valuable commodity. We can’t afford to use it inefficiently: time with our kids is at stake. We need a restructuring.
If we’re honest with ourselves, we can probably find a number of ways to cut waste in the time department. But, for now, we’ll focus on cutting the time spent on handling home finances. Wouldn’t it be great if you never had to spend any time paying bills, balancing the checkbook, worrying about late charges or arguing with your spouse over whose job it was to make sure the mortgage bill got paid? It wouldn’t only save time; it would save stress and your marriage too.
My husband and I recently restructured our home finances and now we spend only one day a year reviewing our finances. Imagine the time that affords us to play with our kids! It is a very simple process that anyone can do.
First, we took an inventory of every bill we receive each month. Then, we set them all up for auto-pay, which is easy to do online. We happen to enjoy benefiting from credit card rewards without ever paying interest, so we set up as many of our bills as possible to be paid with our credit cards, and then set up our credit card balances to be automatically paid in full by our checking account each month. And, voila! No late charges, no interest paid, no need to even keep a mental note that something is due, and we earn credit card rewards by filtering our household bills through credit cards before paying them in full.
For those bills that don’t come with bells and whistles, like websites with online payment options, we use Online Bill-Pay from our checking account and set those up for automatic recurrent checks to be issued.
For example, I have my electric bill set to automatically charge the balance each month to my HiltonHonors American Express card (hotel rewards). My Amex is, in turn, set to have the full balance automatically paid from my checking account every month. I’m keeping my electric bill current, earning hotel rewards, and building credit. My son’s daycare, on the other hand, is a small operation with no credit card option, so I set up a recurrent automatic check issuance from my checking account. They really appreciate the prompt, reliable payment each month and I’m happy I don’t have to remember to bring my checkbook.