Did you know you can change when your bills are due? You sure can. Most of them have a grace period and many companies will let you move your due date. You can see ahead to when you’ll have a cash flow issue using Thinkflow’s financial health dashboard to avoid going negative or incurring an overdraft fee on your checking account.
Spot your upcoming bills with Thinkflo
After you log into Thinkflow, navigate to your personal dashboard by clicking the “Financial Health” tab at the top.
Then, scroll down to the cash flow calendar. You can select your transactions on a calendar or list view. On either view, you’ll see a blue dot for each day you’re projected to have income and an orange dot on days you usually have expenses. You can also see your projected bank account balance each day.
This is an easy way to spot upcoming trouble before it happens. If your balance is projected to be low or negative, you can find ways to avoid it with Thinkflow.
If there’s a day you have both an orange dot and a low or negative balance, click the dot to see what the projected expense is.
Depending on the bill, you might be able to move it to another day that better suits your cash flow and prevents your checking account balance from dropping too low or going negative, which could cause overdraft or late fees.
Take advantage of grace periods
Before you move a bill, ask if there’s a grace period where your bill will still be considered “on time” before it causes late fees.
Depending on the bill, you may have a few extra days or weeks to get your payment in before late fees accrue. Call the company you owe and find out how long you have to make a payment before they add penalties to your bill.
And even if there isn’t an official grace period, it’s worth a call to ask if you can get one anyway. If you’re only a few days late, you might get approval to postpone your due date. This is especially worth trying if it’s a one-time occurrence and you have an otherwise good payment history.
See if you can change your due date
If there’s not a grace period, you payee might be willing to move your due date.
For example, many auto lenders will let you move when your auto loan payment is due. Some lenders allow you to bump your payment by two full weeks. That could give you time to get another paycheck or come up with the money in time so you don’t incur late, overdraft or other fees.
Many credit card companies are also flexible with due dates and some offer easy online solutions to change your payment dates that take just a few minutes. If you can change your due date, that means the specific bill has what we will refer to as a variable due date.
Some common bills with variable due dates include:
- Car loans
- Credit cards
- Student loans
- Utilities like electricity, gas, water, etc.
And companies with fixed due dates usually include mortgages, rent, and HOA dues. Be sure to ask if you will incur any charges for moving your due date.
Thinkflow makes it easy to look ahead at your cash flow. Your ideal cash flow should have payments occur when you have cash available from your income.
Thinkflow helps you identify payments that may pose a problem with your cash flow being positive. For those payments, determine if there is a grace period that may allow you to pay it another time. If not, contact the payee and see if you can change the due date. If you are able to do so, input the new date in Thinkflow to see how that improves your cash flow.