I overpay, it is true…

So I’m not sure if this is a dirty confession, or just something that I feel like sharing.

But I overpay my water bill. By a LOT.

Why?

I mean, why wouldn’t I want to put the extra money that I put on my water bill into my debt? Or spend it? Or put it into my emergency fund?

Well, I’ll tell you why. I HATE variable expenses. It is true. It is impossible for me to budget them, so I just don’t.

First it was both electricity and water that were variable every month. Then I called up the electric company and got myself some sweet-ass budget billing. They estimated how much I pay over a year in my apartment, divided that by 12, and I pay that every month for 11 months. Then in the 12th month I either pay less or more (depending on how much I went under or over my anticipated usage). The fun thing about this is that it is a CHALLENGE for me every month to use a small enough amount of electricity such that I won’t have to pay anything in that 12th month.

Now, I started doing this with my water. Normally my water bill ranges from $20-35/month (depending on how much I’m at home, how much I cook, how many loads of laundry I do that month, ect). Well, I decided that I’d just pay the maximum that I know it will be ($40/month). What does this mean? Well, I just got my water bill today and I have a credit of $58 on my account. Hot damn!

So what’s the point? Why am I do excited about a credit on my water bill? Well, for the same reason I’m stoked about not having to pay for my electricity for a month. This credit gives me a little bit of a buffer if FOR ANY REASON I can’t pay my water bill one month. It also feels really nice not OWING money, perhaps it is a psychological benefit. I just love over paying my reoccurring bills and knowing that in some month I DON’T have to pay it and that money can be used for something fun (like my credit card payment, or my E-fund, lol, so much fun).

Do you intentionally overpay bills you don’t have to? Why? Why not?

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5 Responses to I overpay, it is true…

  1. Jessie says:

    I’ve never thought of overpaying for something on purpose. It does sound like there is a good physiological benefit there.

    i had no idea that you could ask your utility companies to put you on a ‘budget plan’ – I’m wondering if ours would be willing to consider that at all.

    • SS4BC says:

      Most electricity companies offer it – especially in states where there are cold winters and electricity charges can fluxuate so much. You usually have to live in your place for a year (or at least the electric company here did). The other thing you can do is simply average it out for yourself and overpay in the months where the bill is typically lower. That way you have a credit on the account come winter.

      But, that said, I would check out the website for your electric company, chances are very good that they offer something of this nature – they just don’t like to advertise it. =)

  2. Okturn delMoniq says:

    WOW! Great idea! I’ve toyed with the idea of getting my gas on a budget plan, because paying for the heat is a BITCH in the winter. I never really thought of just paying more than the bill each time. I may have to implement that in the future. Not having to pay one of the utilities for a month would be such an awesome thing!

    Good job SS4BC for inspiring me yet again. =)

  3. Steve in W MA says:

    I sometimes overpay my credit card account that I use for monthly expenditures going into the new month so I don’t have to wait for their billing statement to pay the bill. By overpaying by $100 or $200 I know I’m covered, will have a credit balance with them instead of a debt, and don’t have to wait for the bill or go back online to see it on the billing date to pay off my charges.

  4. Pingback: Bill Overpayment « Small Steps for Big Change

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