Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Costs of Not Paying Attention

I am the kind of person who believes that everyone must manage every aspect of their lives. Am I good at it? No. I do not pay enough attention to my weight for instance.

However I do pay attention to my bills, as to when they are due, whether there are charges that I do not recognize on my credit card, the tax calendar, my car, the tires and fluids and etc.

Yesterday a friend of mine called and she told me she had found out several charges on her credit card statements that she did not recognize and that this had been going on for a while.

This has happened to me only once. The crooks charge your card with a small amount pretending that they are one of the 3 large telecom companies. If it goes unnoticed, it becomes an automated charge on your credit card.

I check my credit card transactions almost daily because the earlier you challenge a charge, the easier it is to get rid of it. It has happened to me once but I immediately recognized it since I do not do business with that particular operator. Even if I did, I would have still recognized it since I use one bank to make automated payments for those types of expenses. I do not use my credit card.

I asked her whether she has a system to follow up on payments, upcoming expenses, savings etc. She said she did not. She asked me whether she could use my system. She is very welcome to use it but over time I have added several formulas, graphs and etc to it so she has to know how those work.

I told her that once I get back from my travel over the weekend, I would sit down and help her with my chart so that she can use it. The key word is to "use" here. Unless you put in every single bill on it, you can never be sure of what is happening. I do not track my monthly grocery expenses. I just have a lump sum amount that would take care of groceries, eating out and non-food items. It is a set amount and I take great care not to exceed it. If I have money left over for that category, it goes to savings at the end of a particular month.

I hope my friend can deal with those charges and get them lifted.


  1. I look at my bank account and my debit chard charges every morning. I have been hacked a few times, but always know right away if something is wrong. I couldn't imagine not paying attention. I'm too controlling, I guess.