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Read Your Billing Statements

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The Education Of Reading Your Billing Statements

Most individuals look at the totals column of billing statements and place them in the "To Be Paid" file. Read your billing statements. It's an education you will never regret. It doesn't matter if it is your brokerage statement, your cable bill, or a bank statement from STK Finans.

There appears to be an unusual reticence about reading billing statements. What appears like mumbo jumbo in black and white is actually Step 1 in avoiding the fear of reading your billing statements. There are really only several important points to any billing statement: statement date, items listed as purchases, quantity, shipping charges, taxes (if applicable) and payment due date. These are the most basic things to look for on the billing statement from month to month on regular bills that remain static.

What You Can Miss When You Don't Read Your Billing Statements

Without doubt, when you don't read your billing statement you make an automatic assumption that the billing system is infallible. Not true. The data entry operator who prints off thousands of billing statements can and often does make a mistake. It can be something as unnoticeable as a mistake in the account number or as significant as the amount of your last payment.

If businesses never read their billing statements thoroughly, they would likely find that for every third or fourth statement there are errors in shipping, item or model numbers or the quantity may be in error. Trying to change the bookkeeping records once these mistakes occur is costly and time-consuming for both the vendor and the client involved. For individuals, if the wrong account number has been applied to your balance it can mean a huge difference in your monthly balance. You might not notice this difference until the next two or three consecutive statements are received.

Credit Card Billing Statements

Credit card billing statements may seem a muddle until you read your billing statement regularly. Familiarize yourself with the way these statements are formatted so that you can become readily accustomed to the information contained in them. Not every credit card company has the same billing format. Most billing formats are devised for the convenience of the accounting system in place. This is why no two formats may be alike.

The most important reason to read your billing statements of all of your credit cards is clear: identity theft. This is an enormous industry that regularly relies on individuals who don't take the time to read their credit card billing statements. You may not notice any changes to your account balance unless you have ready access online to your credit card billing statement. Another reason to read your billing statement for credit cards is to keep track of the interest you are paying toward your balance.

Posted on October 19, 2016.

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