There was a time not so long ago when people were hesitant to pay their bills online. Many people distrusted the security of Internet transactions and viewed online bill payment as a loss of control over their money. If you gave your checking account number to your insurance or utilities provider, what would stop them from overbilling you or maybe even stealing your identity? Somehow, writing checks and stamping envelopes seemed safer, and lots of people clung to that ritual.
So, why should you pay your bills online? For starters, you'll save money -- both on postage and late fees -- as well as time. Online bill payment is also safer than the snail-mail method: Your personal information is much more vulnerable to theft if it's on paper and physically moving through the postal system. You can also use your credit card to pay all your bills, which can make it easier to keep track of financial matters -- and you can earn airline travel miles and other cash-based rewards while you're at it.
There are three main ways to pay your bills online: through your bank, on the biller's site or with a third-party bill payment service. There are advantages and disadvantages to each, so the method you choose depends on your personal preferences. Here five reasons to take the leap and do all your bill-paying online.