Being a responsible credit card holder means paying off your bill each month. If you’re late on a bill or forget to pay, you’ll more than likely get hit with late fees and interest from your credit card provider. Follow the tips below to make sure you know exactly when your credit card bill is due each month!
Bill Due vs. Statement Close Dates
The date that the bill is due and the date that your statement closes are different and can sometimes can be confused. With credit cards, your purchases in a certain time period are grouped in what’s called a billing or statement cycle. You can typically find out what your billing cycle is by logging into your online account.
Your billing cycle will be between two dates and will close on the latter date. That means any purchase between the start date and close date are considered in that statement. Let’s look at an example.
|Statement Start Date||Purchases Made||Statement End Date||Bill Due|
|Jan 10th||Feb 9th||Feb 28th|
One of the great perks with a credit card is the flexibility of being able to pay your bill a few weeks after the statement cycle closes - usually 25 days. You’re borrowing money from the credit card issuer for free for that period of time. In my hypothetical example above, your purchases made in your January statement cycle (Jan 10 - Feb 9) are due on the 28th of February.
How to Find Your Bill Due Date
Because of a new law that was passed this year, your bill due date is the same every single month. The next month’s cycle after the one above (Feb 10th - March 9th) would be due on March 28th!
There are three ways to find out when your bill is due:
Most online accounts offer the bill due date and will typically list it as the first thing you see when you log on.
Here’s an example of Chase’s online portal. For understanding when your bill is due and how much to pay, you need to look at when the next payment is due and what the balance on that last statement. To learn about what a current balance is versus your statement balance click here.
In the above screenshot, $1,479.73 is due on August 26, 2017. All purchases made from July 1 - July 30 are included on this August statement cycle.
If your receive paper statements in the mail (uncommon but save the trees and go paperless!) it will also list everything you need to know. Here’s a digital Chase Statement:
Your statement will contain your balance and payment due date, just like in your online account.
Calling the Bank:
When all else fails, call the bank! On the back of your credit card should be a customer service number. Give them a ring and ask about when your bills are due.
Paying your bill on time is the only way to make sure you’re earning rewards and not paying interest and fees. A good practice is to either set reminders on your calendar for when you bill is due or set up autopay! Remember - paying your bill on time can lead to a good credit score, increase in credit line, less financial headaches and avoid fees.