number one: pay your bills first

Personal finance websites say you should pay yourself first. So you can, like, save money or something. This probably is good advice when you are not living hand-to-mouth.

For me, the best thing to do is not get behind. Every second Friday, I log into my bank account, pay my bills, make the minimum payment on my student line of credit and send the love of my life my part of the mortgage. The bills are mostly on monthly plans so I pay the same amount every two weeks. For example, our internet / phone bill is $90 per month so I pay $45 every two weeks. Because there are 26 pay periods in a year, this puts me ahead a bit so I can skip paying bills at Christmas. I find this much more manageable than trying to pay them all in one pay period and then make the next paycheque stretch for four weeks.

Not worrying about having the power cut off or feeling like you are drowning in bills is a serious stress reducer.

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