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Over 50% of Americans Don’t Know How Much They’re Spending on Recurring Payments

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By Dawn Allcot  April 16, 2021

Chase Bank recently studied the current state of recurring payments and discovered that 78% of survey respondents have at least one recurring subscription, while 50% have at least three. Whereas the 70% said they like recurring payments because they make it easier to manage their money, 55% don’t keep track of how much money is debited from their account for recurring payments each month.

See: 35 Useless Expenses You Need to Slash From Your Budget Now
Find: How to Save Money — 10 Proven Tips to Build Your Savings

Even worse, 60% of survey respondents said they have forgotten about at least one recurring payment, and 71% said they probably waste over $50 per month in recurring subscriptions they don’t need or use any more.

“By pinpointing funds that are escaping due to forgotten, unused or unwanted subscriptions and payments, cardmembers can reallocate those to services they actually want,” said a Chase spokesperson.

However, once you do spot those recurring payments, they might be a hassle to cancel. The survey found that 56% of people say it takes them about three months to track down and cancel unwanted recurring payments.

See: 9 Bills You Should Never Put on Autopay
Find: 30 Essential Money Habits

Taking time to do so can really pay off, according to the Chase spokesperson. “In the past year, 60% of survey respondents reportedly took extra time to review their finances, including their recurring payments, more carefully,” the spokesperson said. “Fifty-three percent of those who chose to reevaluate their recurring payments realized there were more important things to spend their money on, including catching up on bills.”

Chase recently introduced a new service to help Chase cardmembers track where their credit card information is stored digitally. The Saved account manager, available via the Chase Mobile app, shows customers where their cards’ information has been stored. Customers can get additional details about the businesses and any recurring charges assigned to their cards.

“By detecting potential unwanted charges and getting a better handle on the places where card information may be stored and in use, consumers may be able to reallocate funds that they were previously unaware of,” said the Chase spokesperson.

See: Spring Cleaning — Useless Subscriptions You Need to Cancel Now
Find: 5 Lifestyle Changes You Can Make Now To Secure Your Financial Future

Additionally, keeping better tabs on your saved credit card account numbers can help you reduce the risk of fraud or, in the unfortunate event you’ve fallen victim to fraud, it can help you spot it faster.

“From a security standpoint, it’s imperative to understand where credit card information is stored,” said the spokesperson. “It allows consumers to better track the way money flows in and out of their account so they can identify irregular charges or a change in payments.”

The spokesperson continued, “Ultimately, taking inventory of where and what you are paying can help identify funds that could be reallocated to where it may matter most — groceries, new subscriptions, paying down debt or even to savings. The bottom line is that with more visibility into their digital financial footprint, cardmembers can better control, monitor and manage their money how they see fit.”

About the Author

Dawn Allcot

Dawn Allcot is a full-time freelance writer and content marketing specialist who geeks out about finance, e-commerce, technology, and real estate. Her lengthy list of publishing credits include Bankrate, Lending Tree, and Chase Bank. She is the founder and owner of GeekTravelGuide.net, a travel, technology, and entertainment website. She lives on Long Island, New York, with a veritable menagerie that includes 2 cats, a rambunctious kitten, and three lizards of varying sizes and personalities – plus her two kids and husband. Find her on Twitter, @DawnAllcot.

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Michigan license number:   DM-0016282 Available to the public and licensed in Michigan.

Section 13(1)  When a licensee establishes a debt management plan for a debtor, the licensee may charge and receive an initial fee of $50.00

Section 13(2)  A licensee shall attempt to obtain consent to participate in a debt management plan from at least 51%, in number or dollar amount, of the debtor’s creditors within 90 days after establishing the debt management plan. If the required consent is not actually received by the licensee, the licensee shall provide notice to the debtor of the lack of required consent and the debtor may, at its option, close the account. If the debtor decides to close the account, any unexpended funds shall be returned to the debtor or disbursed as directed by the debtor.

Sec. 14. (1) A contract between a licensee and debtor shall include all of the following:

(a) Each creditor to which payments will be made and the amount owed each creditor. A licensee may rely on records of the debtor and other information available to it to determine the amount owed to a creditor.

(b) The total amount of the licensee’s charges.

(c) The beginning and termination dates of the contract.

(d) The principal amount and approximate interest charges of the debtor’s obligations to be paid under the debt management plan.

(e) The name and address of the licensee and of the debtor.

(f) Any other provisions or disclosures that the director determines are necessary for the protection of the debtor and the proper conduct of business by a licensee.

Sec. 18. (1) In addition to the fee described in section 13(1), a licensee may charge a reasonable fee for providing debt management services under a debt management plan. The fee under this subsection shall not exceed 15% of the amount of the debt to be liquidated during the express term of the plan.

(2) A licensee may offer a debtor the option to purchase credit reports or educational materials and products, and charge a fee to the debtor if the debtor elects to purchase any of those items from the licensee.  Fees charged under this subsection are not subject to the 15% limitation on fees described in subsection (1).

(3) Except for a cancellation described in subsection (4), in the event of cancellation of or default in the performance of the contract by the debtor before its successful completion, a licensee may collect $25.00 in addition to any fees and charges of the licensee previously received by the licensee. This $25.00 fee is not subject to the 15% limitation on fees and charges under subsection (1).

(4) A contract is in effect when it is signed by the licensee and the debtor and the debtor has made a payment of any amount to the licensee. The debtor has the right to cancel the contract until 12 midnight of the third business day after the first day the contract is in effect by delivering written notice of cancellation to the licensee. A cancellation described in this section is not subject to, and a licensee shall not collect, the fee described in subsection (3).

(5) If a debtor fails to make a payment of any amount to a licensee within 60 days after the date a payment is due under a contract, the licensee may, in its discretion, cancel the debt management contract if it determines that the plan is no longer suitable for the debtor, the debtor fails to affirmatively communicate to the licensee the debtor’s desire to continue the plan, or the creditors of the debtor refuse to continue accepting payments under the plan.

(6) A licensee shall not contract for, receive, or charge a debtor an amount greater than authorized by this act. A person that violates this subsection, except as the result of an inadvertent clerical or computer error, shall return to the debtor the amount of the payments received from or on behalf of the debtor and not distributed to creditors, and, as a penalty, an amount equal to the amount overcharged.

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