There is a superstition in my family that in order to have a good year, your home must be completely cleaned by midnight on December 31st. So I spent that day clearing out my closet, dusting off my bookshelves, and eventually tackling the infamous junk drawer. Heaping stacks of old mail, unopened envelopes, bills, and notifications that I opened once and then never looked at again. The mess inspired me to make my resolution to go greener by reducing the amount of paper coming into my home.
As I was researching paperless options for my monthly bills, I found some interesting facts[i]. Did you know that if only 20% of American households switched from paper to electronic bills, we would use seven million fewer trash bags and save 150 million pounds of paper per year?
There are also benefits to online tools that extend beyond the ozone. For example:
- Convenience – It’s so convenient having the ability to view and update my accounts from my computer or smart phone at any time, rather than having to wait for operating hours to speak with someone in customer service.
- Saving money – Not only do most companies offer discounts for enrolling in e-options, automatic pay plans also help to avoid late fees.
Despite the positive aspects, many users are hesitant about utilizing online options, mainly due to security concerns. However, most companies require no more information than you would give them if you were to hand them a paper check. In fact, according to NACHA[ii], the Electronic Payments Association, e-checks and paperless billing are often more secure because the paper checks and billing statements, which contain personal information, pass through fewer hands and therefore have less opportunities to be exposed to risks like fraud and identity theft.
After all the research, I decided to take the plunge and sign up for the online options provided by my various utility and insurance companies. Contact your independent agent today to see what options your insurance carrier offers for you to go green.
Here’s to a greener 2018!
For more information on the benefits of choosing E-billing, read E-asy Button – Go Paperless.
[i] Green Savings Calculator | “Cut Out Paper Usage” Infographic. – 2016 Fiserv, Inc. Retrieved from payitgreen.org.
[ii] Direct Payment for Consumers | Electronic Payments – 2018 NACHA, The Electronic Payments Association. – Retrieved from https://electronicpayments.nacha.org/direct-payment/consumers/direct-payment-consumers#dp-con-security.