If you have not starting taking advantage of your bank's online services, you should! Online banking has many advantages over traditional banking:

1. Download Banking Transactions. You can download your banking transactions directly into your financial software as often as you like. If you use your ATM card often, this is a must, because it keeps your bank balance current in your financial software. You will not have to worry about keeping all those debit card receipts.

2. Download Credit Card Transactions. You can download credit card transactions directly into your financial software. Do not waste time entering credit card charges by hand – download them! This is probably one of the biggest advantages of online banking, since entering credit card transactions can usually be very time consuming.

3. Online Bill Payment. Online bill payment is easier and less expensive than generating and mailing a paper check. Your bank may offer free bill pay services – if so, this saves the expense of ordering checks and buying stamps. Checks will be generated and processed by your bank at your authorization. Plus, the checks will have the vendor names directly on your bank statements, next to the amount of the check and check number. This is not true for traditional checks.

4. Quickly Verify Bank Balances. If you need to verify your bank account balance, just signin to your bank's online services. No more waiting for the bank statement, or calling the bank to get your balance. To get an accurate balance, take the bank's balance as shown online, subtract any outstanding checks, and add any outstanding deposits.

5. Quit Paying Bills. Use your vendor's auto-debit or auto-charge feature. Once established, your bill will be paid automatically through your bank or credit card account. This eliminates the step of manually paying the bill! Perfect for gas, electric, water, cable, phone, and other utility-type payments.

Save yourself time and money by taking advantage of online banking. Call your bank and credit card companies today to find out how to enroll in their online services.

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