Americans More Likely to Pay Bills on Time When Cards Are Accepted
Nearly half (46%) of Americans fail to pay their bills on time.
According to a new report from ACI Worldwide, Americans are more likely to pay bills on time when debit or credit cards are accepted. Of the 46% of respondents who pay bills late, 72% were “very likely” or “extremely likely” to make an on-time payment if the company accepts cards.
The survey, titled U.S. Consumer Payments Experience: A Blueprint for Creating Positive Behaviors, found that 39% of consumers make recurring payments rather making each payment individually. Recurring payments were most common for health insurance, where 57% of respondents have set up automatic payments. Only 43% of participants had automatic payments for higher education (mostly student loans), followed by 41% for mortgages and 38% for auto loans.
Many consumers are frustrated about their bill payment options. Almost half (44%) of respondents were either frustrated or extremely frustrated because they cannot pay a bill with a credit card. A similar 42% said the same about debit cards. Sixty-nine percent said they were frustrated or extremely frustrated because they have to pay a processing fee due to their bill payment method.
Sixty-four percent of consumers face some level of anxiety when thinking about their bills. Only 17% said they can pay unforeseen bills without using a line of credit, while 26% say they can afford that most of the time.
Most Americans say they pay their bills near payday (35%) or when they come in (32%), while 13% say they pay bills on their due dates. However, the frequency of on-time payments varies by bill. For instance, 64% of respondents always pay their mortgage bills on time, compared to 37% who make timely payments on their medical bills.
Overall, consumers want flexibility when it comes to bill payments. Eighty-two percent of survey participants would like a website to have the option to pay bills over time, and 69% say they are likely to make a payment if they can pay via text.