Don’t throw away money by letting unused memberships continually withdrawal from your account.
With so many different companies and services charging a recurring fee for upgrades or service (yes, including ClearCheckbook), there are bound to be some that you’ve forgotten about and don’t use. Cancelling these unused services can potentially save you a lot of money.
Some of these recurring fees will be from companies you recognize, like a monthly Netflix or Hulu charge. Others might be for services you no longer use, like if you have an Xbox live or Playstation Network account that you don’t use. You might have simply forgotten about some like a gym membership that you signed up for at the beginning of the year and haven’t used in a while. The hardest to catch are ones that you didn’t even know you signed up for or were tricked into when entering your billing information online. Keep an eye out for fees from companies that you don’t recognize.
How can you find these recurring membership fees? The easiest way is to stay on top of entering your transactions into ClearCheckbook and Jiving them against your bank statement. If you follow the instructions in our Jiving walkthrough
then you’ve probably already found some.
If you’re just getting started with ClearCheckbook or you import your transactions via our Import Transactions tool, looking for these transactions is as easy as going through the last few months of your bank statements looking for fees from companies you don’t recognize or for services you no longer use. Remember that some services renew annually while others can renew monthly. Regularly keeping an eye on your transactions will ensure you catch any of these quickly.
What should you do when you find one of these charges? Don’t immediately file a chargeback with your credit card company against the recurring fees you don’t want. Doing so actually violates how chargebacks should be handled and can result in the chargeback being reversed and the billings continue. Instead, make sure you attempt to contact the company either via email or phone first. If you can retain proof of this attempted contact or the company responses and they still refuse to cancel your membership then you’re well within your rights to file a chargeback.
Have you found any tricky hidden recurring fees on your statements? If so, let us know in the comments below so others can be aware of them!
This is part of our weekly Money Management Tips
series that aims to help you take more control of your finances. This series gives tips on everything from tracking your spending to improving your credit score.