Majority of Quebecers have paid bills late yet they are calm about missed
payments

- TD Canada Trust offers tips and advice to help pay bills on time -

MONTREAL, July 15 /CNW Telbec/ - Have you ever forgotten to pay a bill on time, missed the due date or misplaced a bill? If you have, you are not alone. These are the top three reasons that people in Quebec give for why they have missed paying their bills, according to the TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Poll.

The majority of Canadians report feeling anxious or stressed when they miss payments (53%), yet the majority of Quebecers report that they are calm and that it doesn't really matter if they miss a payment (53% versus 41% nationally). Quebecers may be overlooking the implications of missed bill payments. More than a third of respondents think that there is no consequence if they miss a bill payment - that they just pay the overdue amount on their next bill.

"If you routinely miss your bill payments each month, it can impact your credit rating," says Christine Marchildon, Senior Vice President, Quebec Region, TD Canada Trust. "Missing payments by more than 30 days could influence your likelihood to secure a future loan or a credit card because credit-granting companies look at past performance on bill payments as an indicator of future behaviour. It is essential to pay your bills on time. Why jeopardize your ability to access credit in the future?"

Marchildon recommends the following five tips to avoid late bill payments:

    
    1. Have your bills sent to you electronically. It can be easier to keep
       track of than stacks of paper. And it is more environmentally-friendly
       too.
    2. Set-up pre-authorized withdrawals from your everyday bank account for
       your utilities and other bills
    3. Set-up an automatic transfer to pay your credit card's minimum or
       total balance each month so that you can be sure to never miss a
       payment
    4. Avoid the hassle and cost of finding envelopes, cheques and stamps by
       paying your bills online or over the phone or at an ABM - this can
       easily save you $50 a year
    5. Post-date your online bill payments for a few days before the due date
       to allow time for processing. Why give away your money before it is
       necessary?
    

"Paying interest and late charges on missed bills, even a few times a year, is like throwing money away," says Marchildon. "One of the easiest ways to save money and protect your credit score, is to pay bills on time and online. Make sure you have the right everyday bank account - it should include features and services that help make it easy for you to pay your bills on time, keep your payments organized and avoid interest and late charges. If not, you should consider making a change."

How do Quebecers pay their bills?

According to the TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Poll, online banking is the most popular method of paying bills (62%). The second most popular method of payment is pre-authorized payment from a chequing account (54%). Quebecers are the most likely in the country to choose bill payment at an ABM (36% versus 22% nationally).

Although the majority choose to pay their bills online, 88% of people in Quebec still receive their bills by mail.

Thirty-three percent of Quebecers pay their bills at a bank branch and 23% say they still prefer to pay bills by cheque. Only 10% say that payment over the phone is their preferred method.

When do Quebecers pay their bills?

Only 31% say that they pay their bills as close to the due date as possible. Fifty-seven per cent pay their bills as they come in and 12% collect all their bills each month and pay them at the same time.

Who pays the bills?

Sixty-five per cent of Quebecers say that they are responsible for paying the household bills. Another 21% say that they share the responsibility with their partner and 11% say that their partner pays the bills.

Among those married or common-law, 34% say the bills are paid mainly by the wife and 35% are paid mainly by the husband. Only 32% of couples say that they equally share the bill payments.

About the TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Campaign

TD Canada Trust is offering an incentive for new customers who switch to TD Canada Trust. If new customers open a Select Service or Infinity Chequing Account, add its convenient banking services, and get approved for an eligible TD Canada Trust Credit Card by July 23, 2010, then TD Canada Trust will give the new customer a $250 Cash Bonus. For more information about the promotion visit www.tdcanadatrust.com or call 1-800-387-8550.

About the TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Poll

The TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Poll surveyed 1,002 adult Canadians, including 244 from Quebec, between May 18-26, 2010. Results for this study were collected through Environics Research Group's national omnibus study.

About TD Bank Financial Group

The year 2010 marks the 150th anniversary of TD Bank Financial Group in Quebec. TDBFG has built on a long tradition of quality client service and community involvement that dates back to the opening of the first branch in Quebec in 1860. Today, TDBFG's Quebec presence includes over 4,000 employees and 125 offices and points of service, as well as significant investments in community programs.

The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Financial Group. TD Bank Financial Group is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves more than 18 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD Bank Financial Group also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 6 million online customers. TD Bank Financial Group had CDN$574 billion in assets on April 30, 2010. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.

SOURCE TD Bank Group

For further information: For further information: Karen Lafleur, TD Bank Financial Group, 514 850-2832, karen.lafleur@tdinsurance.com; Charles Durivage, Morin Public Relations, 514 289-8688, ext. 227, charlesd@morinrp.com


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