August 30th, 2010

Review: BillFloat – Can’t Pay Your Bills? They Have you Covered (For A Fee)

163 Comments | Twitter | |

billfloat

It’s the 1st of the month and time to pay the bills. After unexpected medical bills or some other financial emergency bungled your budget earlier this month, you realize there’s a bill or two your funds can’t cover. What do you do? You float it.

BillFloat, founded in 2009 and incubated by PayPal, has a simple, fresh solution to an old problem—what to do when you can’t pay the bills.

Instead of turning to Mom and Dad, friends, expensive payday loans, high-interest bank loans, or skipping payment altogether and risking the consequences (penalties, credit damage, getting services terminated), BillFloat pays your bill for a fee as low as $4.99 and you pay them back within 30 days. Plus, the site requires no credit checks and uses its own “decisioning engine” to determine qualified customers.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Sign up as a BillFloat customer for free, where you provide basic contact information as well as social security number, banking routing, account number, and bank username and password. This information is required to verify your bank account to ensure your ability to repay. BillFloat also assures that they use the same financial security and data protection that big banks.
  2. Select from over 3,000 billers in the database, such as cable providers and insurance companies, to pay your bill direct to them. Input your bill amount, date that BillFloat should pay it, and Billfloat gives you a fee depending on how high the bill is. For example, a $60 Comcast bill has a $4.99 service fee, while a $225 All-State car loan bill has a $14.06 fee.
  3. Pay back Billfloat within 30 days.
  4. As a bonus, when you pay back BillFloat on time, your Bill Payment Power goes up and BillFloat can extend you more credit to pay bills (up to $1,000) and lower your fees.

In a nutshell, you pay a super-low fee to float your bill for awhile, get a 30 day extension, protect your credit, avoid service termination, and use a flexible, affordable alternative to mainstream bill-payment options that otherwise cost you money (expensive loans and bank fees) and stress (borrowing from family).

So what’s the catch?

It sounds like a savvy service that is ripe for recessionary times when cash is tight for struggling consumers. What makes it dangerous is that it’s so easy and affordable to do. It can initiate a nasty habit of relying on BillFloat to float your bills if you are prone to paying late or breaking the budget. Plus, the Bill Payment Power is a clever incentive to snag repeat customers by giving an incentive to keep using BillFloat to float bigger bills for higher fees.

“We will provide consumers relief from the $32 billion in overdraft protection, non-sufficient funds, and late fees that are paid by American families every year,” said BillFloat’s CEO to TechCrunch. As a last resort when you are strapped for cash and bills are piling, BillFloat is one of the better alternatives out there to keep up with payments. But only once in a blue moon. Remember that your best, fee-free bill payment option is to budget to make sure you never have to rely on any other bill-paying option other than yourself.



Bottomline: BillFloat is a start-up with a new, low-cost bill payment service that covers your bill and gives you a 30 day extension to pay back.

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163 Comments

  1. Bad experience with smart pay, I went to the metro store to purchase a phone, I had my money to do the purchase and the rep started to introduce me to Bluetooth and other stuff to go with the phone, I told her I had only money to purchase the phone then she said that I could get credit through smart pay.. She had me doing all my purchases on credit and she wanted me to max out the six hundred credit, I told her no I just wanted a few items with the phone. My purchases came up to about three hundred and change and I had to pay some money at the time of purchase I Had a balance of about two hundred and change and u have to give them automatic debit from your debit card. This started in sept 2013 I was suppose to pay it off in three months but since this was coming out automatically I forgot and the ninety days passed. This is now six months and they are still taking money i out my account. I called and ask them what was my balance they told me $67 left and I have two more payments of $51.17 I can either pay off $57 right away and close the account or make two more payments. They are rip off they know that if you bother with them in the first place you might not pay off in ninety days and this is how they capitalize on you. Don’t use them borrow from a relative crooks .

    Maureen at 9:25 pm on March 24, 2014
  2. I need help paying my cell phone Bill

    Katherine at 7:45 am on July 8, 2014
  3. Is Billfloat even still a thing anymore? Every time I try to access it’s website, I keep getting rerouted to something called smart pay.

    Jasmine Kelly at 8:40 am on July 18, 2014
  4. I was 3 days late on my 90 days same as cash cellphone purchase. I go to pay the balance and the balance was $60 on the 16th of july. On the 20th it is now $260. I have paid $750 for this phone and i am not happy. Very disappointed in billfloat and will make it known to everyone I xotme in contact with to let them know they are scammers.

    Thomas Lawrence at 7:44 pm on July 20, 2014
  5. I used to pay my phone bill through billfloat but i cant get back in now it was a while back how do i sign back in

    joanie Buller at 4:08 am on July 23, 2015
  6. Enola Guerrero

    Hi Joanie – Please contact Billfloat about this matter. Thank you!

    Enola Guerrero at 5:13 pm on July 23, 2015
  7. I would like to apply but cant pull up the website plz send link

    Cory Trice at 6:31 am on August 24, 2015
  8. Enola Guerrero

    Hi Cory – We can definitely assist you with registration. Please contact our support department here: https://www.creditkarma.com/about/contact

    Thanks!

    Enola Guerrero at 2:55 pm on August 24, 2015
  9. Hello my name is James toussaint I can’t pay my metro pcs phone this month can you please help me up my phone bill is due today is $55 my cell phone number is 9546672600

    James toussaint at 3:55 am on August 29, 2015
  10. Enola Guerrero

    Hi James,

    Please contact your carrier about your payments. Thank you.

    Enola Guerrero at 10:46 am on August 31, 2015
  11. Hi i cant pay my metro pcs bill how can u help

    Jachaun davis at 8:02 am on September 13, 2015
  12. Enola Guerrero

    Hi Jachuan – Please contact Metro PCS directly for this matter. Thanks!

    Enola Guerrero at 5:03 pm on September 15, 2015
  13. Hi.this is the first time I cant pay my phone bill on time. Is there anyway u can help me? I really need my phone on, i have a 3yr special needs son that I constantly need to be calling hos doctors and i haven’t the state involved. Please help me. Thanks

    Jeannette Medina at 5:57 am on December 7, 2015

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