How Long Does It Take for a Bill Payment To Go Through Online?

Young woman making online payment while sitting in the living room on sofa.
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Paying the bills requires good timing for deposits to come in — and payments to go out. The amount of time for a payment to post to your account varies by the financial institution. How long does it take for a bill payment to go through online? Although most banks follow a generalized time frame, there are several factors to consider. Here are just a few things to think about as you move forward with bill paying, making deposits and managing your online account.

How Long Does It Take for a Check to Deposit?

If you make an in-person check deposit into your bank account, you should have immediate proof that funds were posted with your paper deposit slip. The same goes for making a payment toward your mortgage, car payment or other types of revolving account. Deposits of $200 or less may be available the next business day, with the remainder of the funds clearing on the second business day.

Checking online to view a deposit post and other transactions is a quick way to manage what is being paid and when. If your recent deposit doesn’t appear right away online, consider the following:

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If Your Deposit Isn’t Showing:

  • The current balance versus the available balance is calculated differently.
  • Deposits or payments might not appear online until the end of the business day or after midnight of the current business day.
  • A payment might not appear on your recent transaction list, but your balance shows the amount has been deducted from your available balance.
  • If the payment was made from an ATM, funds might not be available immediately.
  • There were insufficient funds to cover the payment and additional fees have since accrued.

If you’re wondering “How long does it take for a check to clear?” it will depend on your bank and how they process the payment. Using online bill pay services to view your transactions is an easy way to track and stay on top of your payments and finances.

How Long Does It Take For a Bill Payment to Go Through Online?

Checking the different processing times before you contact customer service is recommended before pursuing a non-reported or non-posted payment. Here are several points to consider:

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Retailers and Institutions

If you’re making a payment to a credit card company from your bank’s checking account, it can take up to five days for the funds to be withdrawn. In some cases, there might be a hold on the full amount by displaying a smaller amount in its place. This is used to secure and validate the account before the total amount is withdrawn. If you see a smaller online payment being made initially, check back after three business days to see if the full payment amount has been deducted.

Money Transfers

If you’re making a payment on a bill and are transferring money from another account to do it, expect a short delay. If the account is with the same banking institution, the payment can appear within minutes online. If you’re using a separate bank or account, it could take up to three to five business days.

Deposit Types

If you need to make your mortgage payment quickly, the fastest processing time would be a cash deposit from your account balance or an automatic withdrawal from the bank where your mortgage is held.

It can take over 24 hours for your bank to process the transactions and for the deposit process to be completed. Banks often refer to instant deposits as memo posts or pending transactions. This information is recorded in your account as a deposit or payment and is pending until funds are secured. Once available, they are considered a hard post and are permanently recorded in your account, appearing online as a complete transaction.

Credit Card Company Policies

If you’re making a credit card payment from your checking account, it might take up to 48 hours for funds to withdraw from your current balance. Each credit card company has different policies regarding when and how an online payment is processed. If your credit card also acts as a debit card, the payment might show the current balance change almost as soon as the payment is made.

How Long Does Bill Pay Take to Process?

Most banks advise customers to allow some extra time when setting up bill payments. It takes up to five business days for a scheduled bill payment to reach the payee. Keep in mind that adding a couple of extra days of padding would be a good idea for recurring payments, in case your scheduled date falls on a weekend. Banks don’t process bill payments on weekends and will wait until the next business day, even if they were scheduled in advance.

Advice

There is no cut-and-dry time frame for how long does it take for a bill payment to go through online or in-person. To avoid overdraft fees or issues with companies and people you need to pay, schedule your bill payments a few days before they’re due.

Cynthia Bowman contributed to the reporting for this article.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.

About the Author

Julie Boehlke specializes in generating industry-specific web marketing content for leading brands. With over 15 years of copywriting experience, she shares her expertise with financial news, personal finance and business topics in informative articles and blog posts. Julie’s work has been published on numerous platforms and featured with numerous companies including, Angie’s List, Walgreens, Yahoo! News, LIVESTRONG, United Way and others.

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