Utility Auto Debit Program
The Auto Debit Program for utility billing gives you another way to pay your City of Nanaimo user rate bills. It can be used for:
- Automatic payment of your charges
- City water, sewer and garbage services
The application form must be completed, signed and accompanied by a blank cheque marked VOID or a Direct Deposit form provided by your banking institution to start the program.
- You will always receive your discount
- No administrative charges
- No more mailing cheques or waiting in line
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the User Rates Auto Debit Program?
This voluntary program authorizes the City of Nanaimo to automatically withdraw your User Rates account balance from your bank account on each billing discount date (approximately every four months). Simply provide us with your:
- bank account information and a void cheque (for chequing accounts)
- bank, transit and account numbers (for savings accounts) or
- a Direct Deposit form provided by your banking institution.
What is a Discount Date?
The discount date is the day up to which a discount of 5% will be given on the current User Rates Bill if full payment of the balance of the account is received. The discount date is typically three weeks after each billing date.
Do I get the discount if I am on this Program?
Yes. As long as you are on the Auto Debit Program, your automatic payment will be the balance on the User Rates account, less all discounts applicable to the current billing.
Will I still receive bills? How will I know that my bill amount will be withdrawn automatically after I sign up?
You will receive your User Rates bills as usual. However, the comments section of the bill (in the bottom right hand corner) will indicate "$XX.XX will be automatically withdrawn from your bank account." The payment will automatically come out of your account on (or after) the discount date as indicated on the bill.
What if I don’t have enough money in my bank account on the withdrawal date?
The City currently charges a fee of $19 for each NSF payment for User Rates. The Auto Debit Program applies the same penalty. If an account has more than two NSF charges in a year, the account may be removed from the Auto Debit Program.
Can I pay a set amount each month?
The City also has an ‘Equal Payment Instalment Plan’ to withdraw approximately 1/12 of your annual User Rate charges from your bank account on a specific day each month. This concept is similar to the BC Hydro equal payment plan program.
How do I cancel or make changes to my account? Under what circumstances do I need to contact City Hall?
You must submit written notification to the City Collections Department at least 10 working days prior to your next billing discount date in any of these circumstances:
- You are selling your property
- Stopping payment
- To cancel your enrollment in the Program
- Changing bank, branch, or account