Author Topic: Cheques / Checks!  (Read 6751 times)

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Ceallach

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #60 on: December 11, 2011, 06:20:12 PM »
And a question from the US side of things--a PP mentioned having an account at the Post Office, and I've read English novels where characters refer to getting their money from the Post Office. Does the Post Office in other countries also run a bank? There's nothing like that here in the US.

In New Zealand a national bank (Kiwibank) was opened a few years ago which operates from post office outlets.  So yep, you can go do your banking in the post office.  I never have personally as I'm with a different bank, but I think it's a good thing because it kept more outlets open so on the rare occasion I need to go to a post office there was one nearby.
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katycoo

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #61 on: December 11, 2011, 07:49:48 PM »
For people who do not have a home computer, or have one to email but are not generally tech savvy (think elderly people, or lower income people), paying bills online would be hard to impossible.

Australia again: 

We have BPay available here which is telephone banking.  It was very popular before netbanking became the norm.  I've no idea if its still used but I believe so.

I netbank everything where possible.  My bank charges me a flat monthly rate, and I have a certain number of non-my bank atm transactions for free, cheques and other things, before I incur a charge.  I have unlimited eftpos use and atm withdrawals with my own or partner banks.

I can withdraw cash at pretty much any supermarket via eftpos.  Some atms accept deposits (incl cheques) but I'm seeing these less nowadays.  The atm gave your an envelope and a receipt to put in with your payment and it fed back into the machine.  The atm gave your account a 'pending credit' until the payment was confirmed by an employee.

People here are very lax about sharing bank info.  If I owe someone money I'll just transfer it to their account.  Same with fees for dance classes etc - I just send it to the company account with a descriptor tag so they can allocate the payment to my ledger.

Because I use cheques so little, and its attached to my debit account, its too hard to balance and the last cheque I used (for uni fees) they took 2 months to cash it and it really stuffed me around.

kkl123

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #62 on: December 12, 2011, 12:25:58 AM »
Credit union customer here.  I pay virtually everything by online bill pay if I don't pay cash; this is a free service for us because the paycheck is directly deposited.  Usually the only checks (technically a share draft, but it looks like a check and acts like a check) I write each year is to the state and federal income tax, and that's because there's those dratted forms that have to be signed and sent, too. <g>  If the paycheck wasn't direct deposit, we'd have to keep a minimum balance or pay $1/month for online bill pay -- still much less than postage stamps to send checks myself.

We don't allow direct debit from our account; that was a personal decision.  This way I'm forced to look over the bills and set up the payments.  We do have some bills that are the same each month, and I can set up automatic payments to those.

I prefer to pay cash at local small businesses whenever possible -- there's a charge to the business for accepting anything else, including checks and debit cards.  I figure an extra couple of percent in the veterinarian's coffers will be well used somehow. 

I prefer to have the online bill payment system for big companies, particularly big companies that you don't quite trust.  If they try to double bill me, I just fire up the computer, log into the account, and bring up that payment, and ask the bill payer to send them a copy of the transmittal number.  I don't have to yell at anyone, get upset or do anything except check a little box and write a short message to the bill pay company.  Get an email back about a week later that all is resolved.  The once this didn't work (company had accepted payment, applied it to another account, then couldn't figure out whose account was credited, I got hold of the bill payer folks the second time -- I was told that if the company that screwed up couldn't manage to get it right, There Would Be A Conference Call, and if it was still mishandled, Bill Payer would blacklist the company.  Didn't get that far, though so I don't know if it was a "wait till your father gets home, young sir!" or a threat with real teeth.

Most of the bill payments are accepted electronically; paper checks are sent by the bill pay company to anyone without electronic funds acceptance.

The CU is currently experimenting with scanning checks at home rather than requiring you to go to an ATM or branch.  Many of the CU members are tech workers, and many of them work at home, far from ATMs.   I think that will be rolled out further soon.

We can move funds from any account we currently own to any other account we currently own electronically.  Again, the CU is thinking about allowing funds to be transferred into any other account at the CU, regardless of whether you own it or not.  That will probably require "pseudo-accounts", where if you were going to transfer funds directly to my account, I'd give you an "account number" that actually wasn't my account, but one created by the bank for this purpose specifically -- rather like the pseudo-credit card numbers some credit cards will give you for online use.

We also have some automatic account messaging options; I can have email or text messages sent automatically if an account is low in funds, or a large expenditure goes out, or any of a number of conditions that I set up.   

So the long and the short of it is that I rarely write checks.  Rarely get any, either.

Information_queen

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #63 on: January 04, 2012, 01:25:44 AM »
US here

I write two checks a month - rent and my medical bill. Our old apartment had an online option; I wish this one did.

I did have to write a check to my mechanic a few months ago. If you use their payment plan option, you write them 4 checks that day, for 1/4 of the amount each, dated for that day and the next three months after that.

The only other checks I have to deal with are gifts from family ;D.

Thipu1

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #64 on: January 04, 2012, 04:04:49 PM »
I suppose we're quite old-fashioned but we still write about a half dozen checks a month.

We pay our monthly maintenance, telephone, gas and electric bills by check.  Mr. Thipu and I also pay any credit card charges by check.  We use checks for magazine subscriptions and the like because we like the paper trail.

In the past we have had problems with direct deposit. That also makes us a bit leery of paperless currency transfers. 


camlan

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #65 on: January 04, 2012, 04:13:58 PM »
One more place that will only take cash or a check--the Town Hall in my city, where you have to register your car, will take cash or checks only. And since they can't tell you ahead of time how much it will cost, either you bring a lot of cash or you pay by check. If you are renewing a registration, you can do that on-line and use a credit card.

To get a driver's license, you can use a credit card, but not a debit card. Or, of course, pay by cash or check or money order. But there, at least, you can find out the fees ahead of time.
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Sharnita

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #66 on: January 06, 2012, 08:28:18 PM »
I write a check for rent, for my student loans, for electric, etc.  I write probably 6 a month as well.

DistantStar

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #67 on: January 13, 2012, 09:48:54 PM »
US here, and I just found that I don't have to write any regular checks anymore; even my rent I can pay online.  This is fine as I am out of the silly things anyway.  Should something come up where I need to pay something in a similar form I'll get a money order, which is pretty cheap and easy.

Margo

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #68 on: January 26, 2012, 11:46:22 AM »
UK here. I have a chequebook, but I don't use a lot of cheques.

The last few I've used:
- to pay the milkman (I could pay online, but only by signing up wholseale to their online system, which would mean I could only change my order online, and with 24 hours notice. Now, I can just leave a note for the milkman if I want extra, or fewer pints on a given day)

- to pay my paper bill. I could pay by card by going in to the newsagents, but as I've been busy and ot around much when they are open, recently, I posted a cheque to them instead.

- to send some money to a friend of mine to pay for some theatre tickets she has booked for us.

I probably write between 4 - 6 cheques per month.  The only cheques I normally receive are ocassionally if I have paid for something (such as booking tickets) and a friend is paying me back - I'd be happy to do this with a online transfer but not all my friends are comfortable with providing their bank details, or for one savings account I have if I want to withdraw money I can't simply transfer it to a different account so will withdraw a cheque and pay it straight into my other account.

I pay most of my regualar bills by Standing Order, a few by Direct Debit, and make most one-off payments and purchases using my credit card.

I carry a bit of cash - although pretty much all shops etc. accept card payments some smaller ones will make a charge for, or will not accept, card payments for very small sums (usually under £5, sometimes under £10)

I mostly use cash for things such as vending machines, car parking and small purchases at smaller shops. It would be unusual for me to spend more than  £10 - £15 cash a week and can be a lot less.

I don;tthink I've ever had a job where I was paid other than by direct bank payment.

Sapphire

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Re: Cheques / Checks!
« Reply #69 on: February 04, 2012, 08:04:31 PM »
UK here too.

I very rarely write cheques these days - probably 1 or 2 a year - in fact I will need to write one soon for my window cleaner as I was out when he came.

Here we have a couple of methods for automatically paying vendors. Direct debit here appears to be very different to the US. Paying by Direct Debit means the vendor pulls the money from my account - in order to be able to use Direct Debit, the vendor needs to be able to prove that they are of a suitable calibre; they must also give you notice of how much they are to take so that you have time to query it. All Direct Debits are covered by the Direct Debit Guarantee which basically means that if an amount is taken from your account without your permission, the bank will refund you and then they will follow up with the vendor. I can also cancel a Direct Debit at any time. I use Direct Debit for things like gas, electricity, mobile phone.

The other method is a Standing Order, whereby I set up a regular payment with the bank for payments where it is the same every month such as rent or insurance. This can be to individuals or companies.

Otherwise, I just use my debit card or cash for payments in shops.

In addition, I can make payments by computer or phone banking to any person or company as long as I have their bank details. My parents are not very computer literate, so they just use phone banking.

I have never known a company I have worked for to pay salary by anything other than direct deposit, or, years ago, cash.