Millennial Moment: Step-By-Step Guide on How to Write a Check

When was the last time you saw someone using a check? With the recent technology advancements, it’s rare that you see someone pull out a pen to process a check. However, before you disregard this traditional way of payment, there are a few things you should consider. Checks may have more benefits than you may have been aware of. But before we dive into the many benefits and ways you should use your personalized Carousel Checks, You first need to learn how to actually write one.

check

How to write a check

Write the date

In the top right corner, you will find a space market “Date”. Record the date you are writing the check. Remember this is a legal document so you need to make sure you record the date to which you are signing the check.

Write the name of the recipient

You will record the name or organization you are writing the check out to on the “Pay to” line. Make sure you know the correct name of the organization or person you are writing the check to. Don’t use acronyms or abbreviations unless you have been directed to do so. Keep in mind that if you make the check out to “cash”, anyone could cash the check.

Write the amount of the check

Record the exact amount of the check using dollars and cents.

Write the monetary amount in word form below recipient name

Under the “Pay to” line record the amount again in word form. If the check was for $20.00, write twenty dollars.

Sign the check

In the bottom right corn sign the check. Your check will not be valid unless you personally sign the check.

Complete the memo section

In the bottom left corner, you want to record what the check was for. If this was for your rent this month you may write “rent for apartment #XYZ”.

personal check book

Benefits to writing checks

It may seem counterintuitive to use checks in this day in age, but they still have advantages over your credit or debit cards. Here are just a few advantages you need to keep in mind the next time you go to swipe your plastic.

Acceptance

Believe it or not, some small businesses, education institutions, and government agencies will not accept credit or debit cards. This is because companies like Visa and Mastercard® charge a fee every time businesses process a payment using a credit card. They can avoid this fee by requiring all consumers to pay with cash or check. Some businesses will make you pay extra to cover the fee. If you use a check, you don’t have to worry about the additional charge.

Checks are traceable

If you want to be able to trace your transactions but cannot use a debit or credit card, using a check can be a viable alternative. When you go to send your check you can select a mailing option with a tracking number. Once the check has been received and clears you to have the option to retrieve a copy of the canceled check. If for some reason there is a dispute, you can give the creditor a copy of your mailing receipt with the canceled check.

Minimum credit card balance

Some businesses require a minimum transaction for using credit. If you don’t meet the minimum you may be subject to an additional fee. They do this to cover the credit card merchant fee. This is a waste of your money. If you have check you can avoid paying the extra fee.

Pay during an electrical outage

Some businesses run strictly on electronic processors. If there happens to be an outage, you may be able to use cash or check to process the payment. Having check easily accessible may save you in a bind.

Gift Giving

If you want an alternative to giving gift cards, writing a check may be a great option. This way your recipient can choose how they want to spend their funds. With fun personalized checks from Checks Unlimited, they will always know who the generous gift was from. It is a great way to give them freedom for a purchase and still make it fun and personal.

balance check book

Additional considerations when writing checks

Even though checks have plenty of benefits, there are still some things you need to consider in order to keep your money safe.

Keep your checks in a safe place

You don’t want your checks to be easily accessible. Keep your checks in a locked drawer or a safe. It may be a good idea to write down the first and last number of your checkbook. This way if someone were to take your checkbook you could easily track the transactions.

Record every check you write

Make sure you record every check you write. Some checkbooks may come with a carbon copy of the previous check. This will help with your record keeping.

Securely mail checks

If you decided to pay bills with checks, send them securely. Whether it is with a persoanl or buisness check from 4Checks, You want to be able to track your checks if there is a discrepancy. You also don’t want to end up paying a late fee for something that was in the mail and should have been received on time. Make sure you always have stamps and correct postage when mailing your check so you can mitigate any issues that can come up.

Print only required information on a check

Only provide what is required on the check. Some merchants may request your driver's license number or additional information but don’t provide it if it wasn’t requested.

check book

Review check transactions daily

Checking your transactions daily is extremely important. Make sure every transaction is something that you have requested. If you find a discrepancy big or small, contact your bank right away.

The bottom line

Now that you understand how to write a check and the benefits they have, you may be able to use one when you’re in a bind. Before you take our your credit card, consider all payment options and make sure you make the best payment selection for your transaction.