Why in the hell do people write checks?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by iGary, Nov 7, 2006.

  1. iGary Guest

    iGary

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #1
    With checking MasterCard and VISA cards, why in the world would people still write checks? (I saw a lady at PetSmart writing a check tonight.)

    I don't think I have written a personal check in a year...

    Do you?
     
  2. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #2
    I don't get it either, they should be writing cheques.

    But seriously forks, I was amazed at the level of credit card use in Canada - people would buy one coffee with a credit card?!

    Nobody here writes cheques unless it's for something big or tradition demands it, we just use that old-fashioned stand-by: cash. Mainly because the banks and credit card companies can't give us the old kick in the bollocks when we use cash.
     
  3. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #3
    For me, to pay the rent. Le sigh. But that's pretty much the only check I write.
     
  4. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #4
    Pretty much the only people I see using checks in retail stores are old folks who likely aren't comfortable with those newfangled magnetic strip swipey credit card-like things.
     
  5. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #5
    I'm confused by personal checks. I rarely wrote them many moons ago when single, never wrote them since getting married, and find them to be archaic.
     
  6. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #6
    Depends, are the debit cards protected by court orders at the banks like your checks?
     
  7. SpookTheHamster macrumors 65816

    SpookTheHamster

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    Location:
    London
    #7
    I can understand them as a way to send money to people, but not in shops.

    I used to HATE it when people would pay by cheque when I was a cashier, it takes so fricken long and they always mess it up.
    ¨Do you print cheques?¨
    ¨Yes, we do¨
    ¨Good (proceeds to write on cheque anyway)¨ ARGH!

    I suppose old habits die hard.
     
  8. iGary thread starter Guest

    iGary

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #8
    Well most banks issue a VISA or MasterCard check card. You pay for something and it comes out of your account immiately - it's not like you're going into debt to buy a bag of groceries.

    Anyway, just find it weird that people still bother.
     
  9. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #9
    Our estate agents just give us a "Rent Card" that makes rent payable at any post office in Australia - I pay mine with my debit card.
     
  10. Lau Guest

    #10
    I'm trying to remember the last few I've written. I think I've written my mum one, paid a load of uni fees with them, and perhaps used one or two for eBay. Apart from that, no. People who use them in shops get right on my tits.

    Although, I do remember the pub next to the cinema we worked at would take cheques from us horrible lot towards the end of the week before we got paid. Bless 'em. :D
     
  11. Allotriophagy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2006
    #11
    A cheque takes several days to clear and no immediate check is made to see if you have sufficient funds when the cheque is written.

    This makes them very handy for making purchases the day before pay day, when your account is running on fumes and you HAVE to buy pet food or your dog will DIE, even though you too are starving but you'll be able to survive just a bit longer.

    Cheque stubs are a good way to keep track of your outgoings, if you are the sort of person who sits down and tallies it all up. No need to keep receipts.

    Outside of retail, they are a convenient way of giving larger sums to people. Either as a gift or to pay things like rent.

    I sometimes send a cheque in advance to my landlord, but usually do a BACS transfer online. Sometimes it is just nice to write a little letter, fill out the cheque and go for a walk to the Post Office to buy a stamp and a fruity drink.

    Any more things that other people do that you just don't understand for some reason which I might be able to shed some light on?
     
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #12
    I wish I had that! Or better yet automatic debit! :) It's not like I'm not planning on paying my rent. :rolleyes:
     
  13. AvSRoCkCO1067 macrumors 65816

    AvSRoCkCO1067

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2005
    Location:
    CO
    #13
    It is required for some things - say, tuition for college. Other than those things, though, I don't use checks much...
     
  14. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #14
    Floating is becoming harder to do with the new electronic conversion for many checks. In some cases they do it right at the store and zap it out of your account immediately.
     
  15. rdowns Suspended

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #15
    I write maybe 10 checks a year. I pay bills electronically or by credit card. I use my debit card for most anything I can. I use my credit card for any decent size purchase to gain points. I pay off my credit card each month.
     
  16. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #16
    Don't forget your big creditors are allowed to also do the electronic conversion and take it out of the account immediately.

    They also get to destroy the check, instead of giving it back to you.

    So you will get fewer real checks returned and more copies back even if you have checked the return checks option at the bank.
     
  17. iGary thread starter Guest

    iGary

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    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #17
    I'm mainly talking about grocery stores, department stores, Best Buy...
     
  18. iSaint macrumors 603

    iSaint

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    South Mississippi y'all, near the water!
    #18
    Gary's back... :D











    We write checks for our children's expenses/fund-raisers at school. His karate lessons, her soccer registration, etc. There's still some need out there.


    I agree there...I don't write checks when shopping, eating out, etc.
     
  19. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #19
    ...to annoy you Gary.

    i've never used a check in a store. honestly. cash or credit. (debit being cash as its instantly withdrawn).


    Chundles, i pay for my coffee with my debit card, why? because it means i have less to carry around with me. less to keep track of. and i also end up keeping track of all my purchases through my statements this way. even the little ones. its convenience and it doesn't cost anything extra, so why not?
     
  20. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #20
    Frack the checks...why would anyone go to Best Buy? :eek: :D
     
  21. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #21
    We get charged for every transaction not made through the bank's own EFTPOS machines. So, unless the restaurant has an EFTPOS machine from the National Australia Bank I get charged an extra $1.50 for the transaction.

    This is why we Aussies carry cash - the banks here are notorious for their fees and charges, same with the credit cards - they charge a certain amount if the charged amount is low.

    Most places have a $10 minimum on all card transactions because even they get charged by the banks for using the machines. It's a horrible system and the banks should be ashamed.
     
  22. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #22
    In the US, part of the agreement for both VISA and MasterCard is that merchants are not allowed to have a minimum amount for credit purchases. If they accept credit cards, they must accept them for ALL purchases. Yes, the businesses get hosed for small purchases that way, but that's part of the deal and they need to price their things accordingly.

    Many businesses still post signs saying "$10 minimum for credit card purchases," which cuts down on the small purchases I'm sure, but you could force the issue if you wanted to and then report them to VISA/MasterCard if they deny your right to use your card.
     
  23. calyxman macrumors 6502a

    calyxman

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2005
    #23
    On rare occasions do I actually write out a check (for instance, I recently had to write a check to renew my vehicle license plate).

    Otherwise, I'm a heavy convenience user of my credit card: after all, I'm racking up bonus points which I can use to purchase gas cards.
     
  24. MattG macrumors 68040

    MattG

    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    Fletcher, NC
    #24
    I often wonder the same thing myself...what's the point when you have a check card??

    The only thing I still write checks for is my home equity loan, only because I can't pay it online.
     
  25. iMeowbot macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    #25
    People have long memories. For the longest time those cards were a pain to use, with each store accepting only certain networks and the tendency of transactions not to go through for no apparent reason. A debit card too often made somebody the jerk who was holding up the line. It seems to be the opposite now, but it can take some doing to convince those people that it really works now.
     

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