By: Revanche

Check Number 846

February 17, 2009

Between online billpay, Yodlee, and automatic credit card billing, I rarely write checks anymore. At most, I write two checks a month, so I’m pretty laissez faire when it comes to balancing my checkbook. Lately, all I do to balance it is highlight uncashed checks and cross out cashed checks. Plain and simple. 1) Make sure the money’s transferred in to cover the check, 2) put a line through it.

If this seems a little flippant for a normally neurotic financier, there’s a very good reason for it. I’m breaking myself of the habit of tracking each single penny in my checking accounts because I’m normally tempted to mess with the cushion in there. It kills me to see any balance that’s not earning its keep. Never mind that it IS earning its keep by serving as insurance against those times I have a boneheaded moment and pay bills in my sleep out of the wrong checking account, the risk of assuming that I won’t screw it up this time is too great.

Clearly that upsets the delicate balance of my banking system, so I intentionally close my eyes to the checking account. Mostly.

I’m on check number 863 now, so I keep checking back on that single uncashed check from seven months ago. I had a sneaking suspicion that if I looked away, it’d jump up and go commit dastardly deeds. And so, it’s with great relief I raise my arms in triumph and announce, the man has finally cashed his check!!

I can now go about my business. Halleluhjah!

7 Responses to “Check Number 846”

  1. frugalCPA says:

    You know how checks from most businesses give an expiration date? Yeah, we should do that too. After 90 days, that check is void, Mister Waitedtoolong.

  2. I never balance my checkbook either. It is completely unnecessary and a waste of time. 🙂 I typically just write the rent check, and even that is in a segregated account.

    I have held onto checks from my grandparents for months. they must have hated it.

    This past year, I got cash!

  3. I only ever write checks when I’m transferring money to our joint account. Any other time I use BillPay, so the bank tells me the money isn’t there, even if the person doesn’t cash it right away!

  4. Karen says:

    I don’t balance my checkbook because I am constantly looking at my account online. Sometimes I wish I did because occassionaly there will be a random check that I write that I will forget about (but not to where I would bounce. Just that I see I wrote a check and can’t remember for what!)

  5. Miss M says:

    I can’t say I’ve ever balanced my check book in my life. Maybe I have and it’s been so long I’ve forgotten. I hate people who wait forever to cash a check, totally screws me up. I’m glad Mr 846 finally got his act together and that you remembered after all this time.

  6. Revanche says:

    frugalCPA: Hah! I’m going to have to add that in fine print. Mr. WaitedTooLong 🙂

    SP: They probably did. I got an irate phone call from someone I pet sat for telling me to cash my check, years ago. 🙂 Cash is great, I just can’t track it.

    PA: I much prefer to be told the money’s not there. Lazy? Oh yes.

    Karen: Doesn’t your bank allow you to see copies of the check? That’s the saving grace of not looking at the checkbook.

    Miss M: Ever?? Really? Ok, I was a neurotic 18 year old and just liked keeping my register. Well, that and I paid for so many household things it was good to track it somehow, before I discovered Excel.

  7. Karen says:

    Revanche: It does show me an image. I just usually stare at the withdrawal for a bit trying to recall it and then click the link. I also use duplicates.

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