Life | Money

How to Write a Check

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Do people still write checks? The answer is an absolute yes! Although it is easy to say that people don’t nearly write as many checks as they used to, due to the advancement in technology that has introduced the “card swipe,” system of payment, checks are still very relevant in today’s world of business. The culture of writing checks is still hanging around a bit longer.

With that being the case, if you were to ask a lot of younger individuals, you might be surprised to know that they don’t know how to write a check anymore.  Some will even tell you that they don’t know what a check looks like. That’s not good because it is still widely accepted in financial institutions. Ignorance of such a vital means of exchange does not seem like bliss. That said, what was once common for everyone now has people struggling. 

Thankfully, my mother taught me years ago how to write a check. If you don’t know how to write one, you’re in luck. Today’s post will show you how to write a check.



Write Out The Date Clearly

There is a line at the top of each check. The date goes in that section. You must include the month, day, and the year. An example of how the date would look is 8/26/20.

If you would like your check to have a more personalized feel, you are equally permitted to write in a Month, Day, and Year format. What this means is that unlike the former, you’ll have an opportunity to inscribe the alphabet of the month. An example of this would be “August 26, 2020.” 

Writing a date on your check, in any of these formats is so important because, without it, it will not be valid. So, the next time you have to fill a check, don’t be in so much of a hurry that you neglect this essential step.


Inscribe The Name Of The Recipient

You will see an area that says pay to the order of. In this section, you will be required to write out who the check is for. Make sure you use the person’s official name, as Nicknames should not be written on a check at all, because the bank teller will not cash it. 

If you have to write a check for a business, contact the business to see who you need to make your check out to. With some companies, you can write the owner’s name on the check. While for others, you will have to write it out to the company. 

Always ensure that you address the name of the recipient properly and let your writing be legible.


Write The Amount In Numbers

This box is used to write the dollar amount of the check-in numbers. If you are observant enough, you’ll already see that the bank has helped you to indicate the dollar currency sign. 

What is left will be for you to write out the numerical value. That is to say, if you had an outstanding bill of $500 to pay your trainer, you only need to indicate “500.00” in the check.

Also, make sure you use a decimal place to separate dollars and cents. For example, if you are writing a check for $15.95, it would need to look like “15.95.” In this case, 95 is the cent amount.


Write Out The Amount in Words

In this case, you are expected to write the amount of the check, in words. If you have some cents in your amount, you will put the cents over 100. 

Writing the amount this way is like a 2-step verification, and it is required because our writings are all so different. What the cashier might not clearly see if you wrote the amount in numbers, they have a better chance of doing a double check by reading the amount in words. 

This section is located below the recipient line, making it very easy to find and fill. A practical example of that is if you are writing a check for $10.20, it will look like this: Ten and 20/100 dollars. If there aren’t any cents, you will write 00/100.


Optional Memo

This area is for the memo. If you are not sure of what to write here, the good news is, it is optional. You don’t have to add a memo to the check. 

If you do, then it is just a note or description of what the check is for. For example, if you are paying a parking ticket, you would put that information in the memo section. It doesn’t need to be a paragraph; it just needs to be a short sentence or a few words.


Append Your Signature

That is the final area of your check. Imagine that you got a birthday gift of your favorite sports car, and when the excitement had subsided, they told you that the keys would be available until your next birthday. 

Obviously, that has to be a year away, how would that make you feel? We know your answer might be a look of disappointment. Well, that is almost the same effect when you carefully write out all the details needed on the check and forget to append your signature.

You should sign your name right away because every check needs to be signed. Sometimes people may forget to do it. Without your signature, the check is no good. It can’t be cashed or deposited. You will need to get that check signed by the person who issued it, and if you are the one issuing it, then sign it.

There you have it. You now know how to write a check. It wasn’t hard at all, was it? Even though people don’t write checks as often anymore, it is something you should still know how to do. It’s good to know because you may get that one person who still accepts payments via check.

Do you know how to write a check? Do you still write checks?



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  1. I actually had a conversation with a lady at the Dollar Tree about this. She was saying her adult son called her because he didn’t know how to write a check. I don’t necessarily think that it is a bad thing that people do not know how to write them it is the time we live in. Checks are still accepted but debit cards are more convenient. I think at some point checks will not even be offered with your accunt.

  2. This is a needed and practical set of guidelines. It reminds me of the time I had my freshmen high school students write letters to themselves at the start of the school year. To make it official, I gave them envelopes to fill out and seal. About two thirds of them had no idea how to fill out the mailing and return address…

  3. I didn’t know how to write a check (prior to readingt this), I have never handled a check either, which is odd, but a sign of the times we are living in. Credit cards, debit cards, virtual payments etc. Checks never seem to feature anywhere.
    Next time I need to write a check though, I will have somewhat of an idea 🙂

  4. Some people may think a post like this is silly, but with the rise of credit cards and check cards there are probably a whole lot of people who have never written a check. Good tips!

  5. I never thought about this before but you are right, there would be many young people out there who wouldn’t know how to write a check. Another group are seniors. After my dad passed away, mom had to learn how to write checks because she had never done it before. Good information.

  6. I still go with check all the time, I do not relay much on ATM cards just have 1 and it has a small limit so I have to use check most of the time.
    But I have seen many who do not know how to write a check , this information will help many.
    Thank you.

  7. I wonder if checks will end up going away? I could also see banks charging people for writing a check in the same way they charge people to take their own money out from a machine. It’s all kind of frustrating when you think of it. They get you to use a machine to do your banking, which allows them to same money on hiring tellers, and then they charge you to use the machine.

  8. I was a little surprised to see this post but after reading some of the comments I see it is a great idea. Being old school, checks to me are still second nature.

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