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Should Banks Charge Fees For Check Writing?

Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 6:10 PM
From The Financial Brand
Consumers shopping for new checking accounts aren’t as interested in writing unlimited checks as they were only three years ago. It’s just not a selling point for financial marketers anymore… but it could be a source of revenue.

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If a bank charged for writing more than a certain number of checks per month, would that be a deal killer for you?
Ken TuminKen Tumin5,472 posts since
Nov 29, 2009
Rep Points: 125,708
1. Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 7:04 PM
With money market accounts the number of checks per month is already limited. I probably don't write one or two checks per month from my 'brick and mortar' local bank checking account. It would certainly depend on the number of checks allowed whether it would be a "deal breaker" or not.
ShorebreakShorebreak2,695 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 14,611
2. Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 9:30 PM
It would only be a deal breaker for me if they charged me at all for anything in my bank.  I like getting my checks free and no charges to any of my accounts.  I do write a lot of checks for certain reasons but if I had to pay for them I would use other ways instead of checks.
paoli2paoli21,406 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 6,150
3. Friday, March 8, 2013 - 7:40 AM
If a bank would eliminate the amount you must keep in the account in order to get free everything I would say yea go ahead and charge a fee per ck after say 5 or so. But, if you continue on the "minimum requirement" kick and your billpay is not free or your list of payees is in-adequate or their is a charge if your payee is not on the list or you take forever to ach the money to a payee (there's more but I'm catching my breath). Yea, deal killer if I were shopping for a new bank. (Rant & Rave "OFF"-- Calm now "On")
klinkklink101 posts since
Dec 8, 2012
Rep Points: 276
4. Friday, March 8, 2013 - 2:20 PM
When checking accounts are no interest, or reduced interest from that on a savings account, banks certainly should not charge a fee for writing checks -- or any other special fee on checking accounts. After all, the lack of interest is already a fee! To add yet another fee would be to double charge. 

All a check is is a withdrawal slip -- except when you use a check, you generally do not impose on a clerk at the teller window, so save the bank money accordingly. They should not be charging any fees for using a check that they do not charge for using a withdrawal slip. And they should not be charging for a withdrawal slip -- any expense of that is already calculated in the interest rate you get.

I suppose if they want to give you an interest rate higher than the savings rate in trade for limiting the number of checks you use each month, that might be something. But they already do that -- those are called money market checking accounts. But they certainly can't be giving you low or no interest AND charging fees.
me1004me1004373 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 2,600