Much ado has been made in recent years about being able to deposit checks to your bank accounts using your phone’s camera. It works well and is super convenient, so if your bank’s app offers this feature you may want to try it out.
One of the first things you need to find out is if your bank even offers an official app (they probably do), which might allow you to deposit checks from home. Word of warning: always use the official app and when you deposit checks, and make sure you don’t use it on an open Wi-Fi network.
Another thing you want to verify what kind of checks you can deposit. For example, you can probably deposit a variety of check types such as cashier’s, traveler’s, money orders, and more.
Also, make sure you know what your maximum daily amount is. If you have more to deposit than you’re allowed, you may have to actually go into your bank or space your deposits out over a few days.
Finally, make sure you know when your funds will be available. You and your bank should have some kind of depository agreement in place, and funds may not be immediately available. Remember, any deposit won’t be officially complete until your bank actually collects the money.
Using an App to Make Deposits
Using an app to make deposits from your home is one of those conveniences we should all take for granted. Most banks now have dedicated apps in the major app stores. Let’s briefly show you how you might deposit a checks using a typical banking app.
Basic Tips to Using Your Banking App’s Check Deposit
Assuming your bank lets you deposit checks from home, then you will likely only need to prepare your check by endorsing the back. You might have to write some other information such to what account the check is being deposited. Your bank will let you know what to write.
Locate the deposit option on your banking app.
You may also need to enter how much you’re depositing and, if you have more than one account, to which the funds are going.
Once you’ve squared all that away, you will capture the front of the check, and then the back.
It is best to use a dark-colored background and hold the phone as still as possible so you get it right the first time.
Send both sides on their way to your bank and make sure you get confirmation that the check has been successfully received. If you get a confirmation number, it’s best to write that down in case something goes awry.
What to Do Once the Check is Deposited
It’s a good idea to wait until you get verification from your bank that the check has been successfully deposited. As we mentioned earlier, the funds may not be immediately available and again, the transaction isn’t entirely complete until your bank receives the money from the check issuer.
That said, once the funds have been deposited and are available you should scrawl “VOID” across the face of the check or even better, shred it.
You bank should be able to explain the technical aspects of their deposit app. You should expect that the images you capture will not be stored, and that they will be encrypted before sending.
Overall, depositing checks by smartphone should be easy, safe, and secure. We’ve never experienced a problem, and can’t remember any reported case where someone has hacked the process. Of course, that doesn’t mean it won’t happen, but that also doesn’t mean someone won’t run up to you and rob you at gunpoint either.
When depositing checks at home, just remember to use you bank’s own app, don’t forget to endorse the back of your check, use a dark-colored background when capturing the check, and make sure the funds are available before voiding or shredding it.
We hope then that if you’ve never considered depositing checks using your bank’s phone app, that this article has sparked your curiosity, If you would like to ask a question or contribute a comment, please leave your feedback in our discussion forum.