How To Write A Check: A Step-by-step Guide

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check

These days, many of us send money electronically, we don't often go to the banking hall. In fact, electronic banking (online and app) has made banking easier for everyone across the globe. But this hasn't completely eradicated the use of check. Every now and then, we may write checks to make payment to a person (family, friends, clients) or business organization for goods sold or services rendered.

If you have never written a check or you haven't written in a long while, in this article, you will learn how to write a check. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to write a check to avoid dishonored check. Check is also called cheque. So when you see check, know that they are referring to check and vice-versa.

Generally, you can only write a check-up to the amount of money you have on your bank account balance. But with an overdraft, you can write a check for an amount beyond your current account balance.

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check
An unfilled check

When filling a check, you can complete the steps in any order of your choice as long as the finished product isn't missing any important detail.

ALSO READ: 7 Ways To Avoid Unnecessary Bank Charges

In this sample on how to write a check, we will move from the top to the bottom of check. Filling the check from the top to the bottom will help you avoid skipping any steps.

How To Write A Check

Below are the steps on how to write a check with example:

1. Fill in the date

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check

Write the current date on the line at the top right-hand corner. Although this isn't the same for all banks. This detail will tell the bank and the recipient the date the check was written. The date could be written completely with numbers and words or all numbers. For example, 6/10/2020 or June 10, 2020.

2. Write the name of the payee

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check

On the line that reads “pay to the order of,” you should write the name you’d like to pay. A payee is someone who will issue the check and receive the amount stated on it from the bank. The name could be an individual, a business (corporation), a club, a school, or any entity that owns a bank account to accept deposit. Example; Onyema Donald, Trending Accounting Media. If you don’t know the exact name of the payee, you can write the word “cash.” However, this is very risky because anyone can cash or deposit a check made out to “cash” since there is no specific name on the check.

3. Write the check amount in numeric form

There are two spots on the check that will ask you to state the amount you’re paying. First, write the numerical amount in the small box on the right of the line for the recipient’s name. For example, you may write $1000.50 if you wish to write a check for one thousand dollars and fifty cents. Ensure you write this clearly so that the bank can subtract the correct amount on the check from your account balance.

4. Write the check amount in words

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check

How do you write a check amount in words? You’ll need to write out the amount in words to match the figure amount you already wrote on the line below “pay to the order of.” Put the cent amount over 1000. For example, if you wrote $1000.50 in the box, you’ll write “one thousand and 50/1000.” Assuming the check is for $1000 or any other round number, you should still include 00/1000 for more clarity. You should verify the total payment when you write the amount in words.

5. Write a memo

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check

The memo section of the check is not compulsory (optional). However, it’s a good idea to fill it out because it can remind you of purpose you wrote the check. For example, If you’re writing the check to pay your car mechanic for your car repaired, you can write “car repaired.” Write your account number in the memo area if the check is for a certain bill.

6. Sign the check

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check

Sign your name or any other signature you used in opening the account on the line at the bottom right hand corner of your check. Your signature notifies the bank that you agree to pay the stated amount to the payee you noted.

Example: “/SIGNATURE/”

Completed Check

Below is an example of what a properly completed check should look like. Please Note, that this is not a real check.

How To Write A Check: Fill Out A Check
A completed check

General pointers

Here are some vital pointers on how to write a check. In addition to the six steps stated above, you’ll also want to consider these points carefully:
  1. Write as neatly as possible.
  2. If possible, Use printing instead of cursive. This is for clarity purposes – print is easier to read than script.
  3. Write “void” on the check if you make an error and start writing a new one.
  4. Ensure all spellings are correct.
  5. Ensure you double check that you have the right recipient and the right value amount before presenting the check in the bank.
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