Is a Checking Account Really Necessary These Days?

Let’s face it: checks are on their way out. So why should you keep paying bank fees to maintain a checking account?

If you’re like most Americans, having a checking account isn’t quite the necessity it used to be. Some of us are exceptions, of course, but think about it: how often do you write checks these days? Most of the time you just run a card through a machine when it comes time to pay for something, don’t you?

Just a little food for thought…

The way of the dodo

Ten years ago, checks were more or less necessary. If nothing else, you needed them to pay bills by mail, unless you wanted to go through the rigmarole of getting (and paying extra for) money orders down at the bank or the Quik-Stop.

Not anymore. Nowadays you can pay most of your bills by feeding bank account info into a few fields on a web page, and clicking a button to send an Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) straight to your creditor. It’s a rare bank that doesn’t offer electronic access to your account, and a rarer creditor that doesn’t accept EFTs.


All the big banks also allow something most call “Billpay.” It’s simple enough. If you want to send money to an individual or company that doesn’t take EFTs, you can just get the bank to cut them a check without ever picking up a pen.

All you have to do is enter some basic address information for the recipient, tell the bank how much you want to send, click that button–and the bank will print out a check and put it in the mail for you. No extra charge, usually.

Bye bye, checks!

The great thing about both EFTs and Billpay is that they don’t have to be linked to a checking account to work. They can pull money directly from your savings account if you want. So if your bank is one of those dinosaurs that still charges a monthly fee on your checking account…well, why are you wasting your money?

See, most banks don’t charge fees on savings accounts. And even if they do, well, there are plenty of fish in the ol’ financial sea. Either ask them to stop charging you for the privilege of profiting from your account, or take your business elsewhere.

You don’t need to waste your money on checking fees. You don’t have to ever buy new checks. You don’t even have to balance your checkbook anymore, either. Reasons enough to abandon your checking account?