Knowing how to read and write a check are the basics of managing a checking account. So if reading checks and writing checks is new to you, here are some basics that will help you.
When reading or writing a check the most important part is to familiarize yourself with the contents.
- Name, address, etc. The upper left-hand corner of your check is where you find the check owner’s name and address (phone number, and/or license number are also often included). Businesses will not accept a check if this information is not printed on it.
- Check number. In the upper right-hand corner you will find a check number, which falls in line chronologically with other checks in your book. The check number helps to identify each check after it has been paid to a person or business.
- Date. Below the check number is a space to print the date the check was written.
- “Pay to the order of”. The space after this phrase, represents who the receiver of the check is.
- Dollar sign. The “$” represents the dollar value of the transaction you wish to pay out of your checking account. (ex. $62.00)
- “…dollars.” On the following line is a space to write out the dollar amount in words to double check that the transaction amount is correct. (ex. Sixty-two dollars 00/100)
- Bank’s address. The address of the banking institution that issued the checks.
- “for.” This line allows you to note what the check is being written for.
- Signature. Directly across from the “for” line is a space to sign your name to confirm the check.
- Bank routing number and account info. At the bottom of the check are various numbers. The 9-digit number on the left side is your bank’s routing (identifier) number. The 10-digit series in the middle is your personal account number. And the last four numbers represents your check number.
In check writing, the check writer never has to deal with the backside of the check. However, if you’re the reciever of the check and you are cashing in – you will need to sign your name located in the “endorse here” section in the back of the check before the bank can give you the money.