Electronic Check Cashing - We are living in the future!
So I believe I’ve mentioned the ATI HD5770 I picked up a while back… well it came with a mail in rebate from the manufacturer, which finally came yesterday in the form of a check. Suddenly, a thought crossed my mind: how the heck am I gonna cash this thing?
We don’t actually have a local bank anymore - I’ve looked into our local credit unions, but haven’t found one I particularly like (most want us to carry a balance, something we’re not particularly good at lately) and since we might be heading out to Australia soon it would be of absolutely no benefit to us.
I looked into places to cash ‘em, Walmart wants $3 apparently - for a $25 check, that just seemed a bit steep. The local check cashing place in the next town over, complete with guy behind inch-thick lexan smoking a cigar, was even more obscene in pricing.
I remembered something about my mother in law’s Chase account allowing you to cash checks with a smart phone, so I went looking at Ally’s website to see if they did it too. Turns out the answer is “kinda”.
They don’t allow you to do it with a smartphone, or a camera at all really - it must be a scanner and they’re very picky about the format it’s in. Apparently it’s a limited trial, and we’re among the lucky users allowed to do it - but when I visit their site not logged in, that feeling of elitism quickly washed away.
So anyway, we endorsed the check as instructed, drew little dots on each corner as a “cropping hint” according to the instructions, scanned the images at the recommended settings and began the wizard. All told, it was about 20 minutes’ work - I couldn’t drive to a bank in that amount of time, even if we had one locally still.
The check hasn’t cleared yet, and I’m a little concerned because it’s a
rebate check (with nothing but our address on the back of it - no
security features or endorsement lines or anything) - but hopefully it
goes through without issue.
At least if you have to deal with something as archaic as checks, the electronic stuff makes it easier, right?