So I mentioned in my intro that banks don’t expect black people to do anything except cash a check. I mean lets keep it real. Actually lets keep it all the way funky; soon as you present that check and say,
“I want to cash this, but I don’t have an account here,” the teller’s eyes light up for check fraud.
Its okay to laugh. We’ve got a bad rep. But you’re a legit guy. So after they verify everything on the check, gather your info, and even a thumbprint, they hit you with,
“And we do charge a fee to cash checks if you don’t have an account here, it’s $7.”
Now, why ya’ll are not immediately appalled by this I’ll never understand. 9/10 of ya’ll just say okay and don’t even do the math in your head.
Let’s say you get paid every two weeks. So you’re paying $14 a month to cash your checks. That’s $168 a year you are putting into a bank that you don’t even have an account with. You could use the $168 more than they can can’t you? And this is just the lowest fee I’ve seen. Some banks charge $9, others $10. I’ve even seen up to $12.
And think before you say $168 “isn’t that much.” For some of us that’s a car note, an electric bill, new clothes for the kids. A one way ticket somewhere. An opening deposit for a savings account. Hell, if you want to go street, that’s a zip with the right plug. I’m not here to judge, just here to relay a message about where this “little bit” of money can go.
If it’s $25 to open an account (about the amount of cashing 3 checks) and you don’t have a bank account period, why not open one with the bank your checks are drawn off of? Not only will the funds be available in the account right away, you save that $168 and establish a relationship that will benefit you in the future when you want to lets say buy a house or get a car.
And listen, if you screwed up an account at a bank before this and think you won’t be able to get an account ever again, you’re wrong. Trust me. I’ll save my personal story on that for another post. But sit down with a banker and find out where you stand. Righting your wrongs in life should include your finances.
Like I said before, start with the first screw up and dig your way out of it. No more walking down main street with every penny to your name in your back pocket.