Today there are more demands on your time than ever before, so going to the bank isn't always possible - or necessary.
Why waste time and gas going to the bank to stand in line, when you can do much of your banking anytime, anywhere online, by telephone, or using your banking card.
Depending on the services your bank provides, you could access your account, pay bills, and check balances by telephone, on the Internet, or with one of your bank's other services.
For people with multi-faceted lives and hectic schedules, convenience is the name of the game, and modern banking technologies aren't just convenient; they save time and money.
Most banks let you access a long list of automated services by phone 24 hours a day. With this convenience you can:
. Check the balance on your checking or savings accounts
. Determine when checks clear or deposits post to your account
. Verify electronic deposits such as payroll and social security payments. With an Automated Clearing House system, you can also find out when checks are automatically deposited to your account
. Transfer funds between your business or personal checking or savings accounts
. Determine the balance on your line of credit
. Check CD and money market rates
You can also call your bank for more complex services like applying for a personal line of credit, credit card, or personal loan; getting help balancing your account; or stopping a payment. Since this often requires speaking to a banker, many banks only offer these services during standard working hours, but some provide it around the clock.
Automated Teller Machines are everywhere now, both at your bank's branches and in retail and public locations like supermarkets, gas stations, malls, and movie theaters.
You can use a retail ATM to get cash or check the balance on your checking or savings account. Some ATM networks charge service fees.
Bank ATMs also let you make transfers and view up-to-the-minute account information anytime. Your bank may not charge a fee if you use an ATM it owns, so save yourself some money by asking where your bank's ATMs are located.
To get more time to do what you really want to, take advantage of services like Direct Deposit and Automatic Deduction.
Use Direct Deposit to electronically deposit any regular monthly income - such as your salary, pension, Social Security, or Supplemental Security Income benefits - into your checking, money market, NOW, or savings account.
Automatic deductions are ideal for making regular payments like your rent or mortgage, utility bill, or savings plan deposit.
Bank Web sites have expanded, allowing you to manage your finances with a minimum of hassle, plus save time and money. Some services you may find on your bank's Web site are:
. View balances on your checking or savings accounts, loans, lines of credit and credit cards
. View past statements
. Transfer funds between accounts
. Pay bills securely
. Print check images
. Request stop payments
. Download information to budgeting software like Quicken
Regardless of your banking needs, a full-service bank should offer you the convenience and service you need in your busy life. Stop in and ask for help.
This article was written by Alan Boggs, Riverside Bank president in Brevard County.