In a move that’s sure to bring a smile to the face of many customers, ING Direct is now offering paper checks to go along with their formerly-paperless “Electric Orange” checking account. According to reports, they’ve been notifying customers of this feature, though I haven’t yet received notification.
Be that as it may, a review of their FAQs reveals this:
After my Electric Orange checking is opened, will I receive paper checks to write?
You won’t automatically receive checks to write, but you can order a checkbook of 50 checks for $5.00. If you prefer to pay electronically, you’ll still be able to make payments online or use your debit card for purchases.
Apparently these checks will include additional security features like extra digits that ensure only “valid” checks will be processed. I’m guessing that this means you’ll have no choice but to buy your check from ING as opposed to buying checks online.
While many of you may scoff at the need for paper checks, we still use them for all sorts of things. Sure, you can use online billpay to send a paper check to a payee that doesn’t accept electronic payments, but that doesn’t work very well for school fundraisers, sports registrations, etc.
For us, the lack of an online checking account with actual checks meant that we couldn’t completely ditch our local bank. Sure, we could keep most of our savings online to take advantage of the higher interest rates, but we still needed a “real” checking account.
Now if only they could get that remote deposit thing worked out. They’ve been hinting at it for months now, but they haven’t rolled it out yet. Need more evidence that remote deposit is on the horizon? Log into your account and click the “Transfers & Deposits” tab. From there, select “Deposit Checks” and you’ll be greeted with a message that states:
Depositing checks is about to get a whole lot easier.
Hang tight … we’re just dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s.
In the meantime, continue depositing checks the same ol’ way.
The same ol’ way refers to either depositing the check in a local bank and then transferring the funds electronically, or depositing checks by mail (click link for details). The first option is what I’ve always used, but it requires a local bank. The second way is workable, but slow.
Once they get the whole remote deposit thing figured out, we’ll have little use for a local bank, and may end up transitioning to an entirely online banking process. Until then, however, we’ll maintain the status quo. What about you?