Managing Your Checking Account
When you use your debit card or write a check, do you know if you have enough money in your checking account to cover the transaction? Managing your checking account can keep you on top of your spending. Not knowing can cost you. If you write a check for more than your checking account account balance and do not have overdraft privileges, the check will bounce and you can be charged a non-sufficient funds fee. If you can overdraw, but do not have overdraft protection, you can be charged an overdraft fee for every transaction you make while you are in the red.
Following a few simple steps can help you avoid these expensive fees:
Check your account balance: If you know your account balance, you will know if you have enough money for a particular transaction. You can check it any time of the day by calling (845) 561-5607 or visiting hhfcu.org Don’t forget to subtract from the balance the amount of any automatically paid bills that will be deducted before your next deposit and outstanding checks.
Have a balanced budget: If you regularly find yourself short on cash and need to overdraw to pay for essentials, look for ways to reduce your spending and/or increase your income. Overdrawing can provide immediate relief but will probably only create more difficulties next month, when you are facing the same cash flow shortfall plus you have to pay back the amount you overdrew.
Use overdraft protection: It is best to avoid overdrawing or bouncing checks completely, but if you feel that may be difficult, consider overdraft protection. It deducts or charges any amount you overdraw from a savings account, credit card, or line of credit linked to your account. [If applicable: There is a fee for this service, but it is less than a bounced check or overdraft fee.]
Want more advice on managing your checking account? HHFCU has partnered with BALANCE to provide you with free financial education and counseling. Call 888-456-2227 or visit www.balancepro.net for more information.
Courtesy of Our Friends at BALANCE
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