Checking is a well known payment form as this offers the convenience of cash-less transaction but with relatively less interest rate compared to credit cards. All banks offer this type of financial transaction to their customers as this provides an easy access to their funds without having to go through the complicated online processes.

But there are pitfalls in checking accounts that every consumer should know. These pitfalls will not only cause trouble in your checking account but problem in general finances. A checking account is very easy to use and maintain but they can easily cause all financial problem if they are not used with care.

1. Balanced accounts – check is not like credit cards wherein you’ll automatically be prevented from future transactions because you’ve reached the credit limit. Always write down how much you have spent for the day and deduct the amount on your remaining funds to avoid issuance of bad checks.

2. Indicating fees – be very familiar with the fees attached in using checks. Banks will usually charge fees per transaction which means the fees should be added in balancing your checkbook. Fees on ATM transactions related to the checking accounts should also be indicated.

3. Avoid “Floating” checks – a floating check is an issued check with unapproved funds. Even though you have already deposited an amount in your bank, there is still a chance that your check will “float” because it may take a business day or two before it will reflect in your account.

4. Seek overdraft protection assistance – you may not be someone who will issue bad checks but there are situations wherein you might forget about the real balance in your account. Ask your bank to offer you this type of protection in order to avoid exorbitant “overdraft fees” charged by your bank.

5. Constantly get updates – use the internet, your phone or any form of communication that you can use to get the latest information about your checking account. Through constant updates, you should be able to have the right data and prevent transactions if there are no funds left on the account.

6. Simplify transactions – automating a lot of financial transaction will not only save you time but also money. Direct deposit from your employer can really help you maintain balance and an attached ATM card on the checking account will help you withdraw cash without going to the bank.

7. Get the bank’s attention immediately – never hesitate to complain if you see that something is wrong in your account. Investigate in your end if there’s any illegal transactions as the bank will also assist you in double checking your account. There is a possibility that you’re just unclear of the transaction but asking anyway is a form of assurance.

8. Avoid checking transactions online or over the phone – although it’s very convenient to use check to order online or over the phone, checks are more prone to overdraft and unsecured transactions. Never use checks with telemarketers to avoid further scams.

9. Know the advantages of checking accounts – there are times that you don’t really need a checking account. Know more about your spending behavior and see if your behavior can fit to the requirements in using checks in various transactions.

10. Compare bank rates – never accept bank offers just because they are having a special on checking accounts. Know more about their regular rates and their penalties and compare their offer to other banks.

A checking account is not just your simple debit card. There are other financial responsibilities attached to the checking account that should be noted to avoid financial troubles caused by checking accounts.