Have you wondered if there are places you can cash out a check, even if you don’t have a bank account? If you do. That shouldn’t be your concern. What then should? What should, is the best place to cash out a check at a minimal or no fee? And most important seamless and easy. So this post is primarily written to help you navigate through many ways you can cash a check at a low fee and for free, even if you don’t have a bank. Only keep reading.
To begin with, I would like to say that a good number of Americans often have no problems cashing a check. Reason being that there are many options at their disposal to help cash a check within minutes with no fee attached.
What do you mean? Major retailers, or the payer’s bank or credit union, can cash a check for a small fee. But the better option is your own financial institution.
In other words, all you have to do is to simply walk into a branch or upload a picture of the check, and your bank will deposit it into your account. That’s for people that have accounts.
If you don’t have a Bank
You can take the check to the local Check Cashing Store with a valid driver’s license and they will cash your check for a fee. The fee is $10.00 or 5–10% of your Check. Although, this can get expensive. In other words, you will eventually need to open up your own checking account at the local bank or credit union.
However, if you know someone with Chase or Bank of America, you can ask them to deposit it in the ATM at their bank for you. Afterward, the bank clears the money to their account and they can then pay you the money in cash.
It’s estimated that over 67 million U.S. adults don’t frequent banks. More or less, don’t have a bank account. Truth be told, without a bank account, you will have to pay to cash your check.
Although, there are a few occasions where you can actually cash a check without paying a fee. But that depends on the place you are cashing the check. More so, the payable fee for cashing a check varies by banks or stores.
Notwithstanding, I will be showing you the best places you can cash a check, even if you don’t have a bank account. But before I proceed, take it to heart that before a check is being cleared, you will need to provide a valid ID.
Best Places to Cash a Check
First, I would like to say that before you try to get cash, make sure the check is legitimate. If you try to cash a check that is not legitimate, you can get into legal trouble, get ripped off, or end up owing fees to the bank.
However, you can simply walk into stores and cash a check. I’m going to be talking about the best stores you can cash a check below. But before that, let me give you a snippet of the best and no option places where you can cash a check.
Cash a Check Without a Bank Account
It’s possible to cash a check without a bank account, but it’s not as convenient and you’ll pay some fees.
How to cash a check without a bank account, but you have ID:
- First, cash it at the issuing bank (this is the bank name that is pre-printed on the check)
- Second, cash a check at a retailer that cashes checks (discount department store, grocery stores, etc.)
- Third, cash the check at a check-cashing store
- Finally, deposit at an ATM onto a pre-paid card account or checkless debit card account
All of these options will have fees and may be time-consuming. The fees might be small, but they add up. If you’re earning $300 a week and paying $7 to cash your paycheck, that’s 2% of your paycheck used just to convert your paycheck to cash. That’s $360 in fees per year!
Save yourself money and time and open a bank checking account. Once you have a checking account, you can probably get the direct deposit (your employer deposits your paycheck directly into your account) or you can deposit your check through an ATM.
However, in the case that you want to cash a check without going through the account opening process, you can try any of the options below.
Cashing a Check at Kmart
See, the first best place to cash a check is at Kmart. Why? The reason is simple. Kmart offers discount lowest check-cashing fees, among others.
In detail, the Kmart store charges $1 to cash payroll, government, tax, or two-party personal check and a rarity.
Not minding that those personal checks are the riskiest type of cash. Still, in places like Illinois and Rhode Island, Kmart charges only 50 cents to cash a check. But the amazing thing is that this retailer’s store check cashing service is free in eight states. That includes Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, New Jersey, Nevada, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Washington—along with Guam and Puerto Rico.
Cashing a Check at Walmart
To begin with, Walmart by far is one of the largest retailers around the globe. That said, its services cut across check-cashing. And the store has been doing so well in check cashing for years now.
However, their primary aim of helping you clear your check is so you buy stuff from them. Because they know that the moment you are well equipped with cash, buying becomes a lot easier and smoother.
Walmart charges $3 on checks up to $1,000 but can be as low as $1 in some markets. More so, they also charge $6 for checks that are over that amount, up to $5,000. The good news is that you can clear just any type of check-in at Walmart stores. Starting with payroll, government, tax, insurance settlement, retirement disbursement, and cashier’s checks. Although Walmart doesn’t cash personal checks.
Cashing Checks in Grocery stores
Although this option is limited to loyal customers who frequent those stores. Be it as it may. If you have a shopper card, Kroger and many of its affiliates charge $3 for checks up to $2,000 and $5.50 for those that are over that up to $5,000.
Another Grocery store to cash your check is H-E-B grocer. Its fees start at $3 and vary by location. Neither Kroger nor H-E-B cashes personal checks, but they do cash payroll, government, and insurance checks. Other regional or local grocery stores may also provide check-cashing. So, I would suggest you visit their customer service to find out.
Note: cashing government checks at major banks like Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Wells Fargo, etc. is in many cases uneasy except if you have an account with them.
It’s also important to note that many banks charge between $7 and $8. However, PNC bank is the standout by charging no fee on checks that originated from its account holder. In other cases, a bank may waive a fee if you open a checking or savings account. Even with the fees, you’re getting a decent deal cashing personal checks at a bank—if you can’t get to a Kmart—then relying on check cashiers. Community banks and credit unions may also offer competitive check-cashing rates.
Cashing a check through Check Cashers
If other options of cashing a check are not within your reach. As a result, you can cash a check with a check cashier. Although, their fees are always the highest. There are several check-cashing outlets. Be it as it may dot urban streets or strip centers are part of larger outfits offering services like payday loans and money orders.
It will interest you to know that fees at check cashers are regulated by state law. Although, how much you will be charged vary depending on the state and type of check.
Let’s look at the below example:
Check cashers in Delaware can charge 2% of a check’s value or $4, whichever is greater, for all checks, even a personal check. But in California, a check-casher can charge up to 12% of the value of a personal check.
Be very much aware that many states have no regulations, so check cashiers can charge whatever they like.
Other ways to Cash a Check
There exist other ways to cash a check. But this option will come in handy for people who don’t need cash, but just want to have access to their check funds.
As a result, if you happen to be, you can consider a prepaid debit card account. But you need to know that that doesn’t exempt you from paying a certain amount of service fees. Such as pay–monthly service fees, check-deposit fees, and cash reload fees, and a lot more other fees.
But the good thing is that you can do direct deposit payroll and government benefits checks on the prepaid card. But the best of it all is that you can access the funds almost immediately. Other cards come with the ability to load any check onto the card within minutes by taking a picture of the check, again for a fee.
Cashing a Check in a Bank – Best Option
Finally, Fifth Third Bank makes things easy for their customers. In that, they offer an Express Banking account that lets account holders immediately access check deposits—sometimes for free if the customer averages 16 transactions a month.
However, for low-transaction customers, immediate access to a deposited check is 4% on personal checks; 2% on payroll, government, and other official checks; and 1% on Fifth Third checks.
The best of it all is that the account has no minimum balance requirements, charges no monthly service or overdraft fees, and comes with an optional debit card.
In the End
If you get a payment by check, you can cash it whether you have a bank account or not. The best long-term solution is to get a checking account, either at a brick-and-mortar bank or with a bank that provides strong online checking accounts, but you can cash a check even without an account.