11 Best Places to Cash Checks (No High Fees!)
I know what you’re thinking – cashing a check in this day and age? Isn’t that a little… old school?
Well, you’d be surprised how many side hustles will pay you in checks! And when you see those checks pour through your mailbox (that’s the dream!), you may want to cash them immediately.
But cashing a check can be a bit complicated. In fact, if you’ve started a profitable side hustle and are receiving your first checks, you may be confused about how it all works. If you receive checks from various income sources – knowing how to cash personal checks conveniently and inexpensively is a must.
Lucky for you, today I’ll be telling you how and where to cash your checks fast without paying unnecessarily high fees. Read on to find out all you need to know!
Check Cashing Near Me
When you’re looking for a place to cash a personal check, you’re most likely looking for something near you.
Convenience is key – but fees are also incredibly important. After all, you wouldn’t want to be paying a ridiculous 10% fee for cashing a personal check, would you? Especially if you have to cash checks over and over again – that could accumulate to a serious loss of profit over time.
That’s why I’ve listed check cashing options that are generally cost-effective, and did my best to provide as much information about their fees as possible. Because I’m sure, you’d like to keep as much of that hard-earned money as you can!
Bear in mind that the fees will vary by region, the type of check you want to cash as well as the amount of the check – but the good news is that the state regulates check cashing fees that a store can charge.
That said, not all check cashing places will be upfront about their fees, so it’s always best to ring up and inquire. Then you’ll make sure you’re getting the best deal.
11 Places to Cash Checks Near Me (Fast, Inexpensive & Reliable)
Here are the top 11 ways to cash a check in 2021:
1. Your Local Bank
One of the best places to cash a check is your local bank. In most institutions, account holders won’t be charged a fee for this service – and you can deposit your funds first, then withdraw the cash later.
Many other check cashing options will include a small fee – but if your bank offers free check cashing service, it’s probably your best bet.
2. A Local Credit Union
A credit union is another excellent option for cashing a check – perhaps an even better one because they usually charge lower fees than banks, and don’t require you to maintain a substantial minimum balance. Banks are for-profit while credit unions are non-profit, which explains the lower fees.
Local credit unions will cash almost all the checks that a local bank can cash, so look up the ones in your area – and you’ll probably find plenty, as credit unions generally offer more locations.
3. The Issuing Bank
If there’s a branch of the check writer’s bank nearby, you may also be able to cash your check there. You’ll be able to find the issuing bank info on the check itself, making things easier. It’s probably one of the easiest ways to cash a check – with a minimal charge, or for free.
By visiting the issuing bank, the teller will be able to look up the availability of funds immediately. As long as funds are available, they can cash the check and deduct any fee from the cash you receive.
4. Regions Bank
Regions Bank is another great option because they have many locations across the U.S. and offer personal check cashing services.
You will have to pay a fee of about 1% to 5% of the value of the check – and that may also depend on the type of check you have.
The good news is that you don’t have to have an account with Regions Bank to cash a check (and you may even get discounts – for example right now they’re offering a $10 discount to cash your Tax Check).
5. Local Retailers And Grocery Stores
Another convenient way to cash a check is at a grocery store or your local retailer. There are numerous grocery stores all over the U.S. that offer check cashing, such as:
- Walmart: You can cash checks up to $5,000 at Walmart, but two-party personal checks are an exception – you can only cash them up to $200. At Walmart, you can cash government, tax, 401(k) distribution, insurance settlement and cashiers checks. Bear in mind – you will pay a flat fee ($3) for checks up to $1,000 – but the charge will double for checks over $1,000.
- Kmart: Are you a member of Kmart’s “Shop Your Way” rewards program? If so, you can cash payroll and government checks of up to $2,000 and personal checks up to $500 – for less than $1 per check.
6. Gas Station Travel Centers
While most gas stations don’t cash checks anymore (due to the risk of check frauds) – many travel centers next to gas stations still do.
There are two well-known reliable travel centers in the U.S.: Pilot Flying J and TravelCenters of America. You won’t find them everywhere, but if you’re lucky to have one nearby, they’re definitely an option.
7. Transact by 7-Eleven
As I said, many gas stations don’t cash checks anymore – but if you live near a 7-Eleven, you could cash a check using their app, Transact by 7-Eleven.
It’s a great way to cash a check if you shop at 7-Eleven often because the funds will go directly into your reloadable prepaid card.
On the Transact by 7-Eleven app, take a picture of the check, upload it and wait around 48 hours for the balance to be deposited onto your 7-Eleven prepaid card. You will be able to spend the money in-store or on gas.
8. Cash Your Check Using an App
With PayPal, you can quickly cash a check by taking a picture of the front and the back of the check and uploading it on the app (up to $1,000 per day). The standard fee is 1% for government and payroll checks with a pre-printed signature – and 5% for all other checks, with a minimum fee of $5 per check. The money will be in your PayPal account within three business days.
IngoMoney is another super easy way to cash a check online – and you can redeem the money via direct deposit, PayPal account, prepaid debit card, Amazon gift card or use it to pay bills online. The process is really quick! That said, cashing handwritten personal checks will cost you from $5 for balances of less than $100 to 5% for balances higher than $100. Pre-printed payroll and government checks will cost $5 to cash for less than $250, and 2% for checks of more than $250.
9. PLS Check Cashing
PLS is available throughout the U.S., with stores in California, New York, Texas, Ohio, and other states. You can cash personal as well as government and payroll checks there – with fees depending on the type of check you’re cashing.
For example, a few of 1% + $1 applies to recurring government benefits, payroll checks, and PLS money orders up to $1,000. Then rates for cashing other types of checks (e.g., personal checks) will vary based on the type and the amount of check – so you’ll need to ask the store associate for information.
10. Money Services
Money Services offers instant cash checking for those who would rather not wait for their money! It’s also highly convenient since you’ll probably be able to find Money Services in a grocery store near you – so you don’t have to go out of your way.
They generally charge pretty low fees and often have special promotions allowing you to save. You can cash payroll, government, Income Tax Refund, Insurance Settlement checks as well as checks for businesses.
11. Friendly Check Cashing Store
There are also numerous check cashing businesses that may get the job done. Friendly Check cashing store is one of them – but it is only available to people in the North Carolina area.
At Friendly Check, you can cash insurance checks, payroll checks, government-issued checks, tax refund checks, cashier’s checks, money orders, checks made out of business, and personal checks.
However, they do charge high fees (they can be as high as 10%), which is why this should only be an option if all else fails.
Cashing a Personal Check: What You Need to Know
- Make sure you bring your I.D., your Social Security Number or Taxpayer Identification Number. You’re likely to need identification to cash a personal check – so don’t waste any time and make sure you’re prepared.
- Do your research to find the lowest fees. I’ve provided plenty of information to start with – but make sure you do some research to find out what’s the cheapest and most convenient way to cash a check in your area. You may need to call up some of the places that cash checks because many won’t disclose their fees. Best to be informed before you go in!
- Personal checks are riskier. Another thing to bear in mind is that personal checks are generally more risky for the person depositing them into their account – and they often have to go through a verification process to ensure it’s all good to go. During the process, the bank which issues the check will need to be contacted – so plan your time carefully to ensure there’s no delay in receiving your funds (for example, you may not be able to cash a check on Sunday because the issuing bank may not be open – so bear these things in mind).
Like it or not – paper checks are still part of our culture. Knowing how to cash them efficiently and without paying high fees can save you time and money.
The most important thing when cashing checks is choosing a reliable place that doesn’t charge you an expensive rate. Cashing a check doesn’t have to be costly nor tedious – if you know where to go.