When maintaining an checking or savings account at a financial institution, it is necessary to deposit funds to the account to increase the balance. This can be done in a variety of ways, from in person to online. These various methods are intended to offer you the maximum convenience so that dealing with your bank account is a smooth and easy process.
A counter deposit is done in person at your bank, usually face-to-face with a teller or other bank personnel. The easiest way to complete this type of transaction is to fill out a counter deposit slip before approaching the teller line. This slip usually requires your name, account number, the date and an itemization of the checks or cash you are depositing. If you do not have your account number, the teller can look it up for you as long as you have proper identification. While this is not always the most convenient method for depositing money, it can be particularly helpful to deal with an employee personally if you have a question or issue with your account.
Another form of the in-person deposit can take place at your institution's ATM. For this type of deposit, you simply need your debit card. Insert the card into the ATM and follow the onscreen instructions. Most ATMs require that you put your deposit inside an envelope, which will be provided by the ATM itself. The ATM will give you a receipt for your transaction, and the funds will be credited to your account. Be aware that if you use an ATM that is not owned by your bank, both your bank and the bank owning the ATM may charge you fees for usage.
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Direct deposit is a method of having payments made to you deposited into your account electronically with no need for any action on your part. ElectronicPayments.org states that as many as 145 million people in America use direct deposit as a method for receiving their paychecks or government benefits. This eliminates the need to perform a counter deposit or ATM deposit when you receive a check in the mail. If you wish to get set up to receive direct deposits, contact your payroll department or the government agency that issues your benefits. They will ask you for your routing number and account number, which are both found at the bottom of one of your personal checks. If you are unable to locate this information, call your bank and they will assist you.
Online Transfers and Deposits
It is also possible to deposit funds to your account using the Internet. Internet deposits are made by transferring money from one account and into your intended account. This is most often done between accounts at the same institution by logging onto your Internet banking account and following the procedure for transferring money from one account to another. However, some banks allow you to make deposits to your account with them by taking money out of an account with another bank. This is usually referred to as an external transfer, and can usually be authorized using your bank's website.
While most accounts allow you to deposit at any time with any of the above methods, there is one type of depository account that does not allow this activity. This is referred to as a time deposit. The most common type of time deposit account is a certificate of deposit. When you open a certificate of deposit, you are committing to not touch the money until the certificate expires. You can choose the term of the account, usually anywhere from a few days to several years. With this type of account, you must make one single deposit at the time that you open the account--usually done by giving the money to the person opening the account for you--and you may not add additional funds at a later date.