What are Business Checks, How to Use Them, and Why You Need to Know
With most businesses switching to digital payments, you may be wondering if there’s any need for checks anymore.
However, many businesses still find it useful to write checks, whether regularly (for payroll purposes, for example) or for occasional expenses.
If you’re considering ordering some check stock for your business, you may be surprised at just how many options are available on this score.
Use the guide below to help you figure out whether check payments could suit your business, how to use them properly, and the type to opt for.
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What’s a Business Check?
A business check is a written order from a business’s checking account that allows businesses to pay expenses, including payroll and vendor services. There are two main types of business checks: laser-print and manual.
The former is produced using a computer, while the latter is manually written. Both types of checks may come with or without detachable stubs for use in accounting processes and to keep track of expenses.
Laser-printed checks are most commonly used in conjunction with high-volume business accounts, while businesses issuing just a small number of checks tend to use manual versions.
Business checks can be ordered from your local bank or credit union. Alternatively, they can be purchased via third-party vendors and non-financial businesses such as Walmart.
How to Use Business Checks?
Producing a business check differs depending on whether you’ve opted for a manual or laser-printed option.
# Using Manual Business Checks
This type of check comes with some details pre-completed, but the issuer will need to write in the rest manually. The details that need to be filled in are the payee, memo, issue date, and amount.
There are two types of manual business checks: business voucher checks and business wallet checks. The former features a place to write payment information, such as invoice number and payee details, in a detachable invoice box or pay stub that is useful for the bookkeeping process. Business voucher checks are available in a one-to-a-page or three-to-a-page format.
Business wallet checks are usually the size of personal checks – therefore, smaller than regular personal checks.
# Using Laser-Print Business Checks
These business checks allow businesses to produce checks digitally using their accounting software. Businesses often prefer laser-print business checks as they’re more convenient to produce, clearer to read, easier to track, and appear more professional.
Computer checks are available in several formats: the top of the page, the middle of the page, the bottom of the page, and three-to-a-page.
You could also opt for a laser wallet, which is like the three-to-a-page format, but features space for pay stub information, or blank business stock, which allows users to print the amount and payee details as well as the business account and routing number.
Some laser-print business checks have security features such as fluorescent fibers, holograms, watermarks, and heat-sensitive ink, all designed to prevent forgery and fraud.
Why it’s Important to Get it Right
Errors in the issuing of business checks can cost in terms of both time and money. Issuing a check for the wrong amount could not only cause your business to be significantly out of pocket but can make a dent in the perceived professionalism of your enterprise.
Plus, errors in check issuing can also make it almost impossible to reconcile your business accounts properly, which can have tax and compliance implications – not to mention eating into your valuable time in trying to figure out what’s happened.
What Type of Check is Most Suitable for My Business?
There are several important things to take into account to ensure you choose the right type of business check to use. If your business employs staff, then computer-issued checks are likely to be ideal.
These checks can be synced with your payroll software for ultimate convenience – this also ensures that all the details are logged and stored correctly.
Businesses with multiple bank accounts may find blank business checks the best option. This type of check does not feature the bank routing information or the business account number, which allows business owners to print checks from different accounts without needing to switch between different checkbooks.
If you’re a freelancer or sole proprietor who doesn’t use checks regularly, it still may be a good idea to have some check stock handy, just in case.
Wallet-sized manual business checks are likely to be most suitable and will save you the expense of ordering computer checks while giving you the option to write a check now and again if needed.
Using Business Checks: Key Takeaways
Many businesses use business checks to allow them to make payments from their company checking accounts. Business check stock comes in various formats, allowing the business owner to choose the type of check that will best suit their needs.
It’s vital to ensure that business checks are properly used – errors can result in a loss of time and money and can impact the professional aspect of your company.
Even freelancers or businesses that rarely need to use a check may find it useful to have checked stock handy, just in case!
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