Just received my Gas Bill from British Gas.

On Sat, 1 Mar 2008 18:15:17 +0000 (UTC) someone who may be Ed Sirett

It costs time to reconcile payments into a bank account with invoices. I'm not convinced either method of payment has any time advantage for the business.
Paying in cheques can be incorporated into other activities, so it need not take a huge amount of extra time. It can also be made to take a huge amount of time if not organised.
--
David Hansen, Edinburgh
I will *always* explain revoked encryption keys, unless RIP prevents me
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On 2008-03-02 09:02:42 +0000, David Hansen

There are additional steps in processing cheques.

That depends on the volume, the type of business and the mix of payments.
If I am receiving predominantly credit card payments or BACS payments in my business and cheques are in the minority (as they should be), then this is all extra work.
The same is true for the consumer.
If I pay for something by DD and there is a mistake, it is reversed out and the money appears on my account. The same is true for a credit card payment.
If I receive a cheque, it's a PITA. I have to go to the town, find a parking space, pay for it and spend time waiting in a queue to pay in a silly bit of paper. There's no value to anybody in that apart from to whoever is operating the car park. To the bank it's a cost because it involves having premises and the staff in them.
Do your bit for the ecosystem. Don't order that replacement cheque book. Fewer trees chopped down. Less fuel used to move them around. You know it makes sense.
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How bizarre. Do you have some sort of antiquated bank?
At least 15 years ago I rememeber seeing banks offer automated deposit machines, so no queue. And I've never had to find a parking space and pay for it to go to the bank, but that could be because I choose where I live and how I travel to avoid such hassles. Helps with post offices too :-)
Nowadays most of our cheques get posted - freepost envelopes provided by the bank.
clive
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No more than any other.

Using one of those is not a smat move. They simply give a receipt that an envelope was deposited. Who's to say what's inside? It gets lost or there's a mix up and the first you know is that money hasn't appeared in teh account many days later. Then you have to pursue the issue with the bank and ask the drawer of the cheque to put a stop on it and issue a new payment. Hopefully by this time, he will have set up a BACS arrangement and won't use paper payment again.

Don't get me started on Post Offices. I could drive further and park ouside a bank directly, but that's even more time. To be honest, I am not going to select place of residence based on being convenient for a bank that I use perhaps once a year and a Post Office that I use little more than that.

What a PITA
One still has to write and post the stupid things. I can do a BACS transfer in 20 seconds at the most - a minute (once off) if it's a new payee.
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On Sun, 2008-03-02 at 16:29 +0000, Andy Hall wrote:

Not at the Nationwide - it scans the cheque, and gives you a picture of it on your receipt.
Mike
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I wouldn't dream of dealing with an ex-building society bank. I've tried 2 or 3 at various times and found them dreadful.
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On Sun, 2008-03-02 at 18:11 +0000, Andy Hall wrote:

The Nationwide is quite definitely still a building society, and has made considerable efforts to ensure it stays that way. I don't think many of the ex-building societies are still around, except as brand names of the banks that bought them. As it happens I don't have any accounts with banks (former building societies or not), but do have accounts with three building societies and National Savings.
Mike
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Oh dear.
Last time I went into one of those, they were still in the mindset that they are doing their customers a favour by agreeing to do business with them. There was a queue almost out of the door while the cashiers nattered about goodness knows what with each customer - didn't have anything to do with financial transactions as far as I could tell.
Fortunately, these outdated organisations are in steady decline to oblivion.
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I agree.
However, the Nationwide does not fall into that category.
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On Sun, 02 Mar 2008 18:11:32 +0000, Andy Hall wrote:

I am a happy Nationwide customer. This is the only national true mutual BSoc left. When all my cards were stolen this was the most effective, helpful and quickest organization to deal with. [Abbey was the worst needing to send out the passcodes three times].
I can move all the money around internal accounts in seconds.
They do not have much in common with C19 building societies except that it's mutual and they pay higher interest rate.
It is interesting to note the route by which I became a Nationwide customer:
In order to have an account with a trading name Nat West charge a three digit sum, based on transaction volume. So I opened a "treasurers' account" with the Nationwide. Thus I could pay in cheques made out to my trading name. I asked NatWest to do the same when they refused I moved my account to the Nationwide to simplify the clearance of such cheques. This is a classic example of the inflexibility of the bank losing a customer of 30 years.
To be fair Nationwide lost a Charity account because they did not give me an adequate explanation as to why they paid four times more interest on personal deposits as opposed to 'corporate' deposits. I pointed out that the transaction pattern of the Charity was very similar to a personal savings account and not a business. Not even head office were able to give me a good enough answer.
--
Ed Sirett - Property maintainer and registered gas fitter.
The FAQ for uk.diy is at http://www.diyfaq.org.uk
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IME you worry unnecessarily.

Bank, post office, shops, station - lots of things. Wouldn't necessarily have occurred to us before, but we know if there ever needs to be a next time. You missed the other bit, which is suitable mode of transport - I don't have parking worries...

No, we're talking about when we get cheques from people - hence your comment "If I receive a cheque" and my "envelopes provided by the bank". Posting isn't a PITA - post boxes aren't really that rare.
clive
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I don't worry at all. I just avoid being involved with cheques if it can be avoided.

I don't have parking worries either. I avoid using places where parking is a pain if at all possible.

There's no need for the use of cheques at all, so the issue is as equally true for sending as well as receiving payment. I don't write cheques to send to people unless there is absolutely no alternative. I will choose a different supplier if one won't accept EFT in some form. Equally, I see no reason for somebody sending me money to waste my time and theirs by sending bits of paper. It isn't necessary.
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Nonetheless, you have spent more time posting on this topic (and indeed, I have spent reading it) than I have spent dealing with cheques in the last year.
--
"Be thankful that you have a life, and forsake your vain
and presumptuous desire for a second one."
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I know.
Just doing my small bit to hasten the demise of outdated methods.
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Andy Hall wrote:

Demise.
Strangely enough, its harder to forge a signature than to forge a PIN...
I wouldn't say cheques are as outmoded as you think.
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That would assume that they are checked (or even chequed)
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Andy Hall wrote:

audit trail. If one arrivse with someone elses sig. on its pretty clear its the banks fault.
And its a lot harder to duplicate a chequebook than a credit card..
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Hmm....
I'm not sure that that matters when there are numerous card holder protections in the event of this and other CC frauds.
I don't think that either are compelling arguments to justify continuation of the use of cheques. I did also include BACS and DD etc in the realm of non-cheque payment methods
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wrote:

Going back to the old saying "the customer is always right" then they should be able to pay anyway they like. I take paypal on ebay sales even though it cost me extra.
What I object to is BT charging 3.75 to provide a paper bill. It can't cost that much! (1.25 per month "discount" for paperless billing, one bill every 3 months).
M.
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On Wed, 05 Mar 2008 09:29:30 +0000 someone who may be Mark

That is my view too.
When I am in customer mode if a supplier is arrogant enough to try and force me to use one form of payment then I look around for a less arrogant supplier to do business with.
--
David Hansen, Edinburgh
I will *always* explain revoked encryption keys, unless RIP prevents me
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