How Often Do You Check Your Bank Account?

This probably won’t be a surprise to you, but a new survey shows that people between the ages of 18 to 34 check their social media accounts three times as often as their bank accounts. Looking at Facebook and Twitter: fun! Checking your bank account: responsible, but not as fun!

I check my bank account twice a day—once in the morning, and once in the evening before I go to bed. There are a couple of reasons for this.

The first is that knowing how much money you have in your account gives you a better sense of how you’re spending. You know exactly where your money is going every day. This lets you know whether not you need to reel it in a little, or if you’ve been responsible and can sensibly spend some of it. My checking account shows that I haven’t withdrawn any money or charged anything to it in the past four days, so I can go to brunch this Saturday with two of my friends, and not worry that I’m spending too much.

The second reason is that I once ate at a restaurant and paid with my card, and a few days later, I noticed that there were charges on my account that I hadn’t made. Someone had decided to make a bunch of small purchases at a bunch of Targets upstate that added up to a large sum: $1,200, and I immediately reported it to my bank. There was an FBI investigation, and it turned out that one of the waiters at the restaurant I dined at was duplicating credit and debit cards using a swiper that would save information stored on a card’s magnetic strip. Because I caught it so early, the bank was able to quickly refund my account. Justice!

So, check your bank accounts. It takes just a minute.


13 Comments / Post A Comment

Will@twitter (#574)

Same thing happened to me… some NYC waiter swiped my card info and my number was then used to buy Pumas in King of Prussia. Caught it early, was refunded the money. Check your accounts every day!

solidgold (#476)

I have the email alerts in my online banking set up to send me my account balances every day. It’s really helpful and once you set it up you don’t have to think about checking every morning, it just shows up in the old inbox.

Sarah H. (#408)

Part of my new commitment to being Responsible With Money is forcing myself to check my bank account at least once a day. Old me would check maybe every three days or so (if that), and usually with a big wince on my face as I clicked the “login” button…

Norrey (#407)

Or use Mint, or something like it, you can check ALL of your accounts at once! Even if looking at your student debt on a regular basis makes you sad.

quatsch (#582)

@Norrey Yes! I check Mint about twice a day, because it exists on my futurephone right next to my social media jams.

allreb (#502)

People *only* check social media three times as often a their banks? Either I spend a lot more time on twitter or a lot less time checking my bank account than most.

Genghis Khat (#584)

@allreb I know! I was like…. I am on facebook CONSTANTLY and I check my bank account once a day. I mean, clearly I’m on FB too much, but still! There have to be tons of people like us.

mishaps (#65)

Seriously, your bank didn’t tell you about this problem before you even noticed it? My bank has shut down my card multiple times for the stupidest things, like going to a different UPS store than I usually use.

Mike Dang (#2)

@mishaps This was in the time when Washington Mutual was a bank and in the process of no longer existing. Perhaps that was the reason they didn’t catch the charges.

mishaps (#65)

@Mike Dang that makes sense. I would like to find a bank somewhere between distracted and hypervigilant – I don’t mind having to check Mint regularly as much as I mind having to defend my behavior to some neurotic algorithm!

Megano! (#124)

@mishaps Mine has too, and they never tell me either. It’s incredibly frustrating. Why can’t they call or send you an email? Because even if you check online it doesn’t say “SUSPENDED FOR FRAUD” or something. IT WOULD BE SO EFFING EASY TO DO THAT BANKS.

Megano! (#124)

I don’t keep more money in my chequeing than I think I’ll need, so I usually check it around once a day. Maybe every couple if I have no plans to buy anything.

I check mine 2-3 times a week, I’d say. Our spending mostly happens on the weekend, so I check in before and after that.

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