Check, Please! Do You Still Need a Checkbook?


When was the last time you wrote a check with a pen on paper that you physically took to a bank or mailed in an envelope or handed to a person? If you are an old lady like me, it was probably yesterday. It was definitely within the last two weeks because you sent checks as holiday gifts. If you are a young millennial like my kids, you probably don’t even have a checkbook. Does it matter?

Brief History of Checks

Checks have been around for awhile – like as far back as ancient times, but really getting going after clever Dutch people in the 1500s got tired of carrying heavy actual money around. My beloved Agatha Christie mystery books, written from 1921 onward reference “checques” on (usually overdrawn) checking accounts of the gentry. Cool infographic here.

Reasons You Need a Checkbook

I know we are trying to lighten and get minimalist, but I’d rid myself of Pokemon cards before I’d forgo the checkbook. The checkbook from your bank will either come in a small box or more likely in a narrow 8 ½ by 11 folder with six checkbooks glued to the sides. Slim, and not a huge hassle to store.

You might still need to write a check to a landlord, a small business, a local government for tax-related issues, as a way to save the processing fee of credit card use, if an electronic method isn’t working and you have to pay that moment, to keep a hard-copy record of something you’ve paid for, or to have something to wrap or put in a gift envelope that is more secure than cash. Not major reasons, perhaps, but for the minimal effort, it’s worth it to get some checks from your bank.