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Check what you need before printing checks

Check printing allows you to adjust purchased checks and prevent them from suddenly being depleted. It’s also cheaper than buying checks at banks. However, following standard banking practices (such as magnetic ink) can make printing checks more trouble than it’s worth. Familiarize yourself with the process, software and other necessary equipment check print at home and how many you’ll need each month or over a year to see if it’s worth the effort.

To optimize your check printing process, you should understand your needs before starting the process. Instant checks in the mail can make a huge difference in streamlining financial transactions, saving time and managing pre-printed checks efficiently. By opting for a modern check printing solution like instant checks by mail, on-demand check issuance is possible, saving you worry and time.

To create checks you will need the following items:

  • Check formatting software
  • Check stock paper with security features to prevent duplicate or altered check.
  • Printer
  • Magnetic Ink Character Recognition (MICR) font to print computer-compatible numbers at the end of each scan
  • Magnetic ink

Magnetic check printing software

Creating checks requires specialized graphic design skills and the checks need to be designed the way you want them to be. But check printing software does it for you, and the software is relatively inexpensive—especially if you can spread the cost over a large volume of checks.

You already have the required items. The most popular money management software programs, such as Quicken and QuickBooks, will help you make the payment by filling out the parts of the check and printing the check. Additionally, these programs can help you track the payments you make by recording them in your ledger after the check is printed.

Other alternative software vendors help you create controls. For example, cloud accounting software Xero allows you to customize the design of your check and include bank details in MICR format. Then you can do the checks.

Check stock paper

Check Stock works with a wide range of printers and printing software. It is designed for printing checks and usually comes with additional security features such as microprinting, security alerts and watermarks. Some control materials are pre-perforated to facilitate cutting.

You can purchase paper check supplies at office supply stores and online retailers. It is more expensive than normal paper due to security features; however, their safety is worth it.

Printer (or printing company)

Print your checks on almost any printer, including inkjet, laser and offset printers. Some check printers include features that improve their security checks, including watermarks and thermochromic ink, but you can also use any standard home office printer. All you need to do is make sure the printer can work with the magnetic ink used to print the MICR code.

Consider hiring a check printing organization to create checks with your MICR number. You can then insert the checks printed on the printer, including the date, payee, amount and notes. This way there is no need to use special inks and download the MICR font.

MICR

Bank information, including routing and account numbers, is entered in MICR at the bottom of the check. The MICR code, also known as the MICR line, is essential to the character reading technology used by the computers that process the checks.3 The advantage of this is that the characters can be easily read by humans. Once the information is processed, the bank’s information is converted into digital data, which is then used to facilitate the transaction.

Magnetic ink

The MICR line can be recognized by computers even if it is obscured by other inks or markers because the magnetic ink works in conjunction with the MICR technique.

It’s okay to use magnetic ink these days. Mobile check deposit, for example, takes a photo of the check to deposit the check, eliminating the requirement to use magnetic ink. Many banks also use in-branch scanners for checks that allow optical instead of magnetic reading.23

Counter checks

If you need one check but want to avoid printing it yourself, your bank may be able to issue counter checks. In this case, you may require a check that has been canceled to set up direct deposits, or you may need an actual paper check. Banks generally offer a small amount of checks with printed account details for a nominal price. Contact them in advance and ask if it is possible to obtain counter checks before visiting the site.






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