A post by Madame X at My Open Wallet got me thinking about our own check usage over the years. I looked up our records in Quicken, which go back to Feb, 2003 and came up with these numbers:
2003: 38 (I think I lost a bunch of transactions when I switched from Money to Quicken)
First of all, I had no idea we were using so many checks, even though we haven’t had to order any for 2 years (when we bought our house).
The big drop this year is mostly due to one thing: 65-75% of our checks over the years are to our church or other charities. This year, in April, our church started using EFT through www.FaithDirect.net. Visually scanning through our checks in 2006, 28 of the remaining 41 checks wouldn’t be through Faith Direct, as they were for gifts, other churches, or other expenses (girl scout cookies, legal fees, Rockville Trash and Water, etc.)
So in 2007, I expect to use under 30 checks, maybe far fewer if I can set up our churches near out parents as pay payees in my online banking. I don’t necessarily have to give when I’m at the service. I can just send the check before or after that weekend.
So yes, check usage is definitely declining in our lives, but I can’t see it ever going away, or at least until we’re all implanted with RFID chips and Revelation is playing itself out!