Double Check Your Bank Receipts

Posted by Mrs Money on February 10th, 2010

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The greasy receipt
Creative Commons License photo credit: ilovememphis

One of the things that I consider most important about saving money while shopping is to make sure you check your receipts. I can’t tell you how many mistakes I’ve caught with either the cashier typing something in incorrectly, or an item not ringing up on sale when it should have. Nonetheless, it’s a pretty important step to ensure that you are saving the most money possible whenever you’re buying groceries or goods.

The other day I was at work and decided I was going to use some snowflake money to make a principal only payment on our mortgage.  I told the teller that I’d like to apply that to principal only, gave her the check and payment slip, and went back to my station.  A few minutes later, she brought my receipt back.  I looked at it and realized that it said “regular payment”.  I told her of the error, she corrected the mistake, reversed the transaction, and applied the funds as principal only.  No harm, no foul.

But what would have happened if I didn’t catch that?  It wasn’t a lot of money, but the point was that I am making an effort to pay a little bit extra on the mortgage to reduce the interest I pay, and the term of the loan. It’s not only the financial aspect, it’s also the emotional aspect that I feel good that I’m making an effort.  My efforts would have been in vain had I not caught the mistake.  I’m glad I double checked my receipt.

Moral of the story: check your bank receipts after conducting transactions.  We all make mistakes.  It’s better if you catch it in the beginning though!

Do you always double check your bank receipts?

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18 Responses to “Double Check Your Bank Receipts”


  1. Ken says:

    No…I don’t check them often enough…thanks for the heads up.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Ken- No prob! Hopefully you won’t have any problems. :)

    [Reply]

  2. Mama Geek says:

    I check every receipt I get, whether it’s from the bank or a store. I usually catch at least one screw up every time I do my errands and problems can range from being charge an extra $.50 for an item to the bank depositing the money in the wrong account.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Mama Geek- I have found so many mistakes by checking my receipts! It’s scary when the money gets deposited into the wrong account.

    [Reply]

  3. Evan says:

    I always check the receipts but I never keep them, my parents freak out when I just throw/shread them.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Evan- I think it’s good if you check them and then throw them away if they are right. :)

    [Reply]

  4. Robert says:

    I’m a big proponent of online banking. I take out $20 at the ATM and have the ability to check my statement online more or less instantly. It’s great! I actually caught an error once–the bank charged me $40 for a $20 withdrawal.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Robert- That is great you caught that error! Sometimes ATMs do mess up. ;)

    [Reply]

  5. I cannot believe how often things like that happen. The last time I was at my bank, the same exact thing happened to the customer in front of me. I think this advice could expand to checking ALL of your receipts/bills — retail, restaurants, banks.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    RainyDaySaver- I totally think you should check all receipts. I can’t believe how often mistakes happen!

    [Reply]

  6. As a routine traveler I use to submit expense reports and assume all was well. After a couple of years I heard about a double charge from a hotel with a co-worker. Ever since I reconcile every payment. In the last 8 years I have saved easily over $3000 in errors!

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    LeanLifeCoach- Wow! That is crazy! That’s a lot of money. Thanks for sharing your success story. :)

    [Reply]

  7. I’m soo bad at checking my receipts after I buy something at the grocery store. I really should make it a point to do that… The times I have checked though, I haven’t found any problems though. Often I catch them WHILE they’re ringing things up (with most grocery stores now showing your items being rung through on the computer).

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    youngandthrifty- I think it takes a little time to get used to doing it, but it’s definitely worth it! Hopefully you won’t find anything wrong. :)

    [Reply]

  8. Megan says:

    One of the only reasons I like self-checkout at stores is that I have control of how fast the items are being rung up. Sometimes when the cashiers get going it’s hard to watch all the numbers!

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Megan- I like doing that too. My hubby gets mad because I want to go fast. I try to leave him at home. ;)

    [Reply]


Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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