People often think of ATMs as places to withdraw money from a bank account. However, many of these cashiers allow you to deposit money, too. The process varies by bank and teller, and you should check the financial institution's policies and follow the machine's messages, but the following steps are usually relevant for most ATM transactions.
Method 1 of 2: Depositing with an envelope
Step 1. See if the ATM accepts deposits made in envelopes
Smaller cashiers and outside banks, such as convenience stores or supermarkets, may not have this function. If there is no space marked for releasing or inserting envelopes, the machine will not accept this type of deposit.
- Some modern ATMs may only accept non-envelope deposits.
- Your bank may not allow deposits at unaffiliated cashiers. Check your financial institution's policies.
Step 2. Enter the debit card and your password
This part of the process is equal to a cash withdrawal.
Locate the "deposit" tab on the screen or the corresponding button indicated by it (on older machines). If you don't have a deposit option, you've been out of luck with this machine
Step 3. Endorse the checks to be deposited
Sign in the marked area on the back of them.
Add "deposit only" below your signature for added security. If you lose this endorsed check, it can only be deposited, not cashed
Step 4. Prepare a deposit slip
If you decide to use a slip from your checkbook, your name, address and account number should already be on the sheet.
- If you are using a blank deposit slip, such as those available at bank branches, fill in your name, address and account number. Date all of these tabs.
- Note the total amount of money to be deposited on the marked line and individually list the checks in the spaces provided on the front (and if necessary, on the back) of the tab.
- Write the total amount of all checks and money to be deposited on the line provided.
- You do not need to sign the deposit slip when depositing funds at an ATM. Signature is only required when withdrawing money from a deposit made at a cashier.
- For convenience and security reasons, you may prefer to sign checks and prepare deposit slips in advance. Decreasing your time at the ATM is safer and less likely to disturb those in line behind you.
Step 5. Use the deposit envelope provided by the ATM
Older machines may have a door to lift to reveal envelopes, while newer machines may simply release sheets through an entrance.
- Even if you have organized your deposit in another envelope, transfer it to the one provided by the machine.
- Insert all checks, cash and deposit slip into the envelope and seal it securely.
- Fill in the blank lines on the outside of the envelope with all the information requested, such as your name, date and deposit amount.
- The machine may ask you if you need more time to prepare your deposit. Press the indicated button to give yourself a few extra minutes to organize everything.
Step 6. Insert the complete, sealed envelope and verify your deposit
The place where the envelope is inserted must be clearly marked and may be indicated by flashing lights. It may also be the same place you received the deposit envelope.
- When asked, before or after making the actual deposit, enter the total amount. If you need a reminder, write the amount on a piece of paper first.
- Be precise. The bank will be able to correct the differences, but if you get everything right the first time, the process will be faster and easier.
- Confirm that you want to receive a receipt and keep it, at least until the money is deposited.
Step 7. Wait for the deposit to drop
Cash or envelope checks are manually counted and entered into the account, so funds will not be available immediately.
A common waiting time for funds from an ATM deposit to become available is two business days after the deposit. That is, if you deposit funds on Monday, they will be available on Wednesday. However, if you deposit them on Sunday, which is not a business day, they will also be available on Wednesday. Banks need to account for machine deposits until noon to count that business day
Method 2 of 2: Depositing without an envelope
Step 1. See if the cashier accepts non-envelope deposits
These are increasingly becoming the standard for ATMs at overseas bank branches, and are becoming more common elsewhere. Look for warnings on the screen or on the machine itself.
- Non-envelope cashiers often have separate, well-marked entries for cash and checks.
- Insert your card, enter your password and follow the instructions to make the deposit. The machine will at some point check whether you can make non-envelope deposits.
Step 2. Endorse and prepare checks
You will not need a deposit slip for a non-envelope transaction.
It may be better to add up the total amount of your check deposits beforehand to compare the amount with the amount tabulated by the cashier. You can check deposited checks individually if there is a difference
Step 3. Insert checks in the marked space when prompted
Many machines can read checks regardless of orientation, but it doesn't hurt to stack them neatly and face in the same direction.
You don't need to enter checks one by one on most newer machines. The total number you can enter at one time should appear on the screen or on the machine. A certain North American bank network, for example, allows a maximum of 30 checks at once
Step 4. Check the total amount and complete the transaction
You will be able to check each check individually and make corrections if necessary.
- Many machines offer the option of printing an image of the front of the checks on your receipt. Use it if you want more proof of deposit for your records.
- Rejected checks (those with illegible print or handwriting, for example) must be returned to you at the end of the transaction. If not, contact the bank.
Step 5. Deposit money at the appropriate inlet according to the machine's limit
A common limit is 50 notes.
- Again, the ATM should be able to read the money in any direction, but a well-organized pile will advance the process.
- Unlike envelope deposits, cash and checks will need to be deposited in separate transactions. Deposit one, indicate you want to make another transaction when prompted on the screen, and then deposit the other.
Step 6. Find out when deposits will be credited to your account
It will depend on the financial institution.
- One advantage of non-envelope cash deposits is that funds are immediately available in your account as they have been scanned and confirmed. Envelope cash deposits, on the other hand, need to be opened, counted and credited. If you need to add funds to your account right away and don't have access to a cashier, an envelope-free cash deposit may be your best choice.
- Check deposits will still need time to be validated after posting. Some banks consider non-envelope check deposits made by 8 pm to be posted on that business day, so the money must be credited on the second business day (if deposited on Monday, it will be credited on Wednesday, for example).
ATM deposit procedures vary by machine and bank. Follow the onscreen instructions for more accurate directions
- Caution. It's best to keep your password and other financial details hidden away from ATMs. The places where these machines are located are prone to theft and fraud.
- Don't forget to take your card with you when you're done.