//The Art of Balancing your Checkbook
Maintaining a checking account is one of the primary responsibilities of financial management. It requires that you keep track of all your purchases and transactions. You do this by recording them in your tracking register (the booklet that comes with your checks). Below are steps you can take to balance your checkbook and learn financial responsibility.
Use your register. Whenever you write a check or make an electronic transaction using an ATM or Debit card, you need to record the transaction in your register. The register is set up like a chart with rows and columns. In each row, there is an area to record the date; check number (if applicable); description of transaction; amount of payment; amount of deposit; and balance. There may also be a column where you can check off the transaction when you see it appear on your monthly or quarterly statement.
Maintain your balance. To adequately maintain your checking account, select the first empty row, fill in the transaction information in the appropriate boxes in that row and subtract (or add if it’s a deposit) the amount from the balance. Do this for each transaction you make. This will let you know how much money you have in your account and how much you can spend.
You’re on your way. You’ve now learned one of the first lessons in financial management. If you follow these simple steps of balancing your checkbook, you’ll be on your way toward maintaining your checking account and becoming a responsible member of the financial community.
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