WILMINGTON -- When you write your rent check, is there always enough money in there before you send it out?
If the answer is no, local bank officials are warning, that might get you in to trouble in today's hi-tech day and age.
Check float: it's what officials call the time it takes between writing a check and it actually going through. Years back that might have taken a while.
Cape Fear Bank Senior VP and COO Lynn Burney said, "That float time may have been three to four days local to time to seven or eight days if it were a non-local item."
For some living pay check to pay check it used to buy them some time.
"It has never been a good practice to do that, and in today's day and age it definitely is not," Burney said.
But now, thanks to technology, check writers may not even have a second, let alone a day for their checks to be drawn on their account.
"Currently in our more electronic era you'll find that has gone away. It is non existent," Burney said.
Bank officials say, at least in terms of managing your money, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Even in today's technological age, to avoid mishandling your cash, it comes down to simple arithmetic.
"Always reconcile and balance your statement," Burney said. "Know exactly where you stand."
The check float changes are part of Check 21 that went into effect a while back. You may not have even noticed when Check 21 first began -- it was when you stopped getting your canceled checks returned to you, and got pictures of your checks instead.