Money Order Near Me – Where to get a Money Order
- Money Order Near Me – Where to get a Money Order
- What is a Money Order?
- How Does a Money Order Work?
- Why Should I Use a Money Order?
- Where Do I Find A Money Order Place Near Me?
- How Much Does a Money Order Cost Me?
- Money Order Scams: Why They Work
Money orders have been around for quite a while now. They aren’t the most advanced or fast payment method ever, but they can be incredibly useful. If you’re trying to figure out where to get a money order near me and you, good for you! However, you should take a moment to understand how these useful forms of payment work, why they are useful, and what could go wrong!
What is a Money Order?
The most basic definition of a money order is that it is a tool you can use to transfer money or even to make payments. It is the alternative to a standard check. However, while the purpose of both a money order and check is the same, there are some major differences between the two.
For one, a money order is a prepaid order, whereas a check isn’t. This means that the money order is usually backed by funding from a large organization. The point is that a money order is already funded, so there is no chance of it “bouncing” like fake checks do.
Money orders can be bought using cash or your credit card. If you want to know where to buy a money order near me, check out your local post office, bank, supermarket, and other locations (more on this later!). There is usually a restriction for how much a money order can be worth. Because of this it is sometimes necessary to buy multiple money orders.
When Should I Use a Money Order?
We live in a world where everything is paid for digitally. In times like these, money orders seem like ancient history. They can still be very useful, especially for people who don’t use a checking account. You can use a money order to pay your rent instead of relying on a bank account.
If, for example, you want to send some cash by mail, there are many risks. Cash can be lifted very easily. People can claim that they didn’t get the money you sent, when they actually did. Since money orders are payable to only one person, just like a check, your money is far safer. You can monitor when it was cashed so you know that the payment has been made.
Some organizations require that you use money orders instead of checks to pay them. This is because money orders, having been paid for upfront, are far less likely to turn out to be a scam. There is little to no risk of a money order bouncing, although there are still ways for people to forge money orders.
How Does a Money Order Work?
When you google “where to buy money orders near me” and walk into a store to buy your order, you pay the value of the money order (and a small service charge) upfront. You will be prompted to check that your name and amount is correct. Fill in personal details for yourself and your recipient on the front of the money order.
You can also write down the reason for the payment in the Memo line. The front is then signed, and you are given a receipt for the order. Keep this with you until the order has been cashed, in order to track its progress and save your own skin if issues arise.
Having bought the order, you can mail it or give it to the person or company you want to pay. They can sign the back and cash the order (after having provided ID to verify who they are).
Why Should I Use a Money Order?
Money orders are one of the many methods of making payments that exist today. When should you try and use money orders?
- As an alternative to using cash – Money orders can be made out to pay one specific person or company. This reduces (but doesn’t eliminate) the risk of it being stolen. If the money order is stolen, you can cancel it and issue it yet again. Losing cash is stressful because you can never get the cash back. This is especially true if you mail cash somewhere. The best part is the ability to track your order and get notified when it is cashed by your recipient.
- When you don’t want to use a bank account – If you don’t have a checking account with a bank for whatever reason, your best bet for making payments is a money order. You can pay the bills and your insurance premiums off with these orders each month. This isn’t the most cost efficient process, though, so look into alternatives if you are making regular, frequent payments.
- When you want to stay confidential – Personal checks, the most similar payment method to money orders, contain a lot of your personal information. These checks can show your address, mobile number, account details, names of your co-account owners, and more. If you feel like you can’t trust the person who is receiving your payment with this information, you should consider using a money order to pay them instead.
- When the seller asks for it – Some sellers, companies, and individuals will specifically ask you to use a money order when paying them. This is usually because they don’t want to take the risk of using a check to receive their payments. While cashier’s checks can offer the same level of security as the money order, many sellers prefer the latter.
- When you want to send money abroad – If you are someone who tends to send your money out of the country to friends, family, or business partners overseas, you can use money orders. They are safe and cheap. Money orders can be converted to the currency of the recipient’s country, and are accepted around the globe.
Where Do I Find A Money Order Place Near Me?
If you are wondering, “Where can I get a money order near me?”, do not worry. These orders are available for purchase just about anywhere you go regularly. Some of the most common include your local post office, convenience stores and groceries, Western union, Walmart, and many more. Many of these places also offer the service of cashing a money order you have received so if you’re wondering “where can I cash a money order near me?”, the answer is right in front of you!
How Much Does a Money Order Cost Me?
Money orders aren’t really that expensive! Of course, the actual cost depends on where you bought the order. Banks might not be the best place to go if you want to save money on your money order. The fees you are charged at banks are typically higher than anywhere else. You could get charged as much as $5 for a $1000 money order, based on the bank.
Walmart typically charges a lower fee of $0.70 for orders up to $1000. This is one of the cheapest places to get a money order. If you would prefer the US Postal Service, you can expect a charge of about $1.20 for $500 or $1.60 for $1000.
Western Union, on the other hand, has no set price that they charge you. You typically have to pay a maximum of $1 for every $1000 order you get.
The Advantages of Money Orders
There are many benefits you can enjoy when you use money orders instead of the many alternatives to it. Here are some of them.
Money orders today are made to prevent fraudulent cashing and use. They have watermarks (Benjamin Franklin, no less!) as well as special security thread developed by the US Mint. In a way, the security is similar to what cash has to prevent forgery and counterfeit notes. People who forge money orders can incur up to $25000 in fines as well as up to ten years in a federal prison. These consequences scare off most criminals, making money orders one of the safest forms of payment today.
- Safety for mailing
You can mail money orders without worrying about safety. Keep your receipt with you, and mail the money order to your recipient. If the order doesn’t reach your partner, simply call the place that issued the order and report the missing order. Return to the same store and get a replacement money order. This can cost you a small fee. You can also mail international money orders overseas if you need to pay someone outside the country in local currency.
- Easy to access and use
All you need to do to deposit or cash a money order is endorse it at your bank. Since many retailers today accept money orders as a form of payment, you can cash the order there less a small fee for convenience. If the money order you have was issued by the US Postal Service, you don’t have to pay a fee when you cash it at a post office. The purchaser of the order paid the fee when they bought it. Some check services will also cash your money order, although this can cost you a little more. Check out “where can I cash a money order near me” on the internet to find the cheapest places around.
- Easy to buy
Another huge benefit of using money orders is the ease with which you can find one and use it. All you have to do is look up “where to get a money order near me” and go to the nearest location. This can be a post office or a bank. Many grocery stores also sell money orders, and most tourist hotspots in the area will have a branch of Western Union or another company that can issue an order.
What are the Disadvantages?
Money orders are among the cheapest forms of payments out there as long as you only need one every now and then. However, if you are going to be making regular payments using these orders because you have no checking account, the “small” fees are going to add up very fast, especially for the larger payments that make you have to purchase more than one order per payment each time.
This payment method is safer than cash. It is still a target for many scammers and robbers. The easiest way to steal the money order is to physically steal the order and then rewrite the recipient’s information as their own on the document. Some scammers will also pay more than the amount needed to be paid, and then ask you to pay the difference back in cash. When you try to cash the money order itself, it turns out to be a fake, and you will have lost the money you paid the scammer.
Money orders are very easy to find and purchase. However, you still need to make a trip over to the store, buy the order and make the payment. Other forms of payment like online money transfers or even writing a check can be far more convenient for many people.
What Alternatives are Out There?
- Personal check
This is possible one of the most similar and obvious alternatives to getting a money order. It is only applicable in certain situations, though. Sometimes a seller will refuse to accept checks because of the risks. In other cases, you may not want to use a check because it gives the recipient your bank account information. Or, of course, it is possible that you don’t have a checking account.
If none of the circumstances described above apply, checking accounts and checks may be the best choice for you. You have access to online payments of your bills when you use a checking account too. This means you no longer have to write checks in order to pay off your creditors.
- Cashier’s check
Personal checks are not very secure. A cashier’s check is a version of a check that is far safer than a personal check and is one of the best money order alternatives out there. The check is signed by someone at the bank, and is issued with funds from the bank’s own account instead of your own. You have to pay the bank the funds that were issued. As long as you have sufficient funds in your account, there is no limit to how much you can pay using a cashier’s check.
Cashier’s checks are preferred by many recipients simply because of the security that the bank’s endorsement offers them. However, you may not want to use these checks for regular payments. They can cost a lot more than a money order, with some checks costing up to $10 to issue.
- Wire transfer
Wire transfers are a super fast way of sending money overseas or over long distances. They are a great alternative to money orders for one-time payments in emergencies. You need to go to a bank or to Western Union or MoneyGram in person. Use your recipient’s bank details and routing number to send the money directly to them very quickly.
The disadvantage of this method is that you have to pay a very high fee for the transfer. Local transfers can cost as much as $30 to send, and international transfers can cost even more. Only use wire transfers if you absolutely have to. Remember that the transaction is fast, so you won’t be able to cancel the transfer when it is sent out. Only use wire transfers to send money to people you know and trust.
- Prepaid VISA cards
Don’t need your payment sent anywhere and just need money to use? A prepaid debit card is the way to go. You get the ease of use that comes with a debit card from a bank, but you don’t have to bother getting a bank account to support your spending. Instead, you fund the card with your own money, either by recharging it online or by going to a post office or another location and charging it there.
Money Order Scams: Why They Work
The main reason scams involving money orders work is the security these orders offer. They are a safe way to get paid, which means that you lower your guard more than you should. You believe that you have been paid off, and you won’t worry about being tricked out of it. Always exercise caution when you are dealing with people who use money orders, just like you would with other forms of payment.
The Different Types of Scams
This is a scam in which you are sent a message from someone who is either in a different state or country. They say they want to, for example, buy an item you are selling. When the money order for the item arrives, it is for far more than the price of the item. They will tell you they made a mistake, and will ask you to return the excess money to them using your own money order. They will provide you with a variety of reasons as to why the mistake came about. If you send the excess money back, you will not have it returned to you.
This is one of the simplest ways to scam you. The money order you get is fake. When you send your product to the purchaser after receiving the order, you will find that they got it for free, and you are out of a lot of money.
This is a more complicated scheme. Someone will ask you to cash a money order on their behalf because they don’t have a bank account and don’t want to pay fees to cash the money. They say they will sign the order in your name and then pay you a sum for your services. You look up where to cash money orders near me and then cash it. You walk out with the cash, and that is that, right?
Wrong. When you deposit the money order into your account, you can use the money for a while. This is because the issuer of the order hasn’t sent the funds to your bank yet. When the bank tries to get the funds, the money order turns out to be a fake. Since they don’t have any money to support the order, the amount is deducted from your account again.
How to Protect Yourself from Getting Scammed
Spotting a money order scam isn’t hard if you know what to look for. Since life can be so hectic at times, though, it can be difficult to see the warning signs even if they are right in front of your face. One of the biggest red flags to avoid is any request to send back money you have collected off a money order. There are other warning signs as well:
- A spontaneous offer to pay you using a money order that you don’t know the origin of
- Any international money order from an issuer outside the US
- Any message that is not in good, formal English and looks hastily written
- Any refusal to pay you using online payments (no access to internet as an excuse, etc.)
- A buyer who has no clue about what they want to buy from you even though they have expressed interest in it
- Anyone who asks for your personal information
- Any offer which sounds too amazing to be true
Always Verify Your Money Orders
This is the easiest way to ensure that you are safe when paid with a money order. Call the issuer and tell them the reference number to ensure that the order isn’t a fake. Check with them for the security features on their orders, such as watermarks and heat patches.
If you are ever in doubt, simply don’t cash the order, and do not spend the money. Prepare to repay the bank if the order falls through. If you’re worried about the legitimacy of your order, ask your bank or an issuing institution near you for help.
Money orders are incredibly useful, but come with their risks. As long as you are careful with them, they can save the day in a number of situations. Remember to check out where to cash money orders near me safely to find out where you can cash an order without it coming back to bite you later!