No Bank Account, No Problem!

Income TaxIf you don’t have a bank account this tax season then you might feel at a disadvantage. While everyone is getting their refund back quickly, you have no choice but to wait for a paper check in the mail. The good news is you don’t have a bank account anymore to get a fast refund. You can use a prepaid card. Instead of waiting six or more weeks for a paper check to arrive you can have your refund automatically deposited to a prepaid card.

Here are some of the benefits prepaid cards provide:

  • Safe Place To Keep Your $: The best prepaid cards are FDIC insured, so your money is safe. This means you don’t have to carry around cash or a paper check.
  • Faster Refund: It only takes about two weeks to get your refund when it’s done electronically. If you have to wait for a check in the mail it usually takes about 6 weeks, maybe longer.
  • Can Be Used Anywhere: Prepaid cards can be used anywhere. You can pay bills, shop online or do the grocery shopping.
  • Saves You Money: Using a prepaid card will allow you to avoid paying costly check cashing fees.

Finding The Right Card for the Job

In order to get the right card you need to do your research. Not all prepaid cards are created equally, especially when it comes to fees and direct deposit. A good place to start is by looking for a card with low fees and one that offers direct deposit.

  • Compare Card Fees: Prepaid cards often get a bad wrap because some of them have extremely high fees. However, there are many cards that best known for having a low fee structure. You just have to compare cards and fine the card that best fits your spending habits. There are plenty of cards with low fees.
  • Direct Deposit: The best prepaid cards offer direct deposit for free. Most cards now offer direct deposit for free, but there was a time when several cards would charge a fee for this. Direct deposit allows you to have your paycheck or government funded check (like your return) automatically deposited to your prepaid account.

How To Get Your Income Tax Refund Via Prepaid Card

Getting your funds deposited to your prepaid card is easy. Your prepaid card comes with an Account # and a Routing #, just like a bank account. To get your refund automatically deposited to your prepaid card you just provided these two pieces of information. To get the routing number and account number, simply contact the company that issued the prepaid card you’ve decided to use. Some even have online tools that can generate the routing number and account number for you. If don’t have a prepaid card yet you can still apply for one and use it to get your refund.

Prepaid cards have been around for several years now, but they have recently become more and more popular. They offer a wide variety of benefits and are ideal for those who can’t qualify for a traditional bank account. Click here to see some of the best prepaid cards available.

Photo Credit: Images_of_Money via Flickr

About Michal Cheney

Michal Cheney is a personal finance blogger who writes for several top personal finance blogs, such as Dough Roller and Go Banking Rates. She enjoys writing about money management, getting out of debt and planning for retirement. Her practical approach encourages folks to get serious about their relationship with their money.