Bank deposits cheat sheet

Found the perfect bank account to store your money? Then now’s a good time to understand all the tips and tricks to efficiently manage the moolah coming in and going out of your account.  

From setting up direct deposits for your salary, registering for online banking and scheduling automatic payments of your household bills so you never miss a deadline, this guide will take you through the ins and outs of bank deposits.      

How long does it take for a bank deposit to reflect in the account balance

Traditionally, making a bank deposit required you to personally visit your local branch and deposit funds into the account over the counter. Now you have a number of other options such as depositing money at an ATM or making online transfers. Here’s a quick look at how soon the money can be accessed depending on how you make the bank deposit:   

At the bank / post office. 

You can easily deposit cash as well as cheques into your bank account by going to the nearest bank branch or post office. While cash deposits into your account should reflect in the available balance immediately, if you’re depositing a cheque it may take 2-5 business days to clear before you can access the funds.

At an ATM. 

Many major Australian banks these days allow you to deposit money into your account 24/7 through an ATM. You can deposit both cash as well as cheques into an ATM. Generally, cash deposits take 1-2 business days to clear, whereas cheque deposits may take between 5 and 7 working days. If your bank is working with Smart ATMs then cash deposits can be available instantly, whereas cheque deposits will clear in the same time as in-branch deposits.  

Online transfers. 

You can easily deposit or transfer money using online banking services. Making online transfers is the fastest way to deposit money into any account. While transfers to and from the same financial institution are instant, if you’re sending money to a different bank or lender, it could take 1-2 business days for the fund to show up in the deposited account.  

Tips for depositing cash or cheques at an ATM

If you receive cheques on a regular basis or have cash payments you need to deposit, it’s likely that an ATM will be the most efficient way to deposit funds into your account. These days many banks charge for over-the-counter deposits so using an ATM will not only be a more convenient option but also a cheaper one. There are a couple of things you’ll need to keep in mind when making a bank deposit via the ATM though, they are:

  • Make sure the notes are not torn or faded so that they are accepted by the machine
  • ATMs only accept Australian dollars and won't accept unrecognised foreign currency
  • Generally ATMs don’t accept coins
  • ATMs will only accept domestic bank cheques
  • Make sure that you’ve removed any foreign objects such as envelopes or paper clips, before inserting the cash or cheques into the ATM slot
  • Once you’re done, don’t forget to keep a receipt for your records

Setting up online deposits

One of the easiest and fastest ways to make bank deposits across different accounts and pay bills is via online banking. Once you’ve opened a bank account, registering for Internet banking is a very simple and quick process. Some banks let you sign up online while some may require you to call the customer care to create a login id and password. Many financial providers also have mobile banking apps so you can process instant money transfers using your smartphone.    

Some of the useful ways to manage your money using online banking are:

Salary deposit. You can get your salary credited to your  account directly so there’s no need for you to go to a bank and deposit the funds yourself. Many bank accounts waive fees for ATMs and account keeping fees when your salary is deposited directly. 

Plan automatic debits. Keeping a track of all the household bills can be tedious and to make sure you don’t miss out on  due dates, you can set up regular bill and rent payments using direct debits or BPAY. Read more about how to make digital deposits in our detailed guide on online accounts.

Make your credit card repayments. One of the most convenient ways to make sure you don’t exceed the interest free period of your credit card is to set up automatic online repayments.  

Transfer money between accounts. Whether you want to transfer money between your everyday bank and savings account or you want to pay a friend, it’s very easy to electronically deposit funds from one account to another online or through a mobile banking app.

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