You’re 24 hours away from having your utilities cut off. Or, maybe you’re a college student and there’s not enough in the change jar for Ramen noodles. Most of us have experienced money shortfalls, but sometimes the need is critical. Fortunately, having someone wire money directly to your bank is easy and fast enough to call off most of the financial wolves. In most cases, you can get your hands on the wired funds in one day.
TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
In most cases, it takes 24-hours or less to for wired funds to show up in your bank account.
Understanding Bank Wires
If the person sending you money wires it directly to your bank, you can rest easy: This method is safe, easy, and fast. Many banks use the Fedwire Funds Service System, which by law makes the money available that day or the next business day. Another network, the Clearing House Interbank Payments System, doesn't make the money available immediately, but does promise it'll be there the next business day.
Online Bank Transfers
Many banks have online transfer options that allow your generous friends or family members to transfer money to your bank account. It's possible even if you live in another state. These transfers can take two to three days. If you bank at the same bank, the money may show up in your account within 24 hours.
Other Transfer Systems
Anyone can use a private business, such as Western Union, to send money directly to your bank account, but you won't get it for two to five business days. If it's a same-day emergency, pick it up from a company branch. You'll need the transaction identification number from the sender. You'll also need to show a government-issued ID, such as a passport or driver's license, or an alien ID. You can also get it delivered to your home the next day if you can't pick it up in person.
Fees for a Wire Transfer
Sending money is rarely free, and in some cases, neither is receiving it. Generally speaking, the faster you need the money, the more it will cost. Banks charge to send a wire unless it's a service attached to the account. To add insult to injury, some banks also charge the person receiving the wire. Your state might regulate these fees, but the federal government does not. A private business like Western Union bases fees on origination point, the amount sent, and the type of service.
- Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation: FDIC Law, Regulations, Related Acts
- Federal Reserve Bank of New York: Fedwire and National Settlement Services
- HGExperts.com: Banking Industry Standards and Practices for Funds Wire Transfers by Fed Wire, CHIPS, SWIFT, ACH, and EFT
- Comptroller of the Currency Administrator of National Banks: Answers about Wire Transfers
- Smart Asset: How Long Does a Wire Transfer Take?
Based in Central Texas, Karen S. Johnson is a marketing professional with more than 30 years' experience and specializes in business and equestrian topics. Her articles have appeared in several trade and business publications such as the Houston Chronicle. Johnson also co-authored a series of communications publications for the U.S. Agency for International Development. She holds a Bachelor of Science in speech from UT-Austin.