I plan to stay in the U.S. next year. In my country it is common to pay rent and these things by wire transfer (so you transfer the money from your account to the landlord's account online.) Is this also the most common way to do it in the U.S.? What payment options do I have to expect there?

closed as off-topic by mts, gerrit, JoErNanO, CMaster, CGCampbell May 18 '16 at 13:36

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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because I fail to see the exact link to Travel. – JoErNanO May 18 '16 at 10:17
  • Moving to the USA from South Africa, I found the American banking system to be kinda stone-age. The paper check is still king here ... The only thing which comes close to the convenient electronic banking I'm used to is PayPal. – brhans May 18 '16 at 13:03
  • @brhans Your comment is a perfect example of why people fail to realize just how large and varied the US is: no one in my area uses paper checks – CGCampbell May 18 '16 at 13:34
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    @CGCampbell - Maybe you just don't see them. I live in the south-east and bank with a major US bank. For some of my "online" account payments they will still print & mail a paper check to a company I owe instead of doing an electronic transfer. I am also unable to initiate an electronic transfer myself if I wanted to make a personal payment to you using your bank routing code & account number. My wife is British and she also can't understand the apparent 'archaicness' of American banking. If your banking experience is different I'd be genuinely interested to find out who you bank with ... – brhans May 18 '16 at 14:09

To this day many landlords will ask for a check and if you are going to stay for a long time you surely will have an SSN and open a bank account and can provide a check. If not, you can get a money order at post offices, convenience stores, major grocery stores and many banks for $1 to $2. Most people will accept it. Wire transfer doesn't exist for mere mortals.

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    US bank account holders really have no way to send money electronically to other accounts? – Calchas May 18 '16 at 9:19
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    money.stackexchange.com/questions/51730/… . I've rented in the US without a SSN. Was quite a few years ago though and paid by cheque. – Berwyn May 18 '16 at 9:38
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    @Calchas That is correct. US and Canada finance systems are highly retarded, even worse than UK. – gerrit May 18 '16 at 9:40
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    Wow. Doesn't that make the likes of online banking pretty pointless? – CMaster May 18 '16 at 10:08
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    @phoog As the recipient of such bill payments, I can tell you that what actually happens is that the sending bank mails a check! – Michael Hampton May 18 '16 at 16:25

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