This section is from the "Practical Banking" book, by Albert S. Bolles.
All the documents, except the application and abstract, are kept in a single envelope, headed with the number of the loan, and they retain this number so long as they are the property of the bank. The application is filed as a cash voucher, and the abstracts, which are somewhat bulky, are kept in a separate series. Semi-annually, on the first days of May and November, it is the duty of the treasurer to collect from the mortgagors the interest on their mortgages. He sends to each mortgagor, about twenty days previous to those dates, a statement of the amount of interest due, the computations for which are made and verified by the secretary. This statement is so arranged as to constitute, when signed and returned by the mortgagor, a letter of transmission accompanying the payment to the treasurer. These statements are required to be signed, even when the party pays in person, as evidence of the correctness of the amount paid. In return, the treasurer gives a receipt. In the majority of cases the payment of interest on mortgages is made by check on some bank in favor of the institution. If it is made in money, a statement is handed with the money to one of the tellers, who receipts therefor by writing his initials after the words "Received by," and returns the statement. (See form, page 180.)
The secretary debits the teller and credits the treasurer. It is the theory of the bank that every document representing the payment of money in either direction should be doubly signed, by the party or bank official giving, and also by the one receiving it.
Interest on loans, it might have been stated, is collected in a precisely similar manner. If a mortgage becomes in default of interest or principal, it is the duty of the treasurer, after applying all other means, to place the mortgage in the hands of the attorney for foreclosure, and upon the conclusion of the action, to collect and account for the proceeds. He also receives money in partial payment of mortgages, usually where the same are overdue, and running by mutual consent. In this case, he requires a statement of the general form, and gives a receipt.
Besides these classes of regular current investments, the bank may, in certain cases, invest in real estate. These cases are the following:
1st. A building for its own use; but, as it would be unprofitable to confine the building to the single story required for bank use, it is allowed to add portions thereto for the purpose of deriving revenue from renting. 2d. Where mortgages are foreclosed, it is frequently necessary for the bank to bid at the sale in order to protect itself, and in this manner it may become the buyer. When the fee of a piece of real estate has been thus acquired by the institution, it then becomes the duty of the treasurer to act as the bank's agent in managing the property, to sell it whenever that can advantageously be done, and to derive the best possible revenue from it, so long as it is held. The collection of rents, both from the rented portions of the bank's premises, and from foreclosed real estate, is effected in a manner analogous to the collection of interest. A statement is sent out as a notice, returned as a voucher, and exchanged for a receipt. As to the sale of real estate held by the bank, the board usually instructs the treasurer as to a limit, above which he is authorized to dispose of it. When a bargain is made, he and the purchaser sign in duplicate a contract of sale, and the amount paid in hand at the signing of this contract is considered as a liability, and credited to the account "contracts of sale."
The expenditures of the institution are under the supervision of the treasurer. In every case, whether the payment be as an investment, or as the expense of managing any of its departments, he takes from the payee a voucher, and if the actual payment is made by a teller, it is countersigned by the latter. (See form below.)
Form of Voucher.
For Payment by the UNION SAVINGS BANK, of New York, to
I Certify that the above mentioned ha been as stated.
Approved for Payment,
Paid in Money, ...............Teller.
from the UNION SAVINGS
in full payment, as above stated.
Examined by Auditing Comm'ttee,