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(Boston.com)   Banks are charging you a fee not to have an account with them   (boston.com) divider line 54
    More: PSA, Pew Charitable Trusts, consumer finance, checking accounts, savings accounts, PNC Bank, Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, bank charge, profit center  
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6618 clicks; posted to Business » on 09 Feb 2012 at 11:54 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-02-09 09:09:23 AM  
As the article states: this is not a new practice. It's just coming under scrutiny.

Sort of like colleges that conveniently "forget" to discontinue an automatic payment. It's not new, it generates revenue like it's supposed to, but is less than popular with the folks that they hit with them.
 
2012-02-09 09:30:07 AM  
I've always complained when Citizens banks wants to charge me $7 to get my customer's money from them. They wrote me a check, I should be able to get my money from the bank it's drawn on. This is a convenience the bank is providing to THEIR CUSTOMER, not me. It's actually an inconvenience for me. I'd rather have my money right away, not have to wait for checks to clear three separate banking systems. To get charged a fee on top of that is an insult.
 
2012-02-09 09:49:42 AM  
Both PNC and U.S. Bank said the fees are needed to cover the costs of opening a new account.

If by "cover" they mean "blow the hell away".
 
2012-02-09 09:51:17 AM  
Also, I'm actually shocked, shocked that BofA doesn't have a fee like this.

Finally got around to closing my account earlier this week, after noticing two inactivity charges.
 
2012-02-09 10:19:53 AM  

kingoomieiii: Also, I'm actually shocked, shocked that BofA doesn't have a fee like this.

Finally got around to closing my account earlier this week, after noticing two inactivity charges.


I have been fleeing the BofA debacle in Mass, while they were busy merging how many crappy banks together? I quit Fleet exactly because of their fee structure--and their tendency to let checks lie in wait to heap on fees. Seriously, four days once to process a cash deposit. On a weekday. With a cashier. That was it for me.

I don't begrudge folks making a living. Loan me some cash, I don't mind you getting your points to make it worth your while--but let's make the vig something we can handle. Consequentally, I loan YOU some money--and really, that is what is happening in banks, is that all our cash is getting tossed up in the air and traded around a bit--you give ME my points. Not, I have cash, so you siphon it off with fees for services that you just made up to give you a reason to nickle and dime me again.

Went with TD when I hit the Right Coast from Phoenix, and I can't say that I miss CHASE at all. The Canuckistanis do right by me so far...
 
2012-02-09 10:27:57 AM  
If I want to close my bank account, I withdraw every cent and then tell them CLOSE it. I'll be damned if I'd pay them a fee after I decided to close an account.
 
2012-02-09 10:39:21 AM  

kingoomieiii: Finally got around to closing my account earlier this week, after noticing two inactivity charges.


They already got you twice.
 
2012-02-09 10:50:42 AM  
How does that work?

I had one account (an HSA) with a listed 'account closing fee'. I never formally closed it. I just wrote a rollover check for the exact amount. Which went through. Zero balance. Then you get a 'final statement' statement. And that's it. Trust that innate laziness overrides greed. It's a royal pain to cancel your check and demand that you write a check for $15 less than what you have.
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2012-02-09 11:55:22 AM  

nekom: If I want to close my bank account, I withdraw every cent and then tell them CLOSE it. I'll be damned if I'd pay them a fee after I decided to close an account.


No, you be harassed by a collection agency.
 
2012-02-09 12:12:47 PM  
Spirit Airlines charges a $13 deplaning fee.
 
2012-02-09 12:29:32 PM  

Lawnchair: How does that work?

I had one account (an HSA) with a listed 'account closing fee'. I never formally closed it. I just wrote a rollover check for the exact amount. Which went through. Zero balance. Then you get a 'final statement' statement. And that's it. Trust that innate laziness overrides greed. It's a royal pain to cancel your check and demand that you write a check for $15 less than what you have.


The closing fee probably didn't apply. If you read TFA, this is about fees for short-lived accounts. If the account had been open for more than six months it's unlikely the fee was relevant.
 
2012-02-09 12:43:09 PM  

jaylectricity: I've always complained when Citizens banks wants to charge me $7 to get my customer's money from them. They wrote me a check, I should be able to get my money from the bank it's drawn on. This is a convenience the bank is providing to THEIR CUSTOMER, not me. It's actually an inconvenience for me. I'd rather have my money right away, not have to wait for checks to clear three separate banking systems. To get charged a fee on top of that is an insult.


csb
Had a large check written to me once from a less than trust worthy source. I went to the bank it was drawn on to cash it. Since I didn't hold an account there, they didn't want to cash it. Finally had to talk to the teller manager and explained simply that I should be able to cash a check from an account at their bank in well, their bank. It would come back to them anyway, the account had funds to cover it and no stops had been placed. I figured they just want to a place to charge it back to if for some reason the check has to go back. Doing in person, there is no way to that. One thing that banks hate to do is to get caught holding the bag. If they can pass that down the chain, and hopefully charge a fee for that, they are happier.

Anwyay, they cashed it and I walked away happy.
/csb

TL,DR Banks suck and setup the rules to screw everyone else.
 
2012-02-09 12:43:47 PM  
"I've often said, nothing improves your company like the lack of it. Perhaps you can make some money out of this...10 credits not to be there for an hour, 50 credits not to be there for a day, and to not be there for the rest of your life...well, they could never afford it."
 
2012-02-09 12:44:38 PM  
FTA:are charging customers if they close a checking or savings accountwithin several months of opening it.

There is a part of me that agrees with this, if it's up front explained and that monthly is 3 months or less. There has to be some cost incurred from printing free checks, cards, mailing it, the time you spent with the accounts person to set it up, etc.

If these are fees added to gouge long term customers leaving because they've finally discovered their bank is a POS, then fark them in their shill holes!
 
2012-02-09 12:45:48 PM  

nekom: If I want to close my bank account, I withdraw every cent and then tell them CLOSE it. I'll be damned if I'd pay them a fee after I decided to close an account.


You withdraw down to $0. When you tell them to close it, your account is hit with the "closing fee", your balance goes negative, and remains open while they harass you for the $25 fee to actually close it. And if they're really a bunch of bastards, they'll hit you with an insufficient funds charge for not being able to handle the closing fee when it hit your account.
 
2012-02-09 12:59:18 PM  

rudemix: If these are fees added to gouge long term customers leaving because they've finally discovered their bank is a POS, then fark them in their shill holes!


According to the article, you could be forced to wait for anywhere from 6 months to a year before closing in order to avoid the charge. It doesn't take even three months to discover these banks are pieces of shiat.
 
2012-02-09 01:03:16 PM  

Khellendros: nekom: If I want to close my bank account, I withdraw every cent and then tell them CLOSE it. I'll be damned if I'd pay them a fee after I decided to close an account.

You withdraw down to $0. When you tell them to close it, your account is hit with the "closing fee", your balance goes negative, and remains open while they harass you for the $25 fee to actually close it. And if they're really a bunch of bastards, they'll hit you with an insufficient funds charge for not being able to handle the closing fee when it hit your account.


Oh, and don't forget they'll also send you all sorts of threatening letters about how closing your account in that manner would severely damage your credit history and preclude you form opening an account with any other bank in the future.
 
2012-02-09 01:07:14 PM  

rudemix: FTA:are charging customers if they close a checking or savings account within several months of opening it.

There is a part of me that agrees with this, if it's up front explained and that monthly is 3 months or less.


I would agree, except that you should be able to avoid the fee if you close the account because you discovered something nasty about them after you signed up.

Like, "What? You're a bank? Eeeew~"
 
2012-02-09 01:16:22 PM  
Yet another thread that we're supposed to mention credit unions, right?
 
2012-02-09 01:18:56 PM  

rudemix: There has to be some cost incurred from printing free checks, cards, mailing it, the time you spent with the accounts person to set it up, etc.


But the bank usually charges you for all of that, too. I just paid $22 dollars for about 100 checks, so I'm guessing their profit was roughly $21.90 on that transaction.
 
2012-02-09 01:27:58 PM  

vpb: No, you be harassed by a collection agency.


One certified letter and they'll never call again. Or they will and I'll sue them. I will NEVER pay a cent that I don't owe. A bank tried some horse shiat on me once, never paid them, never will. Not on my credit report, not in Chexsystems. Gotta stand up to BS when you see it.
 
2012-02-09 01:35:55 PM  
FTFA: "Many banks across the country, including several in Massachusetts, are charging customers if they close a checking or savings account within several months of opening it."

I am certainly not pro-bank, but if you close an account "within several months" either you 1) took advantage of some free money/check/short-term rate deal for opening an account or 2) didn't do your homework on what type of account/bank you were doing business with. Maybe your tard ass should pay.
 
2012-02-09 01:37:17 PM  

Nightjars: Yet another thread that we're supposed to mention credit unions, right?


Sure, why not.

CSB:

Opened a few checking accounts at a CU near my hometown. They only really exist as a safety net and to have the ability to easily lend/borrow money to my family back there. Got a call last week from them. Turns out I was 2 days away from an inactivity charge. She offered to shift money between the accounts to bypass any inactivity charges AND offered to help me close them free of charge if that would work better.

So yeah, fark the big banks. CU's treating much nicer.
 
2012-02-09 02:00:06 PM  

jaylectricity: I've always complained when Citizens banks wants to charge me $7 to get my customer's money from them. They wrote me a check, I should be able to get my money from the bank it's drawn on. This is a convenience the bank is providing to THEIR CUSTOMER, not me. It's actually an inconvenience for me. I'd rather have my money right away, not have to wait for checks to clear three separate banking systems. To get charged a fee on top of that is an insult.


It's a strange interpretation of the regulations how this is not negligent dishonor. The story, as I understand it, is that as the recipient of the check you have no standing to claim negligent dishonor and the account holder has waived that right in most modern account agreements so they have no standing. The bank just collects the fee for doing what they're supposed to do anyway.

Personally, if I were regularly faced with this situation, I would pass the fee on to the check writer. In my business, however, all of my clients pay by check but they've got a big problem if their check is no good. And I don't think any of their banks are local to me, save one of them.

Why elimination of this fee was not included in the recent banking regulation overhaul I don't know.
 
2012-02-09 02:02:37 PM  

nekom: vpb: No, you be harassed by a collection agency.

One certified letter and they'll never call again. Or they will and I'll sue them. I will NEVER pay a cent that I don't owe. A bank tried some horse shiat on me once, never paid them, never will. Not on my credit report, not in Chexsystems. Gotta stand up to BS when you see it.


And you've demonstrated the point PERFECTLY. You've now spent more time, money, and energy than it would take to pay the charge. It costs you hours of your time (worth $20 an hour or more), money to contact lawyers (hundreds or thousands of dollars), and gotten yourself all worked into a slobbering frenzy over a $25 fee that was in the fine print of your account to begin with.

You'll do all of that, and you'll still have to pay. The banks know this. They design their policies around this. You think every company that settles in court is guilty? Hell no. They know the costs of fighting. They BUDGET in the costs of settling to avoid dealing with the system. It's smart, prudent, and allows them to save their energy and resources for fights that actually matter.

People should do that too. Save your energy to fight to change the rules, not fight the single instance of the rule screwing you. One is useful and fruitful, the other is not.
 
2012-02-09 02:05:43 PM  
"Both PNC and U.S. Bank said the fees are needed to cover the costs of opening a new account."

Umm, then charge a fee for people opening a new account and if they stay longer than a certain amount of time then refund the fee.

Apparently you don't have to be a rocket scientist, or even have a GED to run a bank.

Also, why the hell are people still putting their money in banks when Credit Unions are so much better and don't usually have all these ridiculous fees?
 
2012-02-09 02:07:32 PM  

Retro42: fark the big banks. CU's treating much nicer.


You own the credit union. They're not going to screw you over, because that would only benefit... you and your fellow depositors. So you'd be screwing yourself over. (NTTAWWT)

(I assume it would be possible to get "two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner" effects, but I haven't heard of such things in practice.)
 
2012-02-09 02:10:51 PM  

Why Would I Read the Article: rudemix: There has to be some cost incurred from printing free checks, cards, mailing it, the time you spent with the accounts person to set it up, etc.

But the bank usually charges you for all of that, too. I just paid $22 dollars for about 100 checks, so I'm guessing their profit was roughly $21.90 on that transaction.


On an initial order of checks for a new account? I'd have said get bent right there. That should always be a gimme. But your profit guess is probably too low too, $21.98 would be my guess.

LouDobbsAwaaaay: rudemix: If these are fees added to gouge long term customers leaving because they've finally discovered their bank is a POS, then fark them in their shill holes!

According to the article, you could be forced to wait for anywhere from 6 months to a year before closing in order to avoid the charge. It doesn't take even three months to discover these banks are pieces of shiat.


Daddy's Big Pink Man-Squirrel: rudemix: FTA:are charging customers if they close a checking or savings account within several months of opening it.

There is a part of me that agrees with this, if it's up front explained and that monthly is 3 months or less.

I would agree, except that you should be able to avoid the fee if you close the account because you discovered something nasty about them after you signed up.

Like, "What? You're a bank? Eeeew~"


Solid points. An opt-out for the bank being a piece of shiat, or farking up funds, payments, etc should be mitigating to close without cost.
 
2012-02-09 02:52:05 PM  
Step 1) Withdraw all but $1 of your account
Step 2) Leave it there to rot, or let them ask for the other $14 as you close it.
 
2012-02-09 03:01:18 PM  

Why Would I Read the Article: rudemix: There has to be some cost incurred from printing free checks, cards, mailing it, the time you spent with the accounts person to set it up, etc.

But the bank usually charges you for all of that, too. I just paid $22 dollars for about 100 checks, so I'm guessing their profit was roughly $21.90 on that transaction.


I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...
 
2012-02-09 03:15:08 PM  
Some fees are worse. My bank tried to charge me a fee for withdrawing money from my own account when I was inside my actual bank. They called it a counter-check fee. I called it bullshiat and closed my account on the spot.

/CSB
 
2012-02-09 03:20:00 PM  

jst3p: I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...


Probably 90% of my checks just have "VOID" written on them and were used to set up deposits or debits. The rest go to people like my pet sitter or gun club. Low volume/overhead businesses that aren't set up for credit cards.
 
2012-02-09 03:22:26 PM  

jst3p: I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...


I still pay my rent with a check. And I pay monthly dues to a bowling league with checks. They still have utility for local transactions where you don't expect someone to be standing there next to a credit/debit card reader. But I received a box of checks when I opened my credit union account, and I would be surprised if I get through all of them in, say, five or six years.
 
2012-02-09 03:36:21 PM  
This fee is to deter people who would open an account in order to receive a premium (they used to give you a toaster, now it's usually cash, in the range of fifty to a couple of hundred bucks) then close the account once they get the payoff. It's existed as long as banks have given premiums. No story.
 
2012-02-09 03:40:28 PM  

Tommy Moo: Step 1) Withdraw all but $1 of your account
Step 2) Leave it there to rot, or let them ask for the other $14 as you close it.


The banks I've used in the past have a minimum balance requirement north of $1K and will charge you a fee if your balance isn't above that amount.

/just sent the letter to BofA asking to close my account today
//sweet, sweet freedom
 
2012-02-09 03:45:00 PM  

Khellendros: You'll do all of that, and you'll still have to pay.


I never did. Never will either. And it wasn't THAT much trouble, I didn't lose any sleep over it, I just took the ball out of their court and put it in mine.
 
2012-02-09 03:51:54 PM  
jst3p

I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...

Because my dentist doesnt take credit cards.

My new HSA has both a checkbook and the debit card, so I really dont need to write checks off my checking account any more.
 
2012-02-09 04:09:57 PM  

jst3p:

I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...


I write two checks a month, both to the same bank. That's right. The bank that has my mortgage and car loan won't accept electronic payments unless you have a checking account with them. So every month I have to mail them two checks from my CU account.
 
2012-02-09 04:24:22 PM  

slykens1: I would pass the fee on to the check writer.


That's what I do now. I usually ask which bank they're drawing the check from before I give them the bill.

jst3p: I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...


Because people don't always have $500-$1000 in cash laying around to pay me. I don't take credit cards.
 
2012-02-09 04:49:41 PM  
is it really so hard to keep a bank account open for 90 days?
 
2012-02-09 04:57:22 PM  
Try cancelling a credit card. They'll treat you like you've threatened suicide and send in a negotiator to talk you out of it.
 
2012-02-09 05:07:06 PM  

Russ1642: Try cancelling a credit card. They'll treat you like you've threatened suicide and send in a negotiator to talk you out of it.


Or DirecTV. It's like negotiating with a trinket vendor in Mexico, except you can't physically walk away.
 
2012-02-09 05:45:52 PM  

jst3p:
I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...


I see a couple of others have offered reasons. Mine is: Both the local power company and the gas company started charging "Convenience Fees" for using a card either in person or over the phone. Same thing for doing a electronic transfer. The only ways to pay without getting hammered with additional charges are in person with cash or mail them a check.

/f-ing farktards increase their rates every chance they get. They are not getting another $5.
//some "convenience"
 
2012-02-09 06:48:54 PM  

Skyd1v: jst3p:
I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...

I see a couple of others have offered reasons. Mine is: Both the local power company and the gas company started charging "Convenience Fees" for using a card either in person or over the phone. Same thing for doing a electronic transfer. The only ways to pay without getting hammered with additional charges are in person with cash or mail them a check.

/f-ing farktards increase their rates every chance they get. They are not getting another $5.
//some "convenience"


Yeah I guess there are still some uses for them. My bank online bill pay will mail a paper check to anyone so that is what I use in most of those cases but I guess that isn't universal yet.
 
2012-02-09 07:05:43 PM  

jst3p: Why Would I Read the Article: rudemix: There has to be some cost incurred from printing free checks, cards, mailing it, the time you spent with the accounts person to set it up, etc.

But the bank usually charges you for all of that, too. I just paid $22 dollars for about 100 checks, so I'm guessing their profit was roughly $21.90 on that transaction.

I don't know why anyone uses a checkbook anymore...


Because I have to pay my rent with a check or a money order, and a check doesn't cost $12. I can use a credit card online, but there's a $30 "convenience" charge. I'm still not sure how that's even legal.
 
2012-02-09 07:18:11 PM  
BOA is installing card swipers at their banks' fire exits to collect emergency expediting fees.
 
2012-02-09 09:23:12 PM  
These farking filth would make a ferengi blush.
 
2012-02-09 11:01:52 PM  

Phil Moskowitz: These farking filth would make a ferengi blush.


No, they're just following the First Rule of Acquisition: "Once you have their money, you never give it back."
 
2012-02-10 01:43:06 AM  
cache.boston.com

Well screw that. I can't wait 180 days. Maybe 6 months but not 180 days
 
2012-02-10 01:50:52 AM  

Nightjars: Yet another thread that we're supposed to mention credit unions, right?


Nope, Sweet Cheeks.

USAA > C.U.'s
 
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