Searching For A New Bank
When I wrote about the need to watch out for little fees with your bank, I noted that my bank had incorrectly charged me a non-network ATM fee but that it was reversed.
Today I received my end-of-month statement from my bank and noticed that there was another $1.75 charge on my account for the month of April. As I reviewed my statement, I noticed that there were 4 ATM transactions for the month. One transaction was at a branch location and the other three transactions were at a surcharge-free location near our house.
This afternoon I called our bank to request the fee be reviewed and credited back to my account, as all of the ATM transactions were in their network or at a branch location. The Customer Service Representative informed me that they are no longer a member of the Star Network and any ATM other than a branch location will incur a fee of $1.75 per transaction.
While maybe not in my best interests, I asked why I was only charged one fee if it was supposed to be per non-network transaction. Something doesn’t add up quite right, as I should either have been charged $5.25 or nothing. So where did this change come from?
Time For A New Bank
The CSR informed me that a notice was sent out regarding this change at the beginning of April, although I do not recall seeing this notice and I usually read the fine print in all of the inserts. When I asked why they have changed their policy, I was told that our bank was going to be merging with a new bank and that is why they have changed their policy.
From what I was told, our current bank will be merging with National City Bank but there was not a timetable as to when this was going to take place. The CSR informed me that I had the option to convert my account to their eStatement account and I would then receive four non-network ATM transactions free of charge each month.
While that is better than being charged for each transaction, I told the CSR that I would keep my current account and simply begin evaluating other banks that are more convenient for me. So now I am on the prowl for a new bank and would like to find something with a branch closer to our home. I’ve typically favored the smaller, local banks like we have right now but I might have to consider one of the larger institutions such as Washington Mutual or Citibank.
There is a new National City Bank being built close to our home but I have not had any experience with that bank. That might be an option to just stick with them and take advantage of the closer branch, however it will likely be quite a few months until that new branch is completed.
If any of you have feedback to share on banks that you have been pleased with, or maybe more importantly banks that you have been unhappy with, please let me know. Maybe now is the time to take the plunge and go with Presidential Bank to take advantage of their much more attractive interest rate on checking accounts. Thoughts?