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Crappy Banks

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This post, The Worst Banks in America, on Five Cent Nickel caught my eye since I really dislike my current bank, Chase.  According to the post, the three worst ranking banks are Chase/WaMu, Bank of America, and Citibank.  I am sooooo not surprised.

My husband was a Bank of America customer before we met, but awful customer service motivated him to switch.  I was a member of a credit union but it was too far away to continue being useful.  When we got married, we opened a joint Washington Mutual account.  We were actually very happy WaMu customers…we even found the best mortgage rate from them in 2007 – 5.375%.

Then everything crashed, WaMu became Chase, and we were charged for our mortgage twice.  How exactly would you react if $1800 went missing from your checking account when you were only expecting one $900 charge?  Well, that is probably better than me.  I was ticked.

I promptly called customer service.  I was told that their systems were down but that they’d start the process manually.  A week later I still hadn’t heard anything.  I called again and was told that they were working on it but it could take up to 2 weeks total.

A week after that I called again and was told it could take 2 more weeks.  At that point, I lost all patience and asked to speak to someone with more authority.  After being passed around and put on hold for at least 45 minutes, I finally spoke with someone that told me that the review department had agreed to speed things up but it was impossible to actually talk to them.  I was completely frustrated and told them that I was writing an official complaint (which I did) and filing a report with the Better Business Bureau (which I also did).

I had a $900 refund about a week later – 22 days after the accidental double charge.  That was about a week before they just took it back for my next payment.  😉

Let’s just sum it up by saying, I’m not a happy Chase customer.  We were looking into other options, but decided it would be simpler to keep them as our brick and mortar bank while shoveling all our money into ING.  The only good thing I can attribute to Chase is their low-hassle ATM’s…but even those have issues sometimes and then you have to wait for the bank to open to get anything done.

Do you have any bad bank stories?

FYI:  I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year.  I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home.  If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!).  Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!
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15 thoughts on “Crappy Banks

  1. Well thank goodness you had enough in your account to cover the extra 900 dollars. I wonder how generous they would have been if checks had bounced- would they have also covered all your extra charges and such?

    Comerica is my most hated bank. They charge you for every little service, and I don’t think they care about the ‘little person’ at all. I much prefer my little credit union.

  2. Everyday Tips, they swore they’d cover any charges that happened due to this error, but luckily I didn’t have to test the voracity of that claim since I keep $1000 padding in our checking accounts. I don’t want to imagine how much of a hassle it would have been if I had to get overdraft refunds…

  3. Yeah I would have hit overdrafts if that happened to me. I keep just enough + a little more, not much, in my checking. Its good you had the money to cover it.

    I hate Wachovia. You will probably hit every major bank in your comments I think 🙂 Mine grief is for $6 but it was the last straw for me. There is always one fee or another for almost everything. This last one was for money management software “connection”. I was charged with a $6 fee for that. The fee in itself is outrageous, but to hit me with it – because I had never used any kind of money management software at that time. I didn’t even understand what the heck quicken was 🙂

    Anyway after fighting for 3 continuous month to call and remove the charge, every time it would take 30-45 mins on phone. The 3rd month, the representative was very rude, saying they are doing this for the “last” time and they won’t be doing this for me in the future, etc. I was really ticked off. What else can I do, I had not even heard of quicken at that time and I am charged for using it. So I did the only thing I could, canceled the account. Best thing I did I suppose.

    Now we have schwab checking. Free ATM, even international, they reimburse the fees charged by other banks too. Free unlimited checks, free bill pay and a 0.50% interest rate (not much but much better than other checking accounts I suppose). The only drawback is we have to mail our checks if we want to deposit it (free postage paid envelopes, but it will take 2-3 days). No one gives us a physical check anymore, so it is ok for us. But I can imagine that being a hassle for someone getting too many checks. Even then I think I would get a free credit union account locally and keep the schwab. Hmmm.. may be they should pay me for advertising lol.

  4. Suba, that Schwab checking account does sound nice! I was thinking of opening an account with a local credit union (First Community) since their rewards checking pays 3.6%, but it would require us to use their debit card 12 times a month and I truly hate debit…I might do it anyway and just fill up with 25 cents of gas 12 times a month or something…I can picture myself making my monthly gas run at 10pm at night…swiping like a crazy woman, lol. 🙂

  5. I was wondering if there would be any hiccups with the integration of WaMu into the Chase system… I’m with Kris’s comment, luckily you had enough funds to cover it!!!

    I had a buddy that had a WaMu credit card, and it was 0% charges on the card until the end of 2008, so starting in 2009 they were suppose to charge him. But they had problems getting the systems synced, so he wasn’t charged anything until June 2009!

    Sounds like quite the nightmare for a while, good job keeping on it until they fix you up!!!

  6. YES! I HATE CHASE! They screwed me over BIG TIME. I wrote a whole post about it. It’s a rather long story, so I won’t get into the specifics, but lets just say, I greatly dislike them!

    It seems like nobody likes the big guys. BAC, Chase, WaMu, they all have really bad reps. It’s a shame they are our only options for many situations…

  7. myfinancialobjectives, I looked around on your site for the post but gave up after a couple of searches. What’s the link?

    Yeah, our lack of options suck…

  8. I like credit unions. I have belonged to 2 over the years, and find that customer service is much better (most of the time, anyway) and fees more reasonable. People just don’t think about them, for whatever reason.

    The story you just shared, by the way, certainly should be classified as horrendous customer service. They clearly didn’t value you as a customer. Seems like you have made the practical decision to stay with them, despite their shennanigans.

  9. Squirrelers, you are too nice. Hubby and I are being lazy, not practical. We could be getting 3.6% in a local credit union’s reward checking account, but I don’t want to use a debit card (especially not 12 times a month). We could simply switch to switch, but we’d have to change our direct deposits and auto transfers to ING. Yep, 99% laziness and 1% practicality, but you are very nice!

  10. Yes, I too was unceremoniously moved from WaMu to Chase. I absolutely LOVED WaMu and would have to say that they were the best banking experience I’ve ever had; and I’ve banked off and on with most of the ‘big ones’.

    All I can say is that everything Chase promised prior to the merger did NOT materialize and from what I understand it was even worse for their employees.

    Unfortunately, as far as banks go, it seems that all are getting to be that way so what is the point in changing?

    I will definately check out ING, thanks for mentioning it!


  11. Citizens Bank (aka Charter One) knew about a banking rule we didn’t that would disqualify us from getting a VA loan. (If the Big Bad Rule is that important so that it would disqualify us, they’d BETTER know about it upfront!). Yet, they happily accepted our fee to process a loan they knew full well would never get approved. I filled out all the forms, did the leg work and sent all these copies to them. All they did was run it through an electronic underwriter, I’m sure. We paid for inspections, an attorney, etc. all for nothing. Despite our low debot to income ratio, great credit, good house appraisal, low house payment, and all other ducks being in a row, they led us on for WEEKS that it was nearly done until a cold email sent late in the day on a Friday that said “Sorry.” They aren’t so sorry they collected thier inflated fee, I’m sure. Steer clear of Citizens Bank (aka Charter One). They are probably going down the tubes and are trying to get fees to raise revenue.

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