Reader Ellen emailed me an inspiring story this morning.
Hi Julia: In questioning a rogue fee attached to my savings account, I found out that I fell prey to not reading the fine print, a.ka. “terms and conditions apply.” Sure the fee was only $9.00 but in this economy every dollar and cent charged by a bank deserves an explanation. What I found out floored me, though, given the greed of banks it probably shouldn’t have surprised me.Here goes.My account apparently charges $3.00 per withdrawal, up to three withdrawals. That explains the $9.00 fee. And yes, the nice customer service rep, explained that this was indeed embedded in the fine print, tha (insert sarcasm here) everyone has time to read with a fine-tooth comb.But it gets better. If you go over three withdrawals, the bank automatically converts your account to a checking!!! So much for the new banking rules.Not wanting to take out my disdain on an employee just trying to do her job (and avoid her own banking fees), I simply expressed to her that the policy seemed punitive, especially given the economy. Here we are not wanting to go in to our savings, trying to avoid using credit cards, and are penalized for trying to be good financial stewards.She agreed with me, said she hopes the bank will change this policy, and refunded me my bogus fees. I don’t consider the refund as much of a victory. I’d just like to see the policy changed.
What a story! I’m so glad you called and empowered yourself to find out more about your account and express your disapproval. I’m going to share this on the blog so others can be inspired, too. Thanks for sharing!Got a success story? Email me. Problems, failures, and dilemmas welcome, too!