Beware that if you have online banking, the balance may not be accurate. I have yet to have it explained to me clearly but lately, in the PM the night before, I had a plus balance and the pending items were some transformed into NSF, despite an incoming automatic deposit.
I was just told "keep better records" and I am becoming increasingly aware that the online balance is only approximate (and computerized banking practices seem to have changed in favor of the bank and getting fees) so I will be much more careful in the future!
I've seen my balance inaccurate also. However my balance is sometimes off by an amount that does not equal any of the outstanding transactions I have, or a sum equal to any of them. Nobody seems to be able to give me any answers either.
I bank only at credit unions now. I've been a member of Whatcom Educational Credit Union since I graduated from college 10 years ago. They pretty much only charge for overdrafts, $13.00 per check that bounces. I've even had them back out overdrafts if I deposited money to cover it later that day. Compare that to the $35.00 that Bank of America was charging me before I closed that account. Three charges were overdrawn and THEN the automatic deposit went through, as if they were watching for the opportunity.
Because I needed a local bank, I joined First Tech Credit Union, low interest rates, no excessive fees and they offer a free coin counter in their lobby. Oh, and both allow online banking and they are super accurate. I can see that my husband got a coffee on the way to work right after it happens. I'll never go back to regular banking again!
Jess in Portland
I found it depended on how stringently the bank interprets 'time'. Such as was the money adequate at the exact second and if more than one thing hits then they prioritize by date or auto debit etc. I'd had them print it out and argue but they read time differently, sometimes.
After much frustration and losses I moved to a more friendly and flexible bank and have had no more problems.
I have been experiencing the same problem lately at our bank and we have been really good customers for several years. They changed their whole online banking site and since that time we have had numerous overdrafts even when depositing money in the deposit box at night. When we call to ask why we are being charged they tell us that the checks came in "over night" and that it was before the check(s) we deposited were processed so we get hit with fees. I am increasingly of a mind that they are doing this just so that they can make more money from their customers. We have even been told that when we deposit cash it still takes a day before its available. What is up with that?
Sadly gone are the days of personal bankers and friendly banks. Since they passed the "Check 21" it has been down hill for the average customer.
Checks can be turned around by electronic check, thus going in faster than you anticipated, and the checks are withdrawn before the automatic deposits
are credited. This is just one more way to get bounce charges. Not much you can do, except keep your balance above what you have written in checks, and in debits.
We have had numerous problems with our bank with all of the above listed. I had deposited $204 and then paid my phone bill online the same day. The bank decided to take out for my dh's truck payment after he told them to only take it out if it was in there, it wasnt. And they sent my payment back to the phone company. This is just the most recent. Seems like every week they are doing us bad, we get ahead and they do it again. I am so frustrated with this bank, but dh doesnt want to change banks. I am tired of getting overdraft fees, i feel like we are paying their salary. We need our money more than they do. I have also seen where they will take money out for a transaction, then put the money back in, as if the transaction never happened. Sorry this is so long.
I have been banking on line for over 5 years and have only one problem. I called the bank and it was taken care of immediately and they called back to make sure, I was satisfied. For me, I love it and wouldn't be without it. I guess each bank is different.
I agree whole heartedly that online banking can be messed up, especially with Bank of America. Jess in Portland hit the nail right on the head about this bank, because I think they do just wait for the right time to charge OD fees. I can put money in the night deposit & it show as a deposit in the online banking, but because the funds had not been verified by the bank tellers inside yet, it's as if the deposit doesn't exist and they charged me OD fees for the items that cleared. You can write a check to the same place 2 different times & one will clear in 2 days and the other will not clear for a week. What's the deal with this?
Have a nice day everyone!
Your checks were scheduled clear that night. Even though you had an incoming automatic deposit, you can't draw on that until it clears, like any other deposit. It's called a "Float."
The only way not to get stung I've found is to give the deposit at least a day to get posted. I check online to see if it is under pending, and if so I wait to do my online payments. If I didn't I could have an overdraft. The deposit will say if it is in pending or just show up as credited if in your balance. I love my online account and balance to the penny daily. Once in a while they (Regions) are doing stuff and there is a warning that your balance might not be accurate. Just have to use more care in proceeding because of check 21 and instant payments being deducted.
They told me that it depends upon how the data processor happens to enter the checks and deposits. If they happen to key in the checks that came in on a certain day before they key in the automatic deposit, the checks will be charged NSF $35.00 per check. If they happen to key in the deposit first and then the checks, the checks clear. I told them that was pretty sneaky and it didn't take a rocket scientist to figure out which ones they were going to encourage their data entry clerks key in first considering that one way they made $35.00 exta bucks.
The only solution is to be aware that the deposit has to go in one day before the check is presented for payment.
I have also found that anything we do on friday or over the weekend gets posted right away but it has mondays date on it and like today is monday, my hubby bought gas using card. it is posted for tomorrow!
There are personal, friendly banks around--you just have to look for them. Find the smaller ones, rather than the big names. We moved to Nebraska and opened an account with a bank we frequented way back when I was growing up. They've been a godsend to us, helping us deal with the endless hassles foisted upon us by our former bank, Chase.
Those big banks have to pay for all those expensive TV commercials and air time somehow, you know. Every time you see one of their ads, enjoy it--after all, you paid for it....
For all the reasons people have posted and the fact that my bank is only a mile away I wouldn't do on line banking on a bet.
I have been taken by the current bank practices. Many hundreds of dollars, about 1,000 from nsf/od fees. It snowballs. How in the world can they charge you all these fees and take them out of your account that day so that the next day it's going to be even worse and more fees... etc.
The banks are sneaky now. They post debits first and then credits. You can no longer go make a deposit to cover a mistake. They will post the debits first and you are a victim of the fees. The only way to protect yourself is to get an overdraft account that will draw from so you won't get charges those awful fees. These banks are all about themselves even when they act like you are the 'customer', 'friend', 'family member'. They ALL want your money the easiest way they can get it. Protect yourself from these vipers.
I wouldn't pay my bills any way other than online and I do not get statements in the mail. It's much safer than paper trails where anyone can get your account numbers and personal info. Granted, the bank takes money out of your account before they pay your creditors but I make sure the money is there and I have a savings account attached to overdraft protection Just in case. I check my accounts every morning and I've never had a problem with my bank. I have friends who have had people get into their checking accounts by stealing inf from paper checks. In this day it's not safe to have any kind of personal information coming in or going out through the mail. It is true that thieves will oftentimes can find a way but I continue to believe online is much safer.
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