Banks Back Off On Fees
Good news finally from the banking world. Both Bank of America and Chase today announced that they were rolling back some of the most punitive fees on overdrafts in the county.
Bank of America announced that they wouldn’t charge overdraft fees for being overdrawn less than $10, and would offer customers the option of opting out of the program. They also reduced the number of times one could be charged to 4 from 10, and the amount per fee to $25 from $35. And, if you opt out and go over, they just deny the entire thing.
J.P. Morgan Chase, who I just call Chase because that’s what the banks say, won’t charge for overdrafts more than $5. They’re going to reduce the number of times people are charged per day to six.
Here’s my take on these. Nice start, but it doesn’t go far enough for me. My bank and my wife’s credit union give you three days to make good on a balance before you get hit with an overdraft fee, as long as the total is under $100. The fees may be $35 per afterwards, but if you can’t fix your bank account after 3 days I don’t have a problem with the fee. As for number of times, Chase was doing something where people were getting charged twice in a day for the same overdraft; that’s being eliminated as well.
In general, this points out why people need to make sure they know how much money is in their accounts before going out to buy things. Yeah, we’ve all miscalculated something and been overdrawn. Mistakes can happen to the best of us. But don’t let it happen too often; that looks bad on your credit history.