Friday, September 21, 2007

I Was Mistaken to Trust Bank of America

Right now I am extremely frustrated with Bank of America. I decided to open their Defenders of Wildlife savings account as detailed at Hustler Money Blog last week. On last Friday I called and got the details. I was told that in order to open a joint account, my husband would need to be on the phone with me.

So on Saturday we called in. It took about 30 minutes. We closed our other Bank of America savings account and we were assured that our account would be opened shortly.

I log into online banking quite frequently and I saw that my other savings account was closed (probably on Tuesday), but the new one was not open. I happened to go into the branch yesterday, on Thursday since I had a check to deposit. While I was there, I decided to check on my new account. A personal banker agreed to call me back once she checked on it. I just got the call and found out:

1. the Defenders of Wildlife savings account was never opened
2. the Defenders of Wildlife savings rate declined (not a big surprise, but it declined much more than the fed rate)
3. the personal banker couldn’t even open up the account for me with the interest rate listed online (she told me this was because the rates online were national averages, I think better rates are available online than in the branches)
I had switched $10K from my ING Direct savings account to my linked Bank of America checking account in anticipation of this move. That’s about $10 in lost interest for me. On $10,000 with 4.3% interest, I make $8.26. Since this debacle is going to cost me a little more than a week’s interest, I’m rounding to about $10 of lost interest.

Here’s my calculation of how much interest I would be making:
($10,000*4.3%)/52 weeks = $8.26
These troubles with Bank of America’s customer service have led me to decide to take most of my business elsewhere. I am going to open ING Direct’s Electric Orange Checking Account (email me if you’re not a customer of theirs and want a referral) and move 95% of my checking account to ING Direct. I'm going to keep a $50 direct deposit going into my Bank of America account in order to keep on using their ATMS and avoid the $3 outside ATM fee.

I am also shopping around for a new savings account. For now I’ve moved my money back to ING Direct. As BostonGal noted, they are no longer the leader in the rates, but they do have signup bonuses, an easy interface, and great customer experience.


Anonymous said...

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