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Old 08-22-2010, 10:42 AM   #21
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I pay $0 for my US checking account with USAA. Since I earn some interests on my checking account balance, they actually pay me. I pay about 113 euros annually for my European checking account.
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Old 08-22-2010, 11:39 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by LOL! View Post
I was appalled by this statement by Brett Arends in the WSJ:

Ten Money Moves That Will Always Pay Off - WSJ.com

This has got to be totally false. I've always had free banking since 1973 at many different banks over the years. "most people"? "hundreds of dollars a year"?
Perhaps "most people" do not possess your high virtue?

Ha
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Old 08-22-2010, 11:57 AM   #23
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I pay $0 for my US checking account with USAA. Since I earn some interests on my checking account balance, they actually pay me. I pay about 113 euros annually for my European checking account.
Good God! That is insane. Do you really need that account? I have a European checking account and if I pay anything it's maybe 5 Euros per annum.

In Canada I do pay some bank charges, predominantly on my business accounts. I pay very little on personal accounts by keeping the minimum balance most of the time. But the two banks I deal with are very good to me (got great interest rates on a GIC ladder recently) and the chance that these banks will go under is approximately zero.
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Old 08-22-2010, 12:04 PM   #24
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I don't know about "most", but I have seen a fellow well-paid engineer who bounced his checks and paid hundreds in penalties. He blamed his wife for overspending, but of course I did not know nor care to hear the full story.
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Old 08-22-2010, 01:08 PM   #25
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Perhaps "most people" do not possess your high virtue?

Ha
Perhaps, but I think you'd have to be pretty much an idiot or in financial trouble to not find free banking (that's my High Virtue talking). I doubt you would be reading the WSJ as well.

My daughter who just moved out-of-state and who has no job and no income found free checking with no minimum balance in her new location.

What attracts folks to a bank anyways? My impression is location, free checking and free ATMs.
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Old 08-22-2010, 01:28 PM   #26
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I use a large regional bank with a branch across the street from my office for my day-to-day checking. I do not pay a fee for either the account or paper check re-orders. I keep a larger account in a short term bond fund at USAA. I can write checks on this account if they are $250.00 or more. I never use ATM machines as I walk across the street at lunch time whenever I need cash, chat with the tellers, draw out my walking around money in person.
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Old 08-22-2010, 05:40 PM   #27
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zero. though, like TromboneAl, the bank actually pays me several dollars per month for opting out of paper statements and making ACH transactions.
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Old 08-22-2010, 06:34 PM   #28
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No formal fees, even 100 free trades per account with Wells Fargo PMA, but....I bet they make a good bit of money from me somewhere, they are not a charitable organization.
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Old 08-22-2010, 06:36 PM   #29
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.I bet they make a good bit of money from me somewhere, they are not a charitable organization.
Compare to their "savings rates" to their "loan rates" and you may find it.
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Old 08-22-2010, 08:45 PM   #30
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I don't pay a lot in direct fees -- mainly the $2 or $3 fee to access my money from an atm when I am traveling and can't find my bank's atm. This happens maybe once or twice a year.

I think a bigger fee I am paying is the lost interest on the cash in my bank account. I keep a higher balance than I should and when I figure out the lost interest I am somewhat embarassed.
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Old 08-22-2010, 09:12 PM   #31
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I read not too long ago that the no or very low minimum balance/free checking deals were being phased out by banks. Can't find the article though. I keep one free bank account just because they also give me a free safe deposit box. I lost one of the keys and don't want to pay to have it drilled.
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Old 08-23-2010, 10:48 AM   #32
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I'm wondering how some of the newer "online" banks will affect the banking industry. Certain Schwab Bank accounts as well as ALLY will rebate any/all ATM fees to you. That's likely to be attractive to some people.
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Old 08-23-2010, 01:10 PM   #33
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I read not too long ago that the no or very low minimum balance/free checking deals were being phased out by banks.
I read the same thing, but I don't think it will really happen. Also credit cards deals are supposed to be gone as well. In the meantime, I get all kinds of cash-back deals and plenty of free checking offers. I've seen no evidence of the axe about to fall.
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Old 08-23-2010, 01:11 PM   #34
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I'm wondering how some of the newer "online" banks will affect the banking industry. Certain Schwab Bank accounts as well as ALLY will rebate any/all ATM fees to you. That's likely to be attractive to some people.
My experience is that pretty much all banks rebate any/all ATM fees. Nothing new here. If your bank doesn't, then it's a rare breed, so switch.
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Old 08-23-2010, 02:53 PM   #35
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One more thought -- asking this question on this board is probably similar to someone on a MENSA board finding it hard to believe that half the people have an IQ under 100, and then getting a lot of responses from other MENSA members which validate their disbelief because none of them report having an IQ below 100 or even close to it.

The vast majority of people who do this are probably struggling to keep current on minimum monthly payments, not saving money -- let alone enough to consider early retirement. We are obviously far from being a representative sample on a question like this.

Not the MENSA comparison, but I had the same thought none the less...


BTW, way way back when... I worked at a 'small' bank (it was big in the 80s... $15 billion).... and at that time the average bank balance was less than $300... think about that... average balance... means a lot have less than that... so they get hit with the fees etc. to have an account.... why do you think the payday loans and check cashing sites have popped up all over the place... it is cheaper to get your money there than a bank...
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Old 08-23-2010, 03:00 PM   #36
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Perhaps, but I think you'd have to be pretty much an idiot or in financial trouble to not find free banking (that's my High Virtue talking). I doubt you would be reading the WSJ as well.

My daughter who just moved out-of-state and who has no job and no income found free checking with no minimum balance in her new location.

What attracts folks to a bank anyways? My impression is location, free checking and free ATMs.
Your thinking is still out of the norm... On my previous post I mentioned I worked at a bank back when... and I remember this one lady who worked there had a checking account at another bank... now, we were getting FREE accounts being employed... but she CHOSE to have an account with FEES since it was easier for her to exit the freeway, do her banking in the drive through and get back on the freeway (the bank was between the exit and entrance without a light) than walk the few blocks to our main branch... I could never understand it.... I don't think you can either... but there it is...
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Old 08-23-2010, 03:02 PM   #37
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I pay $12 a year ($1/month) for my interest checking account at my credit union. They pay me 0.25-1% interest and require no minimum balance, so I keep almost nothing in the account. What is in there earns me around $1/month in interest on the float, so over the course of a year I may make a slight amount on the checking account.

I have also paid $0.50 for an overdraft fee this year. That was not really my fault due to Penfed auto-drafting my HELOC 2x because I set up the auto draft manually and online. Yet in multiple phone calls regarding payment amounts, next payment due, etc, no one ever mentioned this to me...

So I'm at $12.50 for the last year.

Well worth it for the convenience and customer service offered by the credit union. And I don't feel like messing with all the auto-deductions and auto-drafts I have already set up in order to save $12 a year.

Our credit union doesn't charge atm fees, but if I go to a non-CU atm, I pay their connection fee of $1-3. I paid that a few times while in Argentina.
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Old 08-23-2010, 03:59 PM   #38
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Your thinking is still out of the norm... On my previous post I mentioned I worked at a bank back when... and I remember this one lady who worked there had a checking account at another bank... now, we were getting FREE accounts being employed... but she CHOSE to have an account with FEES since it was easier for her to exit the freeway, do her banking in the drive through and get back on the freeway (the bank was between the exit and entrance without a light) than walk the few blocks to our main branch... I could never understand it.... I don't think you can either... but there it is...
That's a prime example of "location" that I mentioned.
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Old 08-23-2010, 04:50 PM   #39
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zero fees here. I have an $8/mo "allowance" for atm fees but have never exceeded that.

I also have an HSBC checking and savings account in England and have never paid any fees there either.
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Old 08-24-2010, 12:22 AM   #40
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I pay "zero" on average each year. If I was the bank, I would fire me. Don't know how they can keep giving me free checking, free online banking, free everything. The fees must come from overdrafts and credit card fees. By the way, my card if free.
Earlier this year Chase tried to change my free checking account that I've had for 30 years into a "premium" account with a month fee. They said they were eliminating the type of account I have and had determined the premium account was most suited to my lifestyle. (Not sure how they decided that) I immediately said, if you charge me a single monthly fee I'll move to Wells Fargo -- I expected them to ignore it and let me leave but instead they apologized and let me keep my old free account with the same terms.
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