Taylor Kirk says she joined a credit union because she couldn't afford to open an account at a major bank. Taylor Kirk "The fees were really outrageous for me, and the amount that I had to put in was too much." And Consumer Reports finds bank fees are showing no signs of letting up. The majority of banks now charge a fee for non-interest checking accounts. Two years ago, most of those accounts were free. Overdraft charges and ATM fees are also at record highs." And banks are adding other fees. For example, Bank of America now charges e-bank customers 8.95 a month to use a teller. P-N-C and U-S Bank charge 25 dollars to close an account open less than six months.
Kim Kleman, "You can fight back. If you're hit with a fee, ask your bank to waive it. If that doesn't work, threaten to move your account." If you decide to make a move, consider a big credit union. Fees for basic checking at major credit unions are 42 percent lower on average than at big banks. Kim Kleman, "Credit unions used to just serve small groups, but that's changed. Now it's pretty easy to find one you can join." Before changing banks, check to see if your bank charges a closing fee. Make sure all outstanding checks are paid, and switch over automatic deposits and bill payments. Taylor Kirk "Hello." Taylor Kirk's happy she chose a credit union. Taylor Kirk "The locations aren't as plentiful as with a big bank, but honestly, it's worth it."