Author Topic: bank recommendation needed  (Read 6961 times)

Steve Ainslie

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bank recommendation needed
« on: May 18, 2012, 06:04:56 AM »
I will be relocating to Raleigh NC next week and need a bank recommendation.  Last year I switched to a Credit Union in Florida which I liked for service reasons and anti-big bank sentiments, but there appear to be none convenient to me at my new location for which I qualify (I do not work for the state so cannot join the big CU there).   I am thinking of the following:

1. Suntrust- my new mortgage holder who has thus far been excellent.  They have branches all over the place near my house.

2. Charles Schwab Bank- I read good things about their service. I have some concerns about having no local branch access and about making large deposits.

My needs are simple- Free checking and savings with online banking.  I won't earn any appreciable interest so my primary concern is service, convenience and $0 in fees.  With either bank, I'll have enough deposited to have $0 fees.

If you have any experience with either, I'd like to get your opinion.

reverend

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2012, 06:12:08 AM »
Why not stay with the credit union?  Or take a look at San Francisco Firemen's Credit Union (excellent customer service and they, like many others, reimburse all ATM fees elsewhere, if you're the kind to use ATM cards).

When I left California, I never saw the need to leave the credit union, I just look for a CO-OP branch in my area if I need to deposit checks or pull money out.  Check with a convenient, local credit union and see if they do share branching / if they're part of the Co-op. If they are, and your current CU is too, you're good.


igthebold

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2012, 07:22:29 AM »
I just started consolidating my personal banking on ING Direct, actually. Real convenient, now that they have take-a-picture-of-your-check for deposits.

I've been a happy member of Coastal Federal Credit Union for years, but have since moved too far from their branches.

I use Suntrust for business checking, but the fact that they have branches has been nearly meaningless to me, aside from the opportunity to deposit checks. There's no meaningful relationship between customer and bank that will benefit you. However, Suntrust hasn't been bad to me either, for what it's worth.

Nancy

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2012, 07:56:26 AM »
I absolutely love my Charles Schwab bank account. I joined Schwab because I was tired of paying ATM fees (they rebate all fees at the end of the month). Also, I did not want to pay international transaction fees. Schwab has free checks, and they provide postage paid envelopes to mail checks for deposit. There is also free online bill pay and you earn a tiny amount of interest on your checking account balance. The customer service is excellent, and I've never had a problem with my account. If you deal with a lot of cash that you would want to deposit, the account would be far less convenient.

jpo

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2012, 11:30:41 AM »
I use PNC and haven't had any horrific experiences yet. PNC just acquired RBC's US business and all the branches in Raleigh are now open as PNC branches. I have never been charged a fee. The online banking is fairly simple (note I do not have their "virtual wallet" accounts).

cosmie

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2012, 11:46:42 AM »
I enjoy ING Direct for bill pay, mostly due to their Overdraft Line of Credit. Rather than be charged an overdraft fee, any negative balance (as in you overdrew your account) is simply charged an interest rate of 11.25%. Most of my bills are set to automatically deduct from this account, so if I misjudge my bills and don't have enough in the account, they all still go through and I get an alert about it.

Otherwise, I've stopped using them. Transfers initiated through them (either deposits or withdrawals) take so long. There's also one company that I receive checks from that are always addressed to my first and middle name rather than first and last. And, despite having my full name and ID on file showing the first and middle name, they reject the checks. So I started cashing checks with Ally, and absolutely love them. Checks are simple to cash, all transfers are 2nd business day (vs. the 4-6 that usually took for ING), and they refund ATM fees, no downside at all so far.

AJ

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2012, 01:43:14 PM »
I enjoy ING Direct for bill pay, mostly due to their Overdraft Line of Credit.

Don't almost all banks/CUs have this by now?

2. Charles Schwab Bank- I read good things about their service. I have some concerns about having no local branch access and about making large deposits.

I don't know if Charles Schwab offers it, but the online bank I use (PerkStreet) lets you deposit cash at any MoneyGram location (which, where I live, is grocery stores). If your large deposits are in check rather than cash, a number of online banks have the ability to take a picture of your check and deposit that way (ING, for one).

Personally, I use ING for my savings accounts and Perkstreet for my checking. I don't like having them separate, but I do like a lot of the features each one offers (MoneyGram deposits specifically). ING consistantly has good* rates on savings, and I got tired of rate-chasing so I just stick with them. YMMV.

* if any savings rates can be called "good" these days

cosmie

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2012, 01:54:05 PM »
I've used two traditional banks, two credit unions, and two online banks within the past few years. All of them had a fee assessed each day the account was overdrawn (usually something like $30 the first day, $20 subsequent days), or else they assessed an overdraft fee once when the account is overdrawn, then a percentage of the overdrawn balance until it's positive again. ING is the only one I've had that only assessed a percentage, without charging some sort of hefty overdraft fee.*

Is it not common practice to do this?

*I've only overdrawn my account once outside of ING, and that was by $0.50 and I was assessed over $100 in overdraft fees before I noticed. The rest of my knowledge was from paying close attention to the overdraft terms after this incident.

AJ

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2012, 02:15:57 PM »
RE cosmie:

Yes, all banks will asses NSFs if you don't have overdraft protection, but I've banked with almost a dozen banks/CUs in the last decade and all but one* offered some sort of overdraft protection LOC just like ING. You have to apply for it (since it is an LOC) but it was available and functions the same way as INGs. Wells Fargo actually linked to my credit card, which I don't prefer, but the rest were specifically overdraft LOCs.

*Ironically, the only one that doesn't offer it is my current bank :(

Edit: ING isn't assessing a percentage as an overdraft fee, they are drawing on your line of credit then charging you interest on the LOC. I guess it probably feels like they are assessing a percentage-based fee, but it is not technically how it is structured. Sorry to be nitpicky, I'm weird about technicalities...
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 02:18:19 PM by AJ »

Steve Ainslie

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Re: bank recommendation needed
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2012, 12:38:29 PM »
I decided to go with Schwab and will post later in a few months with how they do.  I figure any bank can do OK.  Shwab has live people answer the phone which is a plus.