Key Bank and the oh so expensive Paper Statement.
I've been a Key Bank "customer" most of my adult life. Truth be told, the account I had there was not my primary checking account, but rather my extra account I used for specific purchases related to my job. While making one such purchase one night, I checked my last statement to see what my balance was. I don't use the account very often, so that was a normal practice. To my surprise, I noticed that there was a $2.00 fee taken from account for sending me a Paper Statement in the mail. EXCUSE ME? Two dollars to send me a piece of paper in the mail? I don't think so. I started going through my previous statements, and sure enough there were fees going all the way back to September, in all about 12 or 14 dollars worth.
The next morning, I took the statement to the local branch, wanting answers and a solution. I was calm and collected, but inside I was fuming. The teller couldn't help me, so I had to wait for the manager....for an hour. I explained my frustration when I was finally acknowledged. My frustration and dissatisfaction was met with "Well sir, it is Key Bank's policy that customers are responsible for looking at their statements. They ARE providing you with a service after all. That service costs money, and like it or not sir, all banks are instituting these fees."
Jerry Springer was talking me down in my head. Remaining as calm as I could, I cracked a smile and politely said, "You've got to be kidding me. Ma'am, that's ridiculous. I signed up for a free checking account for a reason. I understand that it's not you, at this level (the branch), and that this decision comes from the top of the company, but where's the loyalty? It's not the amount of money, it's the principle of the situation. I'd appreciate you refunding my money and cashing out my account."
She replied with "Since you're closing your account, I'm not authorized to refund you more than one fee. If you were to choose our online option and keep the account open, I could refund all of them."
"Nope. No thank you. Give me my money and close the account." By this time I was starting to become visibly perturbed. Her keen senses picking up on this, she said, "Well, I can manually credit up to 60 days worth of fees, so I can give you an extra 2.00 fee back."
Whatever. Just get it done.
As she was running the transaction, she messed something up with the computer, to my advantage, giving me another extra 2.00 back, but forcing me to digitally sign for money twice. Her response to this was "hey, at least there's no paper or ink to keep track of." I was so put off that all I could do was chuckle. I said "Yep, and now you understand why I didn't want to rely solely on your online option. Thanks a lot."
After doing some research around my local area, I found that the local credit union doesn't charge people for any of that stuff. No hidden fees, no minimum checking balance and absolutely no plans to do so at any point in the future. All I have to do is use the account once a year and keep at least five dollars in a connected savings account. No problem. Moral of the story: Banks suck. Go local. Use your credit union.