CITY OF INDUSTRY, CALIFORNIA -- I was offered a credit card in 2008 with a $300 limit through Orchard Bank (HSBC Services). Big mistake! I really needed this money as my mother had kidney cancer and had to have surgery to remove one kidney and I wanted to be there and take care of her afterwards, so I opted to accept the card thinking it would help me out for the time I was with her. I paid on this card faithfully every month and only charged about $250 on the card.
Then in May 2008, my husband had a heart attack and he was off work for some time and I was the sole bread winner. I called Orchard Bank and explained the circumstances and said I could not make the monthly payments as schedule but would send what I could at a different date each month but when the bills started piling up and groceries needed to be bought, I could not pay anything and called them again. They told me they would waive the late fee if I sent in $75. I did and they did waive the fee but then they added fees to the next few months I could not pay, which I thought they were waiving fees until I could get back on track and my husband got back to work.
Now I owe over $900 and it is in collection. They will settle for around $750. I only charged $250 and told them I cannot pay that. I feel I was deceived and scammed into getting this card. Many people have been in this situation and it is very unfortunate that we have to be treated like this and used. Do not ever take Orchard Bank (HSBC Services) up on any credit card offers, as the late fees and interest are extremely high and you will never get it paid off. I was stupid and fell for this.
I think this call made on today (February 13th 2008) is my 5th time to call Orchard Bank to mail out the cancellation confirmation letter as well as the deposit check since I cancelled my credit card on January 2008. After over one month, I still have not received my deposit check since they claimed I would receive it in one month. But this time, this 5th representative told me I will receive the deposit check in 2 months. Did they change their policy on sending out customers deposit checks in just two weeks? I am very curious.
I applied this credit card over 27 months ago because my credit score was low. I also had to deposit $1500 as secured fund to get their secured credit card. They initially claimed I can get my deposit back after 18 months. After that 18 months, I ever called them about my deposit. They told me I can not get my deposit back, but they will consider my request once they think my credit is good enough,something like that. Did that mean that they will hold my deposit for 5 year or even forever because it is their decision on if I can get my deposit back. Although my credit score has increased dramatically since then (not because of Orchard Bank credit card), but my deposit was still FIRMLY HELD by them.
After I applied Orchard Bank credit card for low credit customers, I ever applied Citi credit card and Bank of America credit card. Both banks are very good. Citibank hold my deposit for 18 months and they sent me my deposit after 18 months. They also increased my credit limit to $2500 without my request. Bank of America returned my $1500 deposit on time after 6 months.
Personally, I suggest you can try those two banks if you are considering to have a bad credit or low credit card. My typing speed is very slow, but today I must spend some time and write some something about my real story. If my story can help others avoid further problems, I will feel a little better.
SALINAS, CALIFORNIA -- Please don't pay your Orchard Bank credit card by using their online bank payment. They hold your payment for 14 days even though they've deducted your payment from your checking account. Not one service agent has given me an acceptable answer to why Orchard holds the payment "hostage" for so long. The payment amount is gone from my bank, but "on hold" with Orchard Bank. It's in the small print so beware! They cop-out by telling their customers to refer to the "agreement". I'm sure it's written into the small print, but that still doesn't answer the question as to WHY. Pay your account by phone using your debit card instead.
CITY OF INDUSTRY, CALIFORNIA -- This bank raised my APR to 29.46%, stating that I was late on a payment. A review of my payment history, with the company representative, showed that all of my payments have been early, in fact some of them have been over 30 days early. There is the problem, if you make two separate payments within a payment cycle they consider both as payment for that cycle, even though you intended that the second payment was for the next cycle, (over 30 days early). The bank will not budge on this saying that even though they have received a payment every month, two of them were received in the same cycle, that the next payment was late.
This company had a customer who made every effort to make his payments early - how do they treat the ones who do make late payments? The moral of the story is do not make a payment until you receive your statement because even if your intent was to pay over 30 days early, in their eyes, you are late and refuse to make it right for a good customer.
I have two credit cards with Orchard Bank one has a 5000 and one 6050. I have their premium platinum cards and 2 percent cash-back on each. They have been nothing but good to me, I keep getting an increase bout every six months and I have no annual fee. I can't ever complain about them they have been nothing but good to me. I would recommend this bank to anyone. I started these limits both and worked my way up over the last year or so I just basically paid the balances off pretty much every month. I would give the thumbs up to this bank, they are great.
CATSKILL, NEW YORK -- I became a customer of Orchard Bank in Feb of 2008. I kept my activity on my card to a medium to high level. I was a secured account of $300 so I was operating on my own money. September 3rd I called Orchard Bank and asked how to add money to my secured account. They gave me the information and the address and company name where to mail my additional deposit to. I followed the instructions and mailed additional funds to Intermountain Bank with my account information.
One month went by and no increase to my account. I contacted Orchard and they told me the funds had been applied to my bill. They took over 2 months to fix the error. I was told that I did not mail it to the correct address and company. Upon receiving my cancelled check, it showed the check was made out to Intermountain Bank but Orchard Bank decided to cash my check that was not theirs. I spent many many hours on the phone with them and never made any headway. I also joined their account protection plan to protect my account in case of emergency.
Last month my account was overdrawn by $4.00 because of the account protection plan. The month before that I received a pre-approved card packet. I gave the information over the phone to a representative and she told me I would receive my card with a minimum credit limit of $300 and a max of $2.500. The following week I received a credit alert from my credit counseling company telling me that Orchard Bank flagged me for going over my credit limit and added another credit inquire on my report.
They informed me that I was denied the card that they had already approved because of a recent report on my credit. The report was from them... So instead of helping me to build my credit, they used my money (secured card) to even lower my credit score. Thank you Orchard Bank for all the trouble and time wasted on your company.
I received my deposit check from Intermountain Community Bank which is the bank for the Orchard Bank credit card. Before I received this check, I called Orchard Bank's 503 phone number about 10 times. What I learned is that you should dial their 1800 number instead of 503 phone number. I guess that their employees in India or other foreign countries picked up the 503 phone calls. But the 1800 phone calls are picked in USA.
Some lessons: Be very patient if you have Orchard Bank credit card and you plan to get your deposit back. They claim you will get your deposit check in 2 months. But you still have to give them call because after 2 months you will still probably don't get your check. If possible, go to Citibank or Bank of America and apply for their secured credit card or unsecured credit card. These banks are 1000% better than Orchard Bank.
It seems like that it is nearly impossible to make a secured credit card into unsecured even I make payment very promptly and I keep my balance low. After 26 months, my credit card is still secured. When I request that they change the status to unsecured, their reply was that they will research the issue and made their decision in proper time. My credit has increased dramatically in two years and several banks give me $2000 unsecured credit. But never dream of getting a unsecured credit card from Orchard Bank.
Dial 1800 phone number on bank of your credit card instead of 503 phone number because their overseas employees simply don't solve problems and maybe even make problems worse. That is really a waste of time and the employee's time. In my experience, Orchard Bank credit card and Capital One credit card are the worst credit card. Try to avoid these two credit cards and don't fall trap by their advertising tricks.
SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA -- They incorrectly charged me for interest, even after I paid my balance in full and on-time. I have talked to 4 different people in Spanish, English and 1 "supervisor" and nothing...like talking to "Peggy" (the commercial). I also wrote an email to customer service without any response. Frustrating! PLEASE, be kind to yourself and save yourself unnecessary pain, DO NOT GET THIS CREDIT CARD.
NORCROSS, GEORGIA -- I made a copy of the online transaction when the payment was made. It was 6 days ago now and what they do is apply your payment but hold it as a charge. I thought with electronic banking they're now in two days. I worry of the late charges but haven't seen any yet. Will watch this closely. I do make a habit of paying mine in full - to me is bad business - but I guess they don't appreciate us as customers. Just know we need them to build credit. Also, their customer service is mostly overseas.
LAWRENCEVILLE, GEORGIA -- We have been active account holders with Orchard Bank, for 3 months and are very happy thus far. Our brother-in-law referred us to Orchard Bank, as we were looking to rebuild our credit. He too is also very pleased with Orchard Bank and how it has helped rebuild his credit.
We pay our cards off in full before the due date, each month and don't have any problems making the payment. We have never had any issues with payments made or payments never posting. With paying our balance in full each month, we have yet to be charged interest on our cards. We have already received a CL increase.
This card is only for those who are honestly looking to rebuild or establish credit. You do pay an annual fee, depending on your credit will determine how much, but most cards you find these days, you will pay a fee. The more you pay on time, the more you will be rewarded from Orchard Bank and you will also find a positive account on your credit reports.