Wednesday, April 24, 2013

4.24.13 Bee-otch of the Day: Fifth Third Bank

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Name: Fifth Third Bank
Age: 154
Occupation: regional bank
Last Seen: Cincinnati
Bee-otched For: losing me as a customer

Three weeks ago marked the end of an era for me.

All my life, I only had one bank, or two if you count the fact that they merged with a bigger bank. That bank was the current Fifth Third Bank, or Old Kent when I opened my savings account with them when I was a little boy. Since they merged, my satisfaction with them has dwindled a lot. I noticed that my interest on my savings has gone way down, plus the fact that now, you have to have $500 to avoid a $5 per month fee (it used to be $100).

But what made things worse is that a few months ago, they decided to re-do their options for checking accounts. Now, if you still wanted to write checks, you had to have at least $1,500 in checking. I know, in this age of paying bills online, writing checks is so passe, but I still do it in some instances. But since I don't have $1,500 in the bank, it's an $11 monthly charge.

So, since I had Easter week off, I decided to do something I should have done years ago: joined a Credit Union. I already have an account with them through my employer, plus both branches of Fifth Third and the CU were close by, so everything was easy breezy.

Thankfully, when I canceled my accounts with Fifth Third, they didn't haggle me, which is nice. Also, I've noticed that other banks are trying to make you join them with $100 bonuses. Yeah, like I want to lose that with bank fees.

When the economy collapsed in 2008, Michael Moore said it best: join a Credit Union. Bank CEOs stole our money and they're stealing more of it. Sadly, Fifth Third - although smaller than Citi or Chase - is just another bank. It's sad that I've done business with them for over 20 years, but no longer.

But the good news is that maybe, just maybe, I'll have $1,500 with the interest I've earned. :)

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