Post Content

 

The Boston Globe has a story today outlining some new fees facing Bank of America customers. Generally, the bank is raising minimum balance standards and other requirements that would erase fees, meaning more consumers will be paying a monthly fee.

This is not a new phenomenon in the banking industry. Once upon a time, most bank customers were able to get a bank account with no monthly fees attached. Those days are now fading – if not already gone. According to the Globe, Bank of America’s monthly fees range from $6 to $25 a month.

The good news for consumers in Massachusetts is that there options for low-cost, or even no-fee, accounts.

On the no-fee side of the ledger, state-chartered banks must offer accounts with no fees to anyone 18 or younger and 65 or older. These “18-65″ accounts are some of the best-kept secrets in Massachusetts, and they shouldn’t be, because they offer a great option for teens learning how to manage money or seniors living on a fixed income. We recently did a survey that found banks do a good job with the required disclosure of the accounts’ availability, but there is plenty of opportunity for more education and attention to these accounts.

Many state-chartered banks also offer low-cost banking accounts to all consumers. These low-cost accounts require no more than $25 to open the account, charge a monthly fee of no more than $3, provide at least 15 free withdrawals per month (including at least eight checks), and charge no more than $1 for additional withdrawals. Last October, we launched our “Save Money! Bank on It” campaign with banking and community organizations around the state, encouraging use of these accounts.

 

Getting hit with new fees – no matter the bank – is no consumer’s idea of a good time. But options exist at our great community banks for those who are looking for a better deal on their bank accounts.

Written By:

Recent Posts

HIC—Easy as 1-2-3! Part 3: Guaranty Fund posted on Sep 13

HIC—Easy as 1-2-3!  Part 3: Guaranty Fund

In parts one and two of our “HIC-Easy as 1-2-3!” blog series you learned about the Home Improvement Contractor (HIC) law and how to apply for the Arbitration program. Now we’ll cover the fund that may reimburse a homeowner with an unpaid final judgment against   …Continue Reading HIC—Easy as 1-2-3! Part 3: Guaranty Fund

HIC—Easy as 1-2-3! Part 2: Arbitration posted on Sep 9

HIC—Easy as 1-2-3!  Part 2: Arbitration

After the ink is dry on your home improvement contract and the job is underway, sometimes things don’t go as planned. Thankfully, the Home Improvement Contractor (HIC) law Arbitration program allows homeowners and registered contractors the opportunity to seek a resolution should a dispute arise.   …Continue Reading HIC—Easy as 1-2-3! Part 2: Arbitration

HIC— Easy as 1-2-3! Introduction posted on Aug 30

HIC— Easy as 1-2-3! Introduction

If you are a home improvement contractor or homeowner in Massachusetts, we’ve got you covered with our introductory guide to understanding the Home Improvement Contractor (HIC) programs – from both perspectives, the homeowner’s and contractor’s. This introduction to HIC programs is the first of our   …Continue Reading HIC— Easy as 1-2-3! Introduction