Let me first start off by saying that I pay my bills on time. I make a to-do list every single day and make sure to stay on top of tasks and errands.
Well, last month I took a look at my bank account. I like to periodically look through my bank account for obvious reasons: to make sure purchases are correct, ensure no one else has access to my debit and credit cards, and so on.
I thought everything was cool until I noticed 2 different overdraft charges on my bank account. AT $32.00 EACH!
I quickly realized why these overdrafts happened (my apartment complex took out our rent a week later than usual and I didn't notice, my bank had an annual fee come in that I forgot about, etc).
I have to admit, I was hesitant on asking the bank to waive my overdraft fees. In my mind, I felt like I owed them money for inconveniencing them. Let's be real, though, we all make mistakes and if it's our first time making the mistake, you better believe I'm going to try to get out of it.
Overdrafting basically means you don't have enough money in your checking account to pay for purchases that were being charged to your debit cards.
Yes, you CAN get your overdraft fees waived!
Here is how I negotiated myself out of over $130.00 in overdraft fees:
- Call your bank and let them know of your overdraft fees. At first, they are going to tell you that there's nothing they can do. Don't lose hope!
- Let them know that you have never made this mistake before and tell them you have been a loyal customer to XXXX bank for XXXX years. Trust me, they don't want to lose you. The bank loses money if they lose you as a customer.
- I also went as far as saying that I was going to switch banks if there was nothing they could do to help me. I would use this as a last resort. I only said this because I haven't lived in my bank home state for over 2 years and need to switch banks anyway. Luckily, I'm in a credit union and can bank from pretty much anywhere.
The bank will tell you that you didn't have enough money in your checking account to pay for purchases that were made to your account, therefore the bank had to help out for your convenience.
You will obviously feel at fault, but don't take no for answer (at least at first).
Make it known that you have been a loyal bank customer (in my case, almost 7 years) and that this has never happened to you before. Let them know you have never had an overdraft before and always have enough money to pay for purchases.
The bank employee will look into your bank history and see that you don't have any previous overdraft fees in place. They'll see your clean history of having enough money in your bank account, etc, and talk to their boss to figure out if waiving the overdraft fee is possible.
The bank employee will then tell you that they were able to waive the overdraft fee.
If you had several fees like me that were done all at one time, then they'll waive them all or a couple at the very least.
If they will say no, I would recommend calling again or thinking about switching to another bank.If you tend to be a pushover type (like me at times) this is NOT the time to be that way! Speak your voice, be confident, and don't give yes or no questions.
If you happen to get an overdraft fee once or twice and the bank is nice enough to delete the overdraft fee from your account, make 100% sure you don't make the mistake again of not having enough money in your account to pay for things.
The bank might be nice this time around and let this mistake go, but don't be foolish and think that they will continue getting you out of these overdraft messes.
My bank teller also told me that the bank would be making a note that they helped me out this time around, therefore they cannot help me again if this were to come up.
We all make mistakes and these kinds of experiences help us grow and learn from them.
Yes, we shouldn't be incurring overdraft fees, but it becomes especially harder when you have automatic purchases coming out each month from the gym, landlord, phone companies and so on.
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Have you ever gotten an overdraft fee?
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