When it comes to managing our bank accounts, most of us try to take as little time as possible. We pay our bills online whenever we get that little email reminder, and only use the ATMs that our financial institutions own. We print out our bank statements and tuck them safely away into a manila folder and slide them into place in our filing cabinets.
But the truth is that when we get our bank statements, we rarely go over them. We simply don’t see the need to. After all, we tell ourselves, how could a measly Checking Account change so much over the course of a month’s time?
Your bank is probably very happy when you choose not to inspect your bank statement. Why might that be? Because most banks charge their customers with dozens of ridiculous penalties—penalties that if their customers knew anything about, might result in a loss of business.
You are doing yourself a grand disservice by ignoring those monthly bank statements. Your bank might be charging you for all sorts of things. Banks have a plethora of fees that they charge their customers with, including:
- Minimum Balance Fees—it may be your account, but the bank that you patronize will likely require that you keep a certain amount of dollars within that account of yours. Failing to do so will more often than not result in a penalty.
- Overdraft Fees—This one may not be entirely without justification, but it is worth the mention nevertheless. Should you happen to withdraw more money than you actually have in your account, you will be penalized for making such an error.
- Dormancy Fees—Perhaps the most unbelievable and unfair of all of the penalties your bank could subject you to. The dormancy fee is what you will be charged with then you allow your account holdings to sit, untouched, for a period of time that the bank feels is too great.
- Teller Fees—Maybe you need to talk to someone about your finances. You could easily request the advice of a teller down at your local banking branch. Of course, you will be charged with a fee for doing so.
There is no denying that a checking accountcan be downright useful. But, if you are not careful, they can quickly begin to take a toll on your finances.
By not reviewing your bank statement each and every month, your bank might be taking advantage of your faithful clientele right under your nose. That’s not very nice. Fortunately, you don’t have to stand for it.
When you go over your statement, search for:
- Checks that have no description
- Recurring charges
- The word “fee,” written anywhere on the document.
When you find a transaction on your statement that appears to be out of place, don’t hesitate to call your bank or visit one of their branch locations. Remember, always be polite to the individual that you work things out with—after all, they are not the ones responsible for the misunderstanding. Then again, don’t allow your bank to walk all over you, either. This is your money we’re talking about. You earned it, you deserve to keep as much of it as possible!