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Are seniors taken advantage of? At Scotiabank for sure!
April 28, 2021
9:15 am
Vatox
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AltaRed said

It is very irritating, but $5k @ 1% interest is $50 before tax ($30 AT). That is barely one decent lunch for 2 people. Not the end of the world.. at least not until we get back to substantive interest rates (if ever).  

Yes, I too have the same account. The interest lost on $5000 is peanuts, but if interest rates go up in the future, the bank will find I’ve moved all my preauthorized deposits and withdrawals and bill payments to another FI. I’m only staying because I don’t feel like changing all my setup transactions.

EDIT: I think transaction charges are going up to $1.95

April 28, 2021
10:30 am
Bill
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As if younger people don't find ways to fritter money away, e.g. daily Starbucks, etc, etc, etc, etc....... And when you get older your opportunities for fun narrow a bit, some younger people don't get that it's kind of fun to fritter away some of their inheritance right in front of their horrified eyes. And the fun only increases the more they offer unsolicited help and advice re. your money. I'm not as careful with money in all kinds of ways I never would have imagined a few decades ago, it's now or never, and it's all mine. And if I need help, just like you (child), I'll ask.

There are lots of chequing accounts available with no fees, might have to leave a few thousand in some (if you can't afford that when you're old you weren't too smart how you lived), if you're compelled as a child to do an intervention there you go, there is no issue here.

April 28, 2021
10:47 am
KamWest
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Norman1 said

I think it is more likely that your Dad accepted that there wasn't anything he could do because he, for some reason, wanted to continue with Scotiabank.

  

It's not that he wanted to stay it is because he had no choice, he had his European Pension, Canada Pension, GST credit, auto deposit, hydro bill, gas bill etc etc.

The process to move out is too daunting for an 80 year old. They could charge him $200 a month and he would still have begrudgingly accepted. He really did not have a choice but to get milked every month.

As a younger guy I switched my main account from simply to motus and I can tell you it was daunting for me and the process to move everything attached took 3 months.

I was so tired of not getting interest at simplii that I had to do it. All my working capital sitting at simplii making peanuts was irritating me every time I saw it.

My elderly parents would never be able to do that and that my friend is what the big banks are counting on. It has nothing to do with loyalty, it has to do with them knowing they can keep milking until the cows come home.

April 28, 2021
11:41 am
AltaRed
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There is nothing saying one cannot have their interest accounts somewhere else. It costs very little to have a chequing account at a big bank and an HISA elsewhere with a me2me transfer. Albeit one needs to have enough computer skills to set that up and I recognize that was not likely an option with your deceased father.

FWIW, I don't incur a single cent in fees with my big bank basic chequing accounts, but if it came to consequential fees, I'd just open a no fee chequing account at LBC Digital to complement my HISA there.

As Bill also said, it is my money to do with it what I like. If I don't care about fees, that is my business only and I don't need a son or a daughter to cajole me otherwise. If I like that cute chick at the teller station, I just might go there at least once a week. I am 72 and getting more stubborn each year. sf-smile

April 28, 2021
11:54 am
Bill
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Just you wait, lots of young folks not having kids now, they'll be ripe for exploiting when they begin to lose their faculties, I don't know if their dogs will be able to help them out with their banking, etc.

Maybe gov't should put a cap on monthly bank fees for over 75 year-olds, maybe $15/month or so, just to stop the horror story situation. Of course the well-heeled seniors would benefit too. Would the young support gov't policy like that?

April 28, 2021
12:30 pm
AltaRed
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I think, by default, some banks automatically enroll seniors into the 'senior's discount' version once they quality. I seem to recall that from my spouse's bank as well as my own. Can't remember for sure now.

Your suggestion would be 'good customer service' by the banks although at a lower level. The cohort is not that big and seniors over 75 don't have enough transactions to 'cost' the banks money.

April 28, 2021
3:58 pm
HermanH
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Bill said Maybe gov't should put a cap on monthly bank fees for over 75 year-olds, maybe $15/month or so, just to stop the horror story situation. Of course the well-heeled seniors would benefit too. Would the young support gov't policy like that?

When's the last/first time getting government involved ever improved anything? 😉

Keep them as far away as possible.

April 29, 2021
6:26 am
Paulleewogg
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Kam West, and anyone else reading this... a few ideas regarding your mother's situation with Scotiabank.

They have an "Ultimate Account" that waives all the fees as long as you maintain a daily balance of $5,000.00 +. I think you said your mother had $20k in savings, so she could do it. It comes with a premium credit card with the annual fee waived as one of the account perks. The cash back card could work for her, if she started using a credit card for purchases rather than the debit card. She could make a little money over the course of a year. If you set up pre-authorized payment for her, there would be no worries about missed payments either.
The Ultimate account also comes with a free small safety deposit box and free cheques, if she has a need for a box and still uses cheques.
I have 2 of these accounts (they had 2 credit cards I wanted and I need multiple safety deposit boxes) and pay no fees, altho they did start charging me $2.25/month for a mailed-out statement. I cancelled it as I follow my balance online. Your mother may want the paper statement, so $2.25 would be all she has to pay, so long as the minimum balance is maintained. Beware tho, if you slip under the 5k daily balance, I think even for just 1 day, the monthly account fee is $29.95.

The premium credit cards come with a minimum income requirement but is waived for customers with the ultimate account.

I understand your rage at the debit fees. Years ago when my children were young, we had children's bank accounts with Canada Trust for them. Money they received for Christmas and birthdays ended up there. In those days, CT still paid a little interest. Well, somewhere along the way they changed policy and started charging a small fee per month for "maintaining" the account. A year had gone by and I went in to make a deposit for them and the account balance had shrunk over the course of the year. They updated the bank book (lol, quite awhile ago) and month after month the fees were printed off. I dont remember now what the monthly fee was...maybe only a dollar, but the fact that they "stole" money from my children caused me to explode. I made a scene. They never offered to reverse the charges. We closed all the kids accounts on the spot and eventually moved the adult accounts to TD. (Later Can Trust merged with TD, dammit, and I was back to being at least partially under the CT umbrella again.)
But it was a learning experience. I have accounts in multiple banks & CU's now and every so often, make a major move. They can only "cow" you if you let them. My last move netted me over $1000 in bonuses all for a few phone calls and a couple appointments to sign up for banking & credit card bonuses at Scotiabank. And I wasn't transferring millions, only a few thousand. It was well worth it.

Sounds like you've moved to Motus, but others may be looking. I'm cheap and found away to skirt all fees and get some perks as well. They're there for anyone who can maintain a 5k account balance. They pay no interest, but with no fees, a free premium card that nets me hundreds of dollars a year in rebates and a free safety deposit box, it seems like a fair trade.
Good luck.

April 29, 2021
6:37 am
KamWest
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Wow nice post @Paulleewogg

Thank you so much for all the useful information.

Yes the progression out of Scotia and CIBC for my mom is well under way.
The TSFA from CIBC just needs to move and I have to hold the scotia account for a couple of months until I am certain all the auto deposits have moved.

With Scotia as my mom ages I would always be concerned she goes under 5k. It would still not correct the fact that if she picked savings account with a debit card there would be a $5 fee. I would have to close her savings account and run only chequing because Scotia would not remove savings from the debit card for me.

At motus I have no such issues, everything is free and I even made the chequing account joined with me so I can top up her funds when needed.

My mom is also independent and I am trying to give her as much dignity as possible. A big part of that is control over her finances without being milked by a faceless corporation. Having lost half her pension income absolutely every penny counts.

You did use the word rage, in my case it was more disgust as I saw how they were ripping off my dad with fees that were over the top simply to use a debit card.

April 29, 2021
7:17 am
Paulleewogg
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KamWest said

With Scotia as my mom ages I would always be concerned she goes under 5k. It would still not correct the fact that if she picked savings account with a debit card there would be a $5 fee. I would have to close her savings account and run only chequing because Scotia would not remove savings from the debit card for me.

 

I get it. Free is good which you're getting from Motus and you don't want to fall into the "gotcha" bank fee trap the bank sets if u fall under the $5k mark.
Anyone who has an Ultimate Acc has to maintain a comfortable float above the 5k mark.
And old habits are hard to break. Your mother may not adapt to paying for everything by credit card rather than debit. Rewards type credit cards work in your favour if you pay it off in full every month, but many seniors hate CCs. Neither of my parents ever had a single credit card. They were both born before the depression and lived thru it in its entirety and were forever scarred by it. They were pay-as-you-go ppl, no credit. My father never even had a mortgage on their first house. He had saved it all up except for $500 which he borrowed within the family.

Sounds like you're doing a good job with your mum. I had POA for my mother after dad passed and I got her into a no fee seniors account. But she was very old by this point, could hardly walk and wasnt doing much shopping anymore. She never did debit anyway, cash only, so I didnt have your concerns.

You've found your answers @ Motus. Best wishes to you & your mum.

April 29, 2021
7:50 am
Kidd
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I recently received a notice from the TD bank, their fees are going UP.

My checking account HAD. Keep a minimum of $2,000 or you pay $1.25 per transaction. Over 2k it's all free. No interest. There never was a surcharge.

My checking account as of June 1st 2021 HAS. Keep a minimum of $5,000 or you pay $1.95 per transaction. Over 5k it's all free. No interest. There is no surcharge, if i dip below 5k.

From $2k to $5k and from $1.25 to $1.95.

April 29, 2021
7:58 am
dougjp
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It makes me wonder if the big banks buy burner phones to discuss all at the same time and similiar amount fee/balance increases. So that they aren't sued for anti-trust collusion or the like. sf-yell

There are 3 kinds of people: those who can count & those who can't.

April 29, 2021
8:55 am
Bill
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With those minimum balance amounts, I think if you drop below the threshold for even a second, e.g. they process your monthly rent payment a micromoment before your paycheque goes in, then the fees for the whole month kick in. Happened to me once, many years ago, and TD branch person reversed it for me, said they'll reverse it only the first time it happens. I've always kept a comfortable cushion in there since then.

April 29, 2021
9:37 am
Vatox
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Bill said
With those minimum balance amounts, I think if you drop below the threshold for even a second, e.g. they process your monthly rent payment a micromoment before your paycheque goes in, then the fees for the whole month kick in. Happened to me once, many years ago, and TD branch person reversed it for me, said they'll reverse it only the first time it happens. I've always kept a comfortable cushion in there since then.  

Yep, same with me. I forgot about a cheque I wrote and dipped below. All the transactions for the month were charged. Ever since, I keep at least $500 over the minimum. It only takes one second of a balance below the threshold to trigger the fees, so adding the money back in changes nothing for the month.

April 29, 2021
9:45 am
MG
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KamWest said

Having lost half her pension income absolutely every penny counts.

  

Hi KamWest, I hope you are aware that your mother can apply for the CPP survivor benefit, modest as it may be. She may also qualify for some amount of GIS. My condolences on your loss. I know how emotionally draining this whole process can be, especially since you also have your own business that you are running.

April 29, 2021
9:47 am
Norman1
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Bill said
With those minimum balance amounts, I think if you drop below the threshold for even a second, e.g. they process your monthly rent payment a micromoment before your paycheque goes in, then the fees for the whole month kick in. Happened to me once, many years ago, …

I think it is supposed to be on closing balances according to About our accounts and related services:

Monthly fees
For some of our accounts, you'll pay a monthly fee, no matter how much or how little you use the account. However, for some of our accounts we will refund the fee if you keep a set minimum balance in your account at the end of each day in the month.

I think TD is that bank that used to have a screwy issue of not posting one's payroll direct deposits correctly.

According to Payments Canada rules, direct deposits should be available at the opening of their effective date. However, a coworker's preauthorized payments bounced one payday in spite of having sufficient funds with his payroll deposit. Quite a few NSF fees on top of the bounced payments.

TD branch staff said initially said there was no error. It was his fault for not having enough funds in the account. I suggested he have another talk with the branch and inform them that TD was in violation of Rule F1, section 8 (Credit Transaction Funds Availability) by not crediting his payroll direct deposit at the open of the business day.

The branch reversed all the NSF fees and issued an apology.

April 29, 2021
9:54 am
Norman1
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dougjp said
It makes me wonder if the big banks buy burner phones to discuss all at the same time and similiar amount fee/balance increases. So that they aren't sued for anti-trust collusion or the like. sf-yell

There's no collusion. It is illegal to collude. But, not illegal to not compete.

It is actually quite legal for a business to watch a competitors publicly posted prices and match increases. There is nothing the Competition Bureau can do as long as the businesses don't actually discuss the price increase.

That's what repeated investigations into retail gasoline pricing have found. There is no collusion because they don't need to collude.

April 29, 2021
9:58 am
Loonie
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So, while they all claim to be innovators, they are really all just imitators.sf-surprised

Monkey see, monkey do, but they're all after the Top Banana!

April 29, 2021
10:08 am
Norman1
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KamWest said

It's not that he wanted to stay it is because he had no choice, he had his European Pension, Canada Pension, GST credit, auto deposit, hydro bill, gas bill etc etc.

The process to move out is too daunting for an 80 year old. They could charge him $200 a month and he would still have begrudgingly accepted. He really did not have a choice but to get milked every month.

As I suspected, there is more to the situation!

There's always a choice. If it was going to cost me $200/month, I could hire a lawyer for $500 to $1,000 to do the paperwork to redirect the direct deposits and preauthorized debits.

The return on investment would be an astronomical 20% to 40% per month!

Of course, time and effort would be involved.

Isn't that what the banks do to us? Give us a free iPad if we open an account that costs $15/month and set up direct deposits to and so many preauthorized bill payments from the account.

April 29, 2021
10:10 am
Bill
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Re. dipping below the threshold, the monthly fee wasn't a big deal, it was the transaction fees that added up.

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