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Another new, free chequing account - No Fees For Me Account
September 4, 2012
3:29 pm
Doug
British Columbia, Canada
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Hi Everyone,

In a sort of "spinoff" post from this one, I wanted to let everyone know of a free, unlimited chequing account for all residents of Alberta that is very similar to the Envision Financial and Valley First Simply Free Account product.

It comes from their partner First Calgary Financial Credit Union (minus the free initial supply of cheques and free, unlimited Interac e-Transfers; however, one can add one of three "add-on" packages that includes three free Interac e-Transfers per month). I won't get it into details and won't bother e-mailing/messaging First Calgary as it's not as relevant to me as I am a B.C. resident but, suffice to say, is a very attractive day-to-day banking product for Albertans. I have a subsequent message into Envision Financial on whether they are still "partnered" with First Calgary and whether this "No Fees For Me Account", as it is called, from First Calgary will be "enhanced" (it actually came out first, in April of this year) to match the features of the Envision Financial/Valley First Simply Free Account and will keep everyone updated on this.

From First Calgary's website,

"The No Fees for Me Account is a free, unlimited chequing account designed to meet all of your banking needs. In addition, you can choose one of three upgrade packages to supplement our great list of standard account features.

It’s time to celebrate. The end of fees starts now.

Standard Account features:
Unlimited monthly transactions including;
- Cheques
- Withdrawals
- Deposits
- Bill payments
- Debit card transactions
- Canada-wide ATM transactions*
- First Cheque™ Global Payment™ Card transactions
- Online, Mobile and in-branch balance & transaction inquiries
e-Statements included (paper optional)
Cheque viewing
Mobile banking"

Related: I also have questions in to Envision Financial on their credit bureau checks, hold policies and whether Acculink (any Canadian credit union) ATM access is included (pretty sure it is, as they are an Acculink ATM network member but wanted confirmation of this) as well as whether they plan to launch or enhance a high-interest savings account product, potentially called "Simply Free Savings".

Cheers,
Doug

Footnote: First Calgary recently updated their branding and branch design and is very much targeted toward youth and reminds me, in large part, of a Coast Capital Savings, Vancity and Envision Financial.

September 5, 2012
12:40 pm
Doug
British Columbia, Canada
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hey Peter,

I saw you tweeted on the "Canadian High Interest Savings" Twitter account about the new Envision Financial Simply Save account, with links to the forum thread I started and the product page on the Envision website. Cool! I didn't even realize you had a Twitter feed (or maybe I subconsciously registered it was there but never looked into it!). Just curious, are you planning on tweeting about the Valley First Simply Save account and also the First Calgary Financial No Fees For Me account? Perhaps that's something that could be looked into as well, adding additional forum members to the CHIS Twitter account to add tweets and promote threads & certain products on Twitter? Specific self-promotion would not be tolerated and grounds for tweeting privileges to be revoked immediately.

Cheers,
Doug

September 5, 2012
1:52 pm
Peter
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Yes, definitely planning on Tweeting about those too! There's just so much news at once, so I'm trying to spread it out over a couple of days :)

As with most things on this site, I'd love to open up Tweeting, but Twitter is trickier, because you only have one login for one account. This would make assigning and revoking privileges quite difficult to manage. However, we could create a "ring" of various Twitter accounts and create a list based on those accounts. Does anyone else have personal finance focused Twitter account to share?

September 5, 2012
8:02 pm
Doug
British Columbia, Canada
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I agree - there's a lot of news all at once! :)

Oh, that's a good idea - creating a sort of 'ring' of personal finance-focused Twitter accounts using Twitter "lists".

I only have my personal Twitter account but I might be able to look into creating a personal finance-focused "list" that could be added to such a "list" on the CHIS Twitter feed.

Cheers,
Doug

October 20, 2012
12:10 am
Doug
British Columbia, Canada
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You may be interested to know that First Calgary Financial representatives have confirmed, via their Facebook wall, that their most popular free upgrade package for their "No Fees For Me Account" includes three completely free Interac e-Transfers per month, with no monthly fees and no surcharges. So, that makes this account probably the third best in Canada on that basis. :)

Also, an update: I've updated & officially published this chart on the web (nice feature within Google Docs!), in an HTML format without the Google Docs toolbar to give it a more polished look. I've also suggested to Peter to add a link to this dynamically-updated chart to the "highinterestsavings.ca" home page somewhere (either top menu bar or in the footer somewhere).

official weblink: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/pub?key=0AsrPQOw1M29-dDRrcFVpSFREWVNGSzE4Z2trUFd5dWc&output=html

short link: http://goo.gl/xUQmQ

Keep up to date via a dedicated thread, located here.

Cheers,
Doug

February 23, 2013
3:51 pm
Doug
British Columbia, Canada
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An update from First Calgary Financial via their Facebook wall post, in response to one my suggestions/comments: they will offer an online/membership application through their corporate website and, presumably, with guidance assistance from/accounts domiciled to their contact centre's transit (like Coast Capital Savings Credit Union currently offers), currently slated to launch in mid-April.

I asked a follow-up question if Alberta residency is required (similar to Coast Capital Savings) and to confirm that one would not need to visit a branch to complete the account/membership opening process. They were not prepared to get into anymore specifics at this point, only to "stay tuned" for the official announcement in a couple months.

I tend to think you will not need to visit a branch, it will be similar to Coast Capital Savings' process/procedure and the accounts/members will be domiciled to the contact centre's transit. The one thing I am unclear on is Alberta residency being a requirement and that could be a possibility, at least until they (like Coast Capital Savings) decide to continue operations as a federally-incorporated and regulated credit union by ditching the provincially-regulated systems.

More details to come. :)

Hopefully/maybe this will prompt others like Valley First/Envision Financial and potentially a Cambrian Credit Union or FirstOntario Credit Union to follow suit? ;)

Cheers,
Doug

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