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Not easy to open a tax free 5 year 3.75% GIC account
January 2, 2019
5:53 pm
davidgeorge
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Can't open the account online by myself. Called contact centre this morning and the representative told me she would forward my request to an advisor. I am surprised that the lady answered my phone call can't open an account for me while I was on the phone. The new account is still not shown up and the money sits on my linked external account with 0 interest.

January 2, 2019
6:16 pm
Save2Retire@55
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Yes same things happened to me. I didn't call. Just used the secure messages and someone called to confirm. And done. Not a big deal though.

January 2, 2019
6:28 pm
davidgeorge
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I called them this morning at 10am and the so-called "advisor" didn't call me back today. I just called them again. This time another representative told me that I should transfer the fund to Meridian first, and the fund will arrive in 3 days (this is not true, my external account is with CIBC, if I request a transfer today, the fund should arrive at Meridiam tomorrow.) Therefore, it takes at least 3 days to open the account, maybe longer if the "advisor" is busy. I decided not to open the account with Meridian.

January 2, 2019
6:50 pm
Oscar
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January 2, 2019
6:54 pm
Top It Up
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Remembering that DUCA is Ontario residents ONLY.

January 2, 2019
7:42 pm
Save2Retire@55
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Of course. That's what I did too. First transferred. Then opened the 5 years 3.75%.

It is okay. Take it easy. They are good and friendly people.

I actually kept getting replies from the Ottawa branch manager when emailed them and No I don't have hundreds of thousands of dollars.

January 2, 2019
10:16 pm
Canadianbull
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davidgeorge said
I called them this morning at 10am and the so-called "advisor" didn't call me back today. I just called them again. This time another representative told me that I should transfer the fund to Meridian first, and the fund will arrive in 3 days (this is not true, my external account is with CIBC, if I request a transfer today, the fund should arrive at Meridiam tomorrow.) Therefore, it takes at least 3 days to open the account, maybe longer if the "advisor" is busy. I decided not to open the account with Meridian.  

How can you open tsfa account without transferring money to Meridian?

January 3, 2019
1:49 am
davidgeorge
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Canadianbull said

How can you open tsfa account without transferring money to Meridian?  

On my first phone call yesterday morning, I asked them to fund my new Meridian GIC account from my linked external CIBC account (which is a common practice in many FIs, I am surprised that you didn't know) and the representative didn't say I can't fund my Meridain GIC account from my linked external CIBC account. Plus, since the 3.75% is for new fund only, I had concern that if I move my fund to my Meridian savings account first, the fund could be ineligible for 3.75% promotion rate.

January 3, 2019
3:27 am
Loonie
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You need to read the fine print. The "new money" proviso is set to a date in the past, not now. I believe it was August last time I checked.

Transferring first to your savings account is the way Meridian does all its GICs. Not a big deal. You could have transferred the funds in during December and been all ready to go on Jan 2. In my experience with them, the transition through savings account is just a formality.

I would have just gone ahead with it, personally. I don't see that Meridian did anything wrong. You have to expect that they will be busy on the first banking day of a new year.

January 3, 2019
4:22 am
davidgeorge
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I agree Meridian did nothing wrong. The things I don't like are (1) The 1st representative didn't tell me that I have to move fund to Meridian first and she was fine with my request to fund my new Meridian GIC from my external account. Maybe this is the reason "advisor" didn't call me because there is no money in my Meridian account to fund my GIC. (2) The contact center representatives are unable to open accounts while they are with clients on the phone. (3) It takes 3 days to transfer fund to Meridian. I don't know what kind of system they are using. For some FIs, if I request a transfer in the early morning, the fund can be in the destination account in the late afternoon the same day. (4) I can't open the account online.

January 3, 2019
4:54 am
canadian.100
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I as well as a family member have dealt with Meridian in the past. They seem to be a bit archaic and not very progressive - they are a mixture of branch service and virtual banking. Customer service is so so / hit and miss, and their "Money Mover" (to transfer funds in and out) is among the slowest electronic transfers - usually takes a day longer than most other institutions.

January 3, 2019
6:24 am
Koogie
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I agree. I only dealt with two CU last year that I had problems with and Meridian was one of them. Pretty poor customer service and a bit of a backwards, stiff "banking" attitude.

If you want the high rates though, sometimes you gotta keep quiet and deal with it.

January 3, 2019
7:31 am
Loonie
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Today on their website, Meridian is offering an extra 1% on your principal if you transfer in a TFSA, minimum 10K.

Every FI does things a little bit differently.
Wherever possible, I go into a branch to do anything at all complicated like opening a registered plan or getting a GIC etc. It's fairly convenient for me to do that with Meridian, so I have a relationship with someone there now and don't run into hassles. They will accept my old 20th century cheques from CAnada Trust, which many others don't want to do. The business about depositing to your savings account first is really perfunctory. I gave him my ancient cheque, he deposits it in savings and then immediately transfers it to GIC (registered or not). I like to be there in person because I can check that everything is done right, that I get the documents I need, and that the beneficiary form has been done.

I wish I'd been able to go into a branch and deal with a real person at Tangerine when I was trying to switch RSP to RIF. That was really scary!

January 3, 2019
9:07 am
canadian.100
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Loonie said
Today on their website, Meridian is offering an extra 1% on your principal if you transfer in a TFSA, minimum 10K.

Every FI does things a little bit differently.
Wherever possible, I go into a branch to do anything at all complicated like opening a registered plan or getting a GIC etc. It's fairly convenient for me to do that with Meridian, so I have a relationship with someone there now and don't run into hassles. They will accept my old 20th century cheques from CAnada Trust, which many others don't want to do. The business about depositing to your savings account first is really perfunctory. I gave him my ancient cheque, he deposits it in savings and then immediately transfers it to GIC (registered or not). I like to be there in person because I can check that everything is done right, that I get the documents I need, and that the beneficiary form has been done.

I wish I'd been able to go into a branch and deal with a real person at Tangerine when I was trying to switch RSP to RIF. That was really scary!  

I have noticed the big blue posters plastered on Meridian's windows re their "free accounts" for those over 60. Obviously, you are the target market that Meridian is looking to attract. They want you and you are happy with them. As they say, a match made in heaven!

January 3, 2019
12:19 pm
Canadianbull
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davidgeorge said
I agree Meridian did nothing wrong. The things I don't like are (1) The 1st representative didn't tell me that I have to move fund to Meridian first and she was fine with my request to fund my new Meridian GIC from my external account. Maybe this is the reason "advisor" didn't call me because there is no money in my Meridian account to fund my GIC. (2) The contact center representatives are unable to open accounts while they are with clients on the phone. (3) It takes 3 days to transfer fund to Meridian. I don't know what kind of system they are using. For some FIs, if I request a transfer in the early morning, the fund can be in the destination account in the late afternoon the same day. (4) I can't open the account online.  

Please correct me if I am wrong. I think EQ takes minimum 6 max 8 business days to transfer fund.

January 3, 2019
7:28 pm
Loonie
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It's true I'm well over 60, but pretty well every FI makes some accommodations for seniors if they are the kind of place that normally has petty fees. We are a target inasmuch as we are more likely to have money.

But a bank can't afford to rely primarily on people who are in the last quarter of their lives.

They want the deposits from us, but a bank has to also lend out that money in order to keep their business going, and seniors don't generally borrow money. They need younger people for that.

January 4, 2019
4:55 am
canadian.100
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Canadianbull said

Please correct me if I am wrong. I think EQ takes minimum 6 max 8 business days to transfer fund.  

Are u saying it takes 6 to 8 business days to do an electronic transfer (me to me transfer) with EQ? I think it is just 2 business days normally.

January 4, 2019
6:48 pm
Loonie
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It's the Hold period that's the issue, not the transfer time per se.

January 4, 2019
8:33 pm
Canadianbull
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Loonie said
It's the Hold period that's the issue, not the transfer time per se.  

Meridian representative told me that there will be a 20 days hold on my funds because I do not live in ON?

January 5, 2019
1:13 am
Loonie
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Wow!
It might be true though. I have found it difficult sometimes to get straight answers about hold periods. CIBC, where I've had an account for decades, once told me it could be anywhere up to a month, which I suppose is equal to 20 banking days. It was not a helpful answer.

FWIW, i've never had any difficulty with cheques at Meridian. But, then, I always go in person. It does make a difference in most cases if you are able to go in person, which makes online set-ups more difficult.

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