Switch bank?

I really hate the federal government which never does anything. Just like the changes that have now taken effect that make it easier for you to switch banks.

Back on our old home, there were a few threads on the topic, and some of our old friends stated that the proposal:

1. would never happen
2. was a waste of time and money
3. another promise that would never be kept

Here is a link to one of the threads that Tim had on bank switching, but there are more.

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11 Responses

  1. This scheme I have no problems with and I’m sure it will evolve and be tweaked over time to become even better.

    Grocery Watch on the other hand….. the less said the better.

  2. Very true Adrian, but at least things are happening.

  3. I think the only thing that’s been made ‘easier’ to switch at this stage is just a savings/cheque account or credit card.

    Switching a mortgage is still more difficult.

    By the way, here’s a tip – phone up your credit card company and tell them you want to cancel it, they will ask you why.

    Tell them it’s because the interest rate is too high and you can get a cheaper deal somewhere else. they will hum and hah for a bit, but will end up giving you a lower rate.

    I tried it with NAB and they knocked my previously 17% visa card down to 12%.

    I’m going to have another go soon, seeing as interest rates have been dropping…

  4. I did a similar thing stuntreb but then got stung later with another change I tried. OT I know but shows what can happen.

    I received in the mail an offer to upgrade my 55 day gold card to a platinum service that offered a lot more for $140 pa. I carefully weighed up all the pros and cons the brochure and accompanying booklet offered so took up the offer working out it would be beneficial to me.

    I was informed there would be a letter in the mail within the next few days detailing all the conditions of the card and the card would follow within 7 to 10 days. The card arrived in a couple of days and the letter arrived 9 days later. My jaw dropped when I read the conditions that were not mentioned in their promotional pack. An “upgrade” was going to leave me far worse off and I had the privilege of paying an annual fee to be worse off.

    I contacted them straight away and they started getting stroppy on me for not reading the conditions before getting the card, and they wouldn’t listen no matter how many times I told them the card arrived a week before the letter detailing the conditions, thus not enabling me to cancel the card before it arrived.

    So I asked to go back to my venerable old 55 day fee free gold card. It arrived three days later and the conditions for it arrived a week after that. Now there were fees on my previously fee free (because of military service) transactions and I’m having a hell of a time getting the fees removed. It was only threatening to go to another bank that also offered fee free cards for those who had done long military service that got the fees removed.

    Now nothing is going to get me to give up my old venerable gold card even though my status allows me to have higher level cards.

  5. Adrian,

    That’s a woeful tale.

    I used to have a platinum amex card, back in the days when you had to qualify for it. It was a total w**k. It felt great to flash it around, and there were some really good perks, but I think the annual fee was about $700 per annum. Which was just crazy, when I look back at it now.

    But then I was a twentysomething living in Sydney so “it felt gooood…”

    Now I’m much wiser and older and just have my trusty gold card – no annual fees, and I usually clear the balance each month – just to beat the credit card companies at their own game.

    What irks me though, is that they still keep writing to me to increase my limit. The last offer was $17,000.

    As if I could afford to have $17,000 racked up on plastic?

    Madness. And yet we’re told that the Banks in Australia are a lot more ‘responsible’ than the banks in the US.

    Not when it comes to credit cards me thinks.

  6. Says it all really:

    Australia at risk?

  7. There’s an outfit encouraging people to switch to their credit cards conducting a pretty aggressive ad campaign on tv. I can’t for the life of me think what mob it is, but they’re offering interest rates as low as 2.9% on balances you transfer from other accounts and limits as high as $25,000. You can have a gold card if you earn over $35K and silver for incomes over $25K. They don’t advertise the rates you’d be up for if you access the credit they’re offering, though. Funny, that.
    My daughter falls into the silver category and I hope she is never tempted by this stuff. We definitely would all be rooned if their highly suspect offers were taken up, but I suppose some people will be lured by the siren call of $25K credit and the perception that the interest rate will only be 2.9%.
    I’ll stick to my multi-access card, thanks.

  8. jane,

    I received an offer in the mail from ANZ to switch my credit card balance to them at a rate of .99% for the first 12 months.

    Like you say, it all sounds very attractive, but it wasn’t so forthcoming in disclosing what the interest rate adjusts to after 12 months.

    The Banks. All ratbags.

  9. If this credit crunch is so bad why do I get offers of credit every week in the order of tens of thousands of dollars???

    I don’t have credit cards but will be getting a Bank of Queensland debit card, which has the same exposure as it is a hassle sometimes doing business without this option of money transfer.

    My father advised me never to use credit unless you can profit from this action…he was an excellent businessman.

  10. reb, I know what you mean. We get letters from the likes of ANZ etc promising the earth, but like you say, they’re pretty vague on the bottom line stuff.

  11. Damn if the same bank I just dissed above did the right thing at lunch time today.

    I had to rush into the bank to withdraw a fair amount of money from an interest bearing deposit account I keep for emergencies. On the rare occasion I have a little bit of money spare or get things like a bonus at work it goes into my guffle account (old ex-Navy can tell you what a guffle account is).

    The type of account was recommended to me when the bank assistant said I could do better with my savings than the current setup, and she was right.

    Well out of the blue as I was withdrawing the emergency money from this account the teller says I can do much better than that account as it has been superseded by a better paying no fee more flexible product, and blowed if she wasn’t right.

    Every now and again a bank can do the right thing.

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