Friday, May 30, 2008

I Hate Bank of America

More specifically, I hate their branding and promotions, but that's a large enough portion of my overall view that I'm not going to bother with any nits along those lines.

Exhibit 1: "Risk Free CD" - It's a short term CD, only you can take your money out early! Normally, you can do this with a small penalty. Right now, it's 2.80% APY for 9 months, while US Bank offers 3.00% for 11 months. It's a comparable rate to other big banks I suppose, but ING savings is at 3.00% and has 9 months at 3.30%, and is probably a better option for savings.

Exhibit 2: "Keep the Change" - Seriously. "We automatically transfer money between your accounts" has got to be the stupidest idea ever. It's a program designed for those people who are too spendthrifty, poor, or stupid to save even $10 or $20 per month without a gimmicky program run by someone else to help them. In that regard, it's probably a good idea from a business proposition, but still. It falls very close to "evil".

And the worst part of both of these is the ads. "What if you couldn't kiss your kids for 9 months, or go outside? Why should it be different with your money. This is America. You deserve a risk-free CD". or "We save everything in America, the whales, jam, everything. Why not your money? This is America. You deserve to keep the change." It's both the moronic jingoistic patriotism, the horrible metaphors, the annoying narrator, and really the entire thing.

1 comment:

  1. On Friday, June 20, 2008, I walked into the Parkland Branch Bank of America to make several deposits, cash a check and get my payroll out. The check that I was trying to cash was from a vendor who’d made the check out to my mother, who is a signer on my business account. She came into the back to sign the check and to show her identification.

    The check was over the teller’s limit so she asked the Assistant Branch Manager, Song Degarmo, to assist her. She was asked to verify the check.

    All I did was ask them to verify the check. The funds were good. The Assistant Branch Manager, Song Degarmo, explains to me that Bank of America no longer verifies funds over the phone. I ask to speak with the branch manager because I have been a customer of Bank of America for many years and they have always called to verify funds in situations such as this.

    When the Branch Manager, Linda Morley, storms out her office with my check in her hand, she states, “It is obvious that we will not be able to provide you with the level of customer service that you would like. Your account is not entitled to any special treatment. I am closing your accounts.” And with that she storms over to the main doors, opens the doors and turns back to say, “Please Leave!”

    Mind you, we are in the middle of the lobby and there are still customers all around. I still have yet to say anything to her. Quite frankly, I was confused on what prompted her to approach me in such a manner, and I was hugely embarrassed by her antics.

    The Assistant Branch Manager, Song Degarmo, places her hand on my shoulder and pushed me towards the door. I stopped at the door, turned to the Linda Morley and ask, “Can you please explain to me what is going on? Why are you closing my account?” I was not hostile. I did NOT yell at her.

    She says, “I don’t have to explain anything to you! I have the right to close an account for any reason. Please Leave. If you don’t leave I will call the police!”

    I was almost in tears at this point. My mother was still there. It appeared as though Ms Morley was unreasonably hostile towards her, but that had nothing to do with me or my accounts. I said, “You have not even spoken to me and I am the primary signer on this account. I deserve an explanation as to why you are closing my account. I am not being hostile. I don’t deserve to be treated like this.”

    “It is obvious that you are unaware as to how much we have bent over backwards to assist you. The bank is closed. Please leave.”

    “I have been in line since 5:20. The bank closed before I got to the teller window. Are you saying to me that I am not entitled to the same customer service as everyone else simply because the bank closed while I was in line?”

    “That is not what I said! You are putting words in my mouth!”

    Again, Song Degarmo attempted to push me out the door. By this time, one of the other bankers was standing behind them as if she was going to forcibly remove me.

    And so we left. I called the customer service number to find out why this happened. What did I do wrong? Why did she treat me like that? They said that the branch manager can shut down an account for any reason and that what she did cannot be overridden by anyone.

    I have sat on the phone and poured my heart out to several customer service representatives, and spoken to supervisors of supervisors. The last one I spoke with, Tammy Wright said that she was sorry but the only thing she could offer me at this time was a sincere apology.

    I spent Friday night in the emergency room because I had an anxiety attack that was brought about by this entire situation.