Here’s how you can ensure bank charges are kept to a minimum

If a bank refuses to reverse an unfair charge, you can take your complaint to the banking ombudsman.

  • Publish Date - October 13, 2021 / 07:47 PM IST
Here's how you can ensure bank charges are kept to a minimum
Before raising service fees, most banks notify customers through SMS or email. (Representative Image)

Bank doesn’t provide any services free of charge. As a customer, the way banks employ to charge money directly from your accounts becomes your major worry. “In the last few years, banks have made drastic changes in their rate of interest; they have either increased the current charges or have introduced new ones to the receiver of their financial services,” said Ankit Agarwal, Managing Director, Alankit.

There are certain ways of keeping the bank charges to a minimum mentioned below:

Account charges

Banks require their customers to keep a minimum balance on their accounts, either on a monthly or quarterly basis. These accounts should only be selected after weighing the associated advantages.

Read invoice

The second step is to ask for a proforma invoice from the bank to check the expected transaction costs. “Proforma invoice from banks is more applicable in the case of loans,” said Agarwal.

Negotiate

Bank rates may usually be negotiated. Negotiate for the best price after gathering quotes from at least two or three banks.

Keep an eye out for bank notifications

Before raising service fees, most banks notify customers through SMS or email. Verify that your bank’s records show your current email and phone number. Don’t forget to pay attention to any messages you receive from your bank, either.

There are no unpleasant surprises if you are aware of what the bank is up to. Also, pay attention to your bank statements, both on a monthly and quarterly basis. It is possible to opt out of paying for services you don’t use if your bank has started charging you.

Utilise the services of an ombudsman

If a bank refuses to reverse an unfair charge, you can take your complaint to the banking ombudsman. On the other hand, unless you are dealing with substantial amounts of money, experts advise against going there.

Start thinking of changing your bank

If you’re fed up with your current bank, your only option is to change. However, this should not be rushed. Open a new account with a different bank and make sure that all standing instructions including loans, SIPs, and Insurance so on) have been switched to the new bank.

This is the first step towards transferring your money. If there’s a problem executing the ECS mandate, your credit score will suffer. Follow these standing instructions to prioritise loan EMIs. Rewards points from your prior bank’s debt card should also be taken into account.

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