Monday, March 14, 2011

Foul Ball

I went into the bank last Thursday to take out my money for the next 2 weeks. I wish there were still bank machines that gave out $5 and $10 bills rather than just $20 and $50 bills, it would save me a trip in to the bank to talk to a teller. Furthermore, it would save me from the frequent credit product pitches that the bank likes to give.

This is a little chunk of my most recent discussion:

"I see you don't have our XXXXXX visa, would you be interested in signing up for one today?"

"No thank you, I already have a credit card"

"But this is an excellent card. If you do any travelling and rent a car with it, if you get in an accident the card covers the insurance for you"

"I understand that, but I'm not interested in another credit card"

"This card has a lot of other perks as well that you might be interested in"

Seriously, I just want $5 and $10 bills, leave me alone.

"What is the interest rate on it?"


"That's too high"

"But if you pay the card off every month, you don't have to pay anything and the rate doesn't matter"

"It's more a matter of principle"

Okay, so right now it's not strictly a matter of principle, but in general it is. 19.9% is just greedy, especially when you contrast it with what they pay you in a savings account.

"We also have a low rate card you might be interested in. The rate on it is 11.9%, and the annual fee is only $20"

"My existing card is 12.9%, and I don't pay an annual fee on it"

*blank look*

"Which bank is that with?"


"Oh. I'll have to leave a comment in the notes about that"

Seriously guys, I know you can see right on the screen that I have a fairly healthy chunk of debt with your bank, why push it?

Okay, chances are your supervisor is making you do it, but still.

It used to be hard to apply for credit. Now it's hard to avoid having it pushed on you. I just wanted small bills.

The more the banks push, the more I want to pay the debt off NOW so that I have less of a reason to deal with them. I know a lot of people who are getting pissed off at the banks right now over it. One guy told his bank that if they don't stop calling him and pestering him to sign up for things he's going to close all of his accounts and go elsewhere. One of the girls I hung out with this past weekend got a message on her answering machine from her bank saying it was very important she call them back. When she did, they tried to sign her up for a credit card. Seriously? Call me saying it's important if someone has tried to drain my accounts, not because I don't have one of your credit products.

Banks, if you're reading this, PISS OFF!


Morgaine said...

I used to be a bank teller and I could tell you all about the huge pressure they are under to make "sales" - not only pressure from management and higher - but it counts as part of a bonus structure, but I figure you know that already. I completely agree that I hate going into a bank as well for the same reason, it seems that they always want to sell you something.

One good thing about my bank is that I already have a credit card with them and they are very loan sensitive (i.e. you have to have an excellent credit rating for them to even think about lending to you) so they know I'm not very profitable to them beyond how much they make off of me in monthly banking fees and interest on my c/c.

It seems though that with all that news about Canadian debt levels being at all time highs and that the banks are supposed to be tightening credit, it certainly doesn't seem that way :S

My money, my life said...

I might have to try your friend's stragety with CIBC VISA. Last year, they called me numerous times offering some kind of insurance - they said it was a good deal since it's free unless I don't pay my balances on time. Apparently, paying on time meant "as soon as the balance is posted", and not "when you get the statement in the mail". I had to pay out $13 due to this misunderstanding. Even when I tried to cancel, the CS rep tried to sign me onto more products "so I take it it's ok for me to add you onto the following products?" she asked, right after I told her how disappointed I was and how I felt defrauded... I had to repeat "NO" in a loud and resolute voice several times before she gave up and hung up on me.

Maybe the next time I'm pestered to buy a financial services product, I'll just say no and threaten to close all my account with them if they continue to pester me. I'm curious to see if it would work.

Anonymous said...

Banks and the department stores too! PISS OFF!

I've gotten into the habit of just telling them that I'm "paying off my debt to be debt free" when they push credit cards at me. That usually shuts them up, I guess because they don't want me to go into detail about what I scam I feel that credit cards are in front of their other customers. If I want your card, I'll find out about it on my own, thankyouverymuch!

Anonymous said...

And even if you got the card, then they start calling you about getting insurance on your card - in case you lose your job or unable to pay your minimum balance. Then, they try the scare tactic if you die, and leave your family in debt.

My response is that if I died, then that would not be a worry for my family.

Anonymous said...

Amazingly there ARE still ATMs that give out $10 bills. I found ONE here in Kansas City that is a Bank of America outside of a BP gas station that gives $10 bills. It is an AMAZING find as far as I'm concerned. ;)

Squirrelers said...

That would be annoying, I agree.

What's really nuts is what happened to your friend, where they left her a message asking her to call back but then trying to get her to sign up for a credit card.

Really remarkable.

Cassie said...

@Morgaine - I wonder a little if this is a final credit push before the Bank of Canada tightens things up on them?

@My Money, My Life - It seems to have worked for him so far, hopefully it works for you too.

@Red - I think I'm going to start pulling the "I'm a student" line on people that start pestering me, because it is true (part time)

@fabulouslyfrugirl - Lol, I'll have to remember that line.

@SS4BC - The last time I saw one I was still in high school. It was tucked away in a little convenience store in northern BC. It gave out $5 too!

@Squirrelers - I agree. I was awestruck when she told us that.

target10mil said...

I can't help but wonder if this is a Canadian thing (them being that pushy).

I _rarely_ visit the brick and mortar bank (I do everything online). But those rare times I need to deposit a personal check, I hardly ever get pushed any products. I can only remember one occasion and after I said "not interested" she dropped it.

Your story Cassie seems very extreme. I would have become very upset. That they were that pushy is crazy.

I would be surprised if it was because of your debt levels. They probably saw your credit score (which in the past you said was decent) and then got pushy on you. Or it could all be done via the computer and pops up on their screen telling them to push x,y,z on to you.

But I'm with you on that.

Cassie said...

It might be the Canadian way of being pushy. I've noticed credit companies use different tactics in different places.

I was definitely irritated by it. She was pushier than anyone I had dealt with at the bank in recent memory.

I'm guessing you're probably right about the computer promt, though it was a different brick and mortar location than I usually go to. I'll just make a point of going to my own for now on.

The Asian Pear said...

Wow. Talk about pushy! Can't they take no for an answer? Seriously! It's like they want you to be in debt too.