When in rains, it pours. Last week Bank of America announced a $5 fee to use its debit card. This week the Occupy Wall Street protesters are fanning out across the country, looking to unseat the bonus marchers in the history books. And now my own bank, Citi, has gone and raised fees on its checking accounts.
Beginning in December, Citibank’s mid-level checking account will cost $20 a month. And to avoid this fee, you’ll need to keep a minimum balance of $15,000 in your combined Citi accounts. Before this increase, the minimum balance to avoid the fee was just $6,000.
Citi will also assess a $15 monthly fee on its EZ checking account unless you maintain a minimum balance of $6,000. And Citi is apparently phasing out its EZ checking product, which was the first checking account I got from Citi nearly 20 years ago. And all of these fee increases are on top of a $2 fee hike (from $8 to $10) on its basic checking package announced last month. If you can meet the minimum balance requirements, however, Citi does offer up to a $400 gift card bonus on new checking accounts.
All three banks offer no fee checking accounts. PerkStreet comes with cash back rewards of up to 2%. And Ally Bank offers a checking account with absolutely no fees, not even ATM fees. So at least for now, we have some options.
Here is what others are saying about the onslaught of new fees:
Larger Checking Account Fees at Citi, But Bonuses Continue (via Deposit Accounts)
Citibank Jacks Up Monthly Fees On Checking Accounts (via the Consumerist)
Photo Credit: Nearest Neighbor