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List: Posted: 09/20/11
Banks have the right to charge fees for any new service they provide you with at any time, provided they inform you of such changes in writing. But who has the time to read through the thirty pages of fine print you get in the mail from your bank each month? However, there are some insider tips that can help you stop paying more than you need to for these bank services. Combined with a little common sense, these can save you a lot of money in the long run.
The first step in avoiding bank fees is to carefully review all statements you get from the bank. Learn about the most common fees charged by banks and then review your statement to compare. Check for overdraft charges, check writing charges, transfer charges, returned check charges, and general fees, which are bank charges for allowing you the right to hold money on deposit and under an insured arrangement.
Review each statement and determine what is going in and out of your account in the deposits and withdrawals section. Careful budgeting can help you avoid overdraft fees, which can add up to significant sums in the long run. Never write checks assuming that you will have money, be sure to check each time and make sure your monthly rent check will not make you go overdrawn.
In short, avoid spending money that you don’t have in order to avoid 50% of all extra fees.
If there are fees that are unaccounted for on your monthly bank statement, call the bank and ask them for an explanation. Before doing so, review your records to determine if you missed an official bank notice specifying new fees. If you were not notified in writing, your banking institution must remove the charges.
You may have to cancel an extra service in order to clear your statement of extra fees, such as digital check returns. But overall, being aware of these fees in the first place is the best way to avoid paying them.
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