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Stopping Bank Overdraft Fees
Opt Out Of Overdraft Protection
These days, you usually have to opt in to overdraft protection. Banks in the past had major issues with aggressive overdraft fees and it became mandatory to opt in to protection. If you have overdraft protection on, call your bank and ask to have it removed.
The downside to turning overdraft protection off is that if you write a check without enough money for it to clear, it will bounce. On a plus side, many bad check fees and late fees are comparable if not less to the bank overdraft fees.
Saving Accounts Can Provide Overdraft Protection
Open a savings account at your bank and have it linked to your checking account. If a scheduled withdrawal does not have enough money to cover it, money can be automatically withdrawn from your savings account. Some banks charge for this service, so look for a bank that offers free automatic savings account protection.
Stop Automatic Payments
Automatic payments make it easy to get things paid on a regular basis but they can also make it easy to rack up overdraft fees. Pay your bills instead on your own accord. Put together a list of monthly bills and sit down at the computer once a month to pay them. If there is not enough money in the account, wait to pay a bill until you have enough money. This will keep your bank account from being overdrawn.
If this is your plan, your best bet is to start a spreadsheet. This will allow you to know how much you will need to pay each month and you can check them off as you pay them.
Recovering From An Overdrawn Bank Account
Recovering from an overdrawn bank account can be painful, especially if you have no money. You need to come up with a plan though. It is not something that you can simply ignore. Here is what you need to do.
Cease Using Your Bank Account
The very first thing that you need to do is stop using your checking account. No use in making the problem worse. Even if your bank will cover the new charges, the overdraft fees will keep on piling up.
Balance Your Overdrawn Bank Account
Now, you need to balance the account to see just what you will need to recover. If you still have checks out, take into account their value and the overdraft fees that will come with it. Consider everything and then figure out ho much you need to get current.
Bring Your Account Up To Date
Now, you need to bring your account up to date. First, contact customer service and see if they will waive any of the fees. Have a good sob story ready as well as a reason for why this will never happen again.
Typical Bank Account Overdraft Fees
Bank overdraft fees are quite high and can very quickly drain your bank account leaving you with no money. As of the writing of this article, the overdraft fee for Wells Fargo was $35 and Bank of America would charge you the same. Don’t bring your account up to date within a week, you might get hit with another round of fees. The fees can add up in a hurry and they might make the interest charged by payday loan companies look trivial by comparison.