If you wondered how to get overdraft fees waived, this is what you should do: call your bank. Making that call can turn out to be very rewarding as more than 50% of people who tried complaining to their bank after getting hit with a credit card or an overdraft fee found it to be very useful.
We compiled a list of tactics proven to help you get your expensive and painful fees waived by your bank. This is the ultimate guide!
Be quick to react
When you see that you are getting hit by fees, call your bank immediately. It will make it far easier to get overdraft fees waived if you address it as soon as it happens. The best way to be on top of your fees is to keep track of your expenses and bank balance on a daily basis.
Just call them up
Don’t schedule an appointment with someone from the bank. Just pick up the phone and call them…now!
This is the first thing you should do. That being said, visiting a bank branch can be an effective tactic – if you are up for the challenge and have the time. You can take advantage of the fact that the branch manager doesn’t want to pick a fight in front of all the other customers. Visiting your branch in person is a very effective tactic, but we recommend calling first – you might be able to avoid the hassle!
Don’t be rude
Try to be polite, even if you think that the fee is a mistake. The bank representatives on the phone speak to tens of angry customers every day. If you are polite you are far more likely to stand out and get a positive result. If you are rude, even if you are right, you might upset the person on the phone, and at the end of the day, your fate is in their hands.
Posting on social media
This technique often yields no result, however if you are lucky it can work like a charm. Banks want to avoid reputation damaging posts from going viral. If you write a well worded post on a banks social media page, they might see it and respond to foster a positive social media image. It is, however, quite difficult to get the attention of banks; some of which have limited social media presence or conversely so many followers that your post gets lost in the crowd. Most likely you will end up putting time into writing a well phrased post that receives a useless, generic automatic reply from the bank, but it’s worth a shot!
To help you pull the trigger more easily, here are the Facebook pages of some big banks:
Deal with the decision makers
Try to think of a friend or connection you know that works for the bank. If you have a personal connection, it can be very helpful. Even if you don’t, you should ask to speak with a manager or supervisor if the bank representative is being unhelpful. It is easier for a person of higher rank to waive your overdraft fees.
Take advantage of your status and bank history
There are many things you can say as a loyal customer of your bank to help convince them to cancel your fees. Here’s a list of just a few points worth mentioning if the bank representative disagrees with you:
- “I have never asked to cancel a fee or a penalty before!”
- “I’ve been a great customer of this bank for 2 years!”
- “I keep getting very good offers from other banks and I’ve never considered it until now!”
- “I always pay my bills back on time!”
Make sure you point out those things firmly and politely. Be assertive but not too aggressive.
When everything else fails
Sometimes, your bank might try to charge you an illegal fee that does not comply with state regulations. If you suspect an illegal fee, reach out to the regulator and make sure to let your bank know about it. You can do this by submitting a complaint directly to the CFPB by filling out the online form on their website.