How To Switch Banks Without Fees And Hassle

08/07/2012 01:44 pm ET

So far this year, 39 banks have failed.

While the community bank I’ve used all of my adult life hasn’t failed, it’s in buyout talks and just got federal approval of the deal. As the details get worked out and revealed, I’ll have to decide whether to switch banks – something 1 in 5 banking customers have considered in the past year, a new Consumers Union survey reveals.

Not everyone switches because of mergers or failures, of course. When asked their top reasons why they’d consider switching, the most common responses from the 1,157 people surveyed were…

  • unexpected fee increases (43 percent)
  • better terms elsewhere (38 percent)
  • poor service (26 percent)

But despite their disappointments, fewer than half of those considering a switch followed through. Here’s why…

  • the hassle of transferring automatic payments and deposits (63 percent)
  • too much time and effort (37 percent)
  • fees to transfer the money (28 percent)

Based on this survey, Consumers Union is demanding Congress and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau make some policy changes. These include forcing banks to allow free, same-day electronic fund transfers and automatically transferring the customer’s automated payments and deposits within two weeks.

Will any of that happen? Rather that holding your breath, here’s how you can switch banks today, with minimal fees and hassle…

How To Break Up With Your Bank: MoneyTalksNews

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