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Author Topic: Check out the latest Credit Card scam
Privateer
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posted 05 March 2005 12:42 AM      Profile for Privateer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here's a tip: always read those pieces of paper that come with your credit card statement. You see, if the bastards are up to something they have to inform you first. With my latest CIBC VISA came this little leaflet with the Orwellian catch-phrase "Take Control of interest charges on your CIBC VISA card."

Here is what they have planned for their suckers, er, customers:

quote:
Currently, no interest is charged on new purchases appearing on your statement for the first time if you the full balance due under that statement by the payment due date. After April 1, 2005, for an interest-free period to apply to your new purchases you must pay the full balance due under your current statement by the due date and you must have paid your previous month's balance in full by its due date (so you are not carrying a balance from the previous month).

Further down it clarifies further:

quote:
If you don't pay in full in any month, you will lost your interest-free period on new purchases until you have your total balance in full for two consecutive months

April Fools, huh? Well I'm no fool. I'm cutting up my CIBC VISA and mailing it to John Hunkin (prez of CIBC) with a little note of displeasure. You see, if they get away with this, you can bet this will become the norm for credit cards. That's the way banking works. One bank tests a new way to screw customers, and if they get away with it, the rest will be ready to join in the consumer rape.


From: Haligonia | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
thorin_bane
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posted 05 March 2005 12:55 AM      Profile for thorin_bane     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
My mom warned me about this years ago, she worked for a credit union and hates all the banks/credit unions....she use to get most upset by the fact that the people that can least afford service charges are the ones always getting them. very regressive.
From: Looking at the despair of Detroit from across the river! | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Privateer
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posted 05 March 2005 02:40 AM      Profile for Privateer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The difference now though is the "two consecutive months" thing. This makes it even worse.
From: Haligonia | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
quagmire
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posted 05 March 2005 03:05 AM      Profile for quagmire   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Get a debit card, put a line of credit on it or overdraft, and shitcan the credit card.
From: Directly above the center of the Earth | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Anchoress
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posted 05 March 2005 03:23 AM      Profile for Anchoress     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Or just watch your pennies and pay cash.

When I was working in the IT industry, I was paying a whopping $60 a month in Interac fees, plus maintaining a balance on my credit card. Furthermore, I was often in overdraft and paying interest on THAT.

Now I have no credit cards, I only use my debit card to pay for something about once every six months, I maintain a >$1,000 balance and my bank fees are now a whopping $2.50 a month (and that's what I pay to have them send me my cancelled cheques back in the mail).


From: Vancouver babblers' meetup July 9 @ Cafe Deux Soleil! | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged
quagmire
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posted 05 March 2005 04:24 AM      Profile for quagmire   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You can quite often beat up the banker on the debit card charges, including the $1.50 for using a different banks machine, I don't get charged for them anymore. I'm thinking ING might be a better way to go to get some interest though.
I used to carry two debit cards on the same bank account when travelling, one in my wallet and one stashed away. I tried using the spare in Mexico a while ago and voila! the rules had changed and it didn't work, apparently they only allow one card per account now. Wasn't a big deal as I had a credit card, but it could have been a nasty suprise. I'm also thinking of getting another credit card for the internet, one with a very low limit and just pre-paying it if I want to buy something over the limit.

From: Directly above the center of the Earth | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Privateer
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posted 05 March 2005 11:44 AM      Profile for Privateer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
When I rip up my CIBC VISA, I'm killing $13500 in available credit, or potential debt, with it. I'm keeping a couple of other cards with much lower rates and much lower available credit. To be honest, having that much rope to hang myself with was getting to me anyhow, not to mention the damage if it fell into a criminals hands.

But getting rid of all credit cards is a problem because I wouldn't travel without one, as mentioned its handy for the internet, and if you pay your balance every month it is cheaper than paying for debit transactions.


From: Haligonia | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 06 March 2005 01:02 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yup. Cut up the credit cards and live on cash. My life has been so much less stressful since I gave my credit cards the heave-ho. I will never, ever own one again. Ever.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 06 March 2005 02:54 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm going to need one if I'm ever going to be open to the possibility of owning a house or a car. Need that credit rating. Too many things here in the US demand a credit check, like phone service, for instance. And because I have no credit cards of my own, I get a java.lang.NotEnoughRevolvingCreditException. For phone, I managed to scrounge a large deposit in.

The weirdest part was when I DID apply for a student credit card. I got a, guess, java.lang.NotEnoughRevolvingCreditException. Well, duh, how am I supposed to get a credit rating unless someone gives me credit? Isn't that what student credit cards are for?


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Scott Piatkowski
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posted 06 March 2005 05:36 PM      Profile for Scott Piatkowski   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Michelle:
Yup. Cut up the credit cards and live on cash. My life has been so much less stressful since I gave my credit cards the heave-ho. I will never, ever own one again. Ever.

Just curious, Michelle. How do you reserve a hotel room? Rent a car? Make an online donation?


From: Kitchener-Waterloo | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 06 March 2005 05:44 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I don't make online donations - I send cheques. If I did want to make an online donation, though, I might use paypal, although probably not.

I haven't had to make hotel reservations since getting rid of my cards, but I suppose if I did, I could probably send them a cheque in advance if I were planning a trip. If you want to rent a car without a card, you give them $500 cash, returnable when you get back. If you can't afford the $500 cash, then you can't afford to rent a car, because if you get into an accident, then you will have to pay the $500 deductible.

Besides, I don't travel by rented car. I travel by train and bus.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Anchoress
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posted 06 March 2005 05:46 PM      Profile for Anchoress     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ditto what Michelle said, except that I would never rent a car because I don't have a driver's license!!
From: Vancouver babblers' meetup July 9 @ Cafe Deux Soleil! | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged
Igor the Miserable
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posted 09 March 2005 12:26 PM      Profile for Igor the Miserable   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
If you aren't able to live without a credit card (and kudos to those who can!), you could at least move your business to somewhere like www.citizensbank.ca. They offer an Amnesty International VISA and an Oxfam VISA.

I've been a Citizens customer for about five years now and have nothing but good things to say about them (they're a subsidiary of Van City).


From: STRIKE | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged
unmaladroit
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posted 09 March 2005 12:49 PM      Profile for unmaladroit        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Anchoress:
...I maintain a >$1,000 balance and my bank fees are now a whopping $2.50 a month (and that's what I pay to have them send me my cancelled cheques back in the mail).

hey anchoress. something to watch out for. i have a cibc account that used to have the >$1000 limit/no service charges plan. in january, i noticed $18.00 service charges for the month. went into the branch and inquired. it seems they arbitrarily raised the greater than amount to >$1500.

"oh - didn't you get a letter? let me check. i see here that one wasn't mailed to you. ok, we'll reverse those charges."

they actually had it on record in the computer system that i hadn't been sent a letter. what a croc of deceit. so what they do is not only raise the limit, thereby changing the conditions of the contract, but also automatically bill everyone, and re-imburse only those who complain.

keep an eye those service charges. i estimated it costs my partner and i $120.00/year to maintain bank accounts. so we're now playing their game, and the net result is "they get nothing" for the privelege of storing our money. (besides the mortgage interest and student loans).

i too read the cibc visa changes. my synopsis is this: no matter what your history, if you fail to pay your complete balance issued on the monthly statement, you have to pay interest charges on every purchase for a two-month period (also by due dates) to get back to the privelege of no interest.

it sounds reasonable, no such thing as a free lunch, as my mom used to say. but the way they did it, in the fine print, will garner them millions before people catch on or it's changed.


From: suspicionville, bc | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
unmaladroit
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posted 09 March 2005 12:55 PM      Profile for unmaladroit        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quagmire:
...I'm thinking ING might be a better way to go to get some interest though...

but you have to have a bank account in order to transfer money to an ING account. so you still end up paying service charges to maintain an account. ING just lets you gain a bit more interest.

so here's a question. how much money do you have to deposit into an ING account, at their rate of interest, to offset the $5.95/month service charges for the average savings account from which to transfer?


From: suspicionville, bc | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
Agent 204
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posted 09 March 2005 01:16 PM      Profile for Agent 204   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Igor the Miserable:
If you aren't able to live without a credit card (and kudos to those who can!), you could at least move your business to somewhere like www.citizensbank.ca. They offer an Amnesty International VISA and an Oxfam VISA.

I've been a Citizens customer for about five years now and have nothing but good things to say about them (they're a subsidiary of Van City).


Hmm. Worth looking into.

The other option is to get a credit card that isn't really a credit card, like the Global Payment MasterCard. It's actually a debit card- the money is withdrawn directly from your account. It's like paying by Interac, except that you can use it online. The thing to watch out for, though, as DrConway pointed out in another thread, is leaving it at home when you go on vacation- if it's stolen, the money's gone. The obvious solution, of course, is to take it with you. I don't suppose it will help you build credit though.

I've never actually used this kind of card; does anyone have any direct experience with them? If so, have I missed anything?

[ 09 March 2005: Message edited by: Mike Keenan ]


From: home of the Guess Who | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged
Privateer
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posted 09 March 2005 05:52 PM      Profile for Privateer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unmaladroit:


hey anchoress. something to watch out for. i have a cibc account that used to have the >$1000 limit/no service charges plan. in january, i noticed $18.00 service charges for the month. went into the branch and inquired. it seems they arbitrarily raised the greater than amount to >$1500.

"oh - didn't you get a letter? let me check. i see here that one wasn't mailed to you. ok, we'll reverse those charges."

they actually had it on record in the computer system that i hadn't been sent a letter. what a croc of deceit. so what they do is not only raise the limit, thereby changing the conditions of the contract, but also automatically bill everyone, and re-imburse only those who complain.


I used to work for CIBC and I can safely say that the comment about the computer system knowing that you didn't get a letter was a little white lie. Basically, if the dispute is under $50 and you are good customer with no or few previous disputes, the bank caves-in. This time the person you're talking to attempted good customer relations by simply saying "you're right" whether they knew you were or not.

quote:

keep an eye those service charges. i estimated it costs my partner and i $120.00/year to maintain bank accounts. so we're now playing their game, and the net result is "they get nothing" for the privelege of storing our money. (besides the mortgage interest and student loans).

Actually, they are getting something for holding your money. If you invested $1500 yourself in a half-decent mutual fund, you could make at least $50 if not $100 a year. My mutual fund has been growing at 2% or 3% a month for past few months.

But the bank gets to invest your $1500 instead.

quote:

i too read the cibc visa changes. my synopsis is this: no matter what your history, if you fail to pay your complete balance issued on the monthly statement, you have to pay interest charges on every purchase for a two-month period (also by due dates) to get back to the privelege of no interest.

it sounds reasonable, no such thing as a free lunch, as my mom used to say. but the way they did it, in the fine print, will garner them millions before people catch on or it's changed.


I'm not sure what you mean by "free lunch", unless you mean the one John Hunkin eats at a fine restaurant at your expense.

But you're right, the CIBC and VISA will make a mint off people who didn't see it coming. And as I have discovered, VISA is much less willing to give back money than CIBC. They sure don't mind pissing off a lot of customers. I'm glad I quit, so I won't be hearing about it.

[ 09 March 2005: Message edited by: Privateer ]

[ 09 March 2005: Message edited by: Privateer ]


From: Haligonia | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
No Yards
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posted 09 March 2005 06:47 PM      Profile for No Yards   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Service charges are a crock ... there should really be no need of them ... In the payroll industry the way they make most of their money is to have the employer put the money in the payroll companies bank account early in the week ... they invest the money until the end of the week when they deposit the money into the individual bank accounts and pocket the interst earned.

Banks have more volumn and longer periods with which to invest our money.

On top of that, all this automation was suppose to increase their efficiency, and cut their overhead, and we get to pay more for the privilidge of them making more profits with our money.


From: Defending traditional marriage since June 28, 2005 | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 09 March 2005 07:28 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Now for the inevitable thread drift...

From: THE SENATE OPENS FIRE ON U.S. CONSUMERS
(today's column by Arianna Huffington)

- snip -

In a normal world, those elected to represent the interests of the people would have fought for bankruptcy legislation that would, well, represent the interests of the people. But not in Beltway Bizarroland. Instead of cracking down on predatory lending practices, closing loopholes that favor the wealthy, and strengthening the safety net for working people, single mothers and elderly Americans struggling to recover from a financial setback, the Senate put together a nasty little bill that reads like a credit industry wish list. Rubbing salt in the wound, Sen. Charles Grassley, the bill's chief sponsor, labeled it the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005--even though it does nothing to prevent bankruptcy abuse or protect consumers.

So what does the bill do? It makes it harder for average people to file for bankruptcy protection; it makes it easier for landlords to evict a bankrupt tenant; it endangers child support payments by giving a wider array of creditors a shot at post-bankruptcy income; it allows millionaires to shield an unlimited amount of value in homes and asset protection trusts; it makes it more difficult for small businesses to reorganize, while opening new loopholes for the Enrons of the world; it allows creditors to provide misleading information; and it does nothing to reign in lending abuses that frequently turn manageable debt into unmanageable crises. Even in failure, ordinary Americans do not get a level playing field.

Credit card companies have been feverishly lobbying for this legislation for nearly a decade--and it looks like the $34 million the finance and credit industries have contributed to political campaigns since 1996 is finally about to pay off. On Tuesday, the cloture vote on the bill was 69 to 31. The House passed similar legislation last year and GOP leaders are hoping to bypass the conference committee deadlocks that have derailed similar measures in the past and have the bill on President Bush's desk in short order. The president, well aware that credit card giant MBNA is one of the Republican Party's largest donors, has promised to sign the bill as soon as someone hands him a pen.

- snip -

From: Arianna Huffington at: [email protected]

Comment: Okay, everyone start cutting up their MBNA cards.

[ 09 March 2005: Message edited by: Boom Boom ]


From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Seiltšnzer
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posted 10 March 2005 05:50 AM      Profile for Seiltšnzer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
President's Choice offers a no-fee bank account, either chequing or savings, and it really is no fee. No minimum balance, no service charges, free cheques, etc. They are some how associated with CIBC so you can use any CIBC machine without charge. (This sounds like a commercial, sorry. I promise I don't work for them). The downside is they don't have tellers. I think everything has to be done with a machine. I don't know that much about it but it has satisfied me so far.

When I closed my account at CIBC they asked me why. I told them because of the fees. "Oh, we have a no-fee account." "Do you?" I ask quizzingly. "Yes, it costs $18 a month." *look of stupefaction on my part*

I recently got a letter from my bank here in the UK, to the following effect: "To increase customer service and satisfaction we are increasing the minimum balance on accounts from 1000 to 1500. To qualify for charge-free transactions you must now maintain a balance of over 1500." - Great, I'm more satisfied than ever.

Forcing customers to maintain a minimum balance in order to get no-fee service is such a rip-off. Whatever the amount is, say $1000, that is $1000 dollars you can never use. It is effectively the banks to do with as they please. Instead of investing it in something that actually earns interest, you are forced to use it to prevent money from being taken from you.


From: UK (nť Toronto) | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 10 March 2005 08:11 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Seiltšnzer:
I recently got a letter from my bank here in the UK, to the following effect: "To increase customer service and satisfaction we are increasing the minimum balance on accounts from 1000 to 1500. To qualify for charge-free transactions you must now maintain a balance of over 1500." - Great, I'm more satisfied than ever.

Ha! I think I would have written them a short letter with exactly that response in it.

I'd join the PC no-fee banking, but then I'd have to do business with CIBC, and I will never have any dealings with a bank again. Credit Unions all the way, even if it means fees.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 10 March 2005 08:21 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
My banking is with Caisse Populaire Desjardins, the only banking services available here on the coast. Never had any problems with them. I pay a monthly charge of $11.50 which covers all "service fees" regardless of how many transactions I make per month.
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
unmaladroit
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posted 10 March 2005 11:51 AM      Profile for unmaladroit        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Seiltšnzer:
...I recently got a letter from my bank here in the UK, to the following effect: "To increase customer service and satisfaction we are increasing the minimum balance on accounts from 1000 to 1500. To qualify for charge-free transactions you must now maintain a balance of over 1500." - Great, I'm more satisfied than ever...

hey privateer...you still have to maintain a bank account and its charges in order to buy a mutual fund, don't you?
hey seiltanzer...you got my letter! they must have one copy that gets circulated.
hey boom boom...you're getting ripped off!
hey no yards...i know exactly what you mean!

i was once "shushed" in a bank by a teller. it was when td bank posted signs on their walls stating that:
service within 5 minutes or we put $5 in your account.
(there is always an instant teller available for use)

i was in line to cash a cheque. my instateller put 7-day holds on deposits. so i couldn't use a machine that day. i had been waiting 15 minutes and wondered aloud if the bank would be depositing $15 dollars into my account. disapproving glares and "shush". could you imagine waiting 15 minutes in a lineup for a drink, only to have the bartender have to get a manager to deal with your comments about the time it took? (i got $5 bucks, and it seemed to piss off the other people standing in line...i don't understand...)

but that's not what i agree with, it's the whole "we've got you trained to do your own banking and are charging you for it in the amount of billions of dollars a year" attitude that we've accepted. it used to be that cash machines took a load off the tellers. i turned towards them for off-hours banking, very convenient. but since then they have progressed from free use for depositing/withdrawing/paying bills to a service charge nightmare.

all our canadian banks make billion dollar profits. nuff said!


From: suspicionville, bc | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
Privateer
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posted 10 March 2005 12:29 PM      Profile for Privateer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
When you're dealing with CIBC or any other major bank its six of one, half a dozen of the other. Whether you're paying service fees or losing access to $1500, the bank has you by the short and curlies either way.

Here's what I recommend: Either use Presidents Choice free banking for your daily banking and have another institution take the MF money from your PC bank account (PC doesn't do MFs as its low-service). Or if you must pay fees, at least pay them to a credit union where having an account entitles you to a democratic voice in how the place is run.


From: Haligonia | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
sillygoil
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posted 10 March 2005 12:35 PM      Profile for sillygoil     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ditto on shitcan the credit card - that or get a secured card.
From: Little house on the prairie | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged

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