In recent years, the number of fees charged by companies for everyday activities has increased significantly, as businesses try to find ways to raise more revenue without visibly raising their prices. This has resulted in many of us paying much more than we should be in additional fees for the same amount of service that we were getting before. Fortunately, many of these fees are avoidable by those that are paying attention and changing your habits so that you are not paying these fees can save you $1,000 or more annually.
Out Of Network ATM Fees
Many people choose to withdraw their money from whatever ATM is the most convenient at the time and end up paying hundreds of dollars each year in out of network ATM fees. These fees can range from $3 to $5 per occurrence, adding up to $312 to $520 each year for twice a week withdrawals that you are paying to take your own money out of your own bank account. To avoid these fees, plan your ATM visits carefully to ensure that you are always using an ATM that is within your network.
Checking Account Fees
Some banks are now charging customers with checking accounts a fee of $5 per month or more for having the account with that particular bank. At $5 per month, the average consumer is paying $60 per year just to have a checking account. Fortunately, the checking account fees are often waived for customers that perform certain actions, such as having a direct deposit of more than $500 sent to the account each month or making more than 5 debit card transactions. Read the terms and conditions for your account or contact a representative at your bank to find out what you have to do to avoid being charged a checking account fee.
Insufficient Funds Fee
There is never any reason to go over the balance of your bank account, incurring an insufficient funds fee. These fees are very expensive, often between $28 and $35 per occurrence depending on which bank holds your account, and can wrack up quickly into hundreds of dollars in fees for purchase amounts as small as $5. Although there have been some efforts made to rein in the practice of charging unwary consumers multiple insufficient fund fees for small transactions, the only way to be sure that you will not be paying this fee is to balance your bank account on a regular basis and always be aware of the amount available in the account.