HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

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White Coat Investor
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HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by White Coat Investor »

I decided to just invest the $5K minimum in my HSA Bank HSA (rather than leave it in cash as I have been the last few years to avoid the fees). That'll cost me either $30 and $36 a year, depending on who you ask. Anyone know how that fee is actually paid? I left $30 behind in the account (transferred the rest to TD Ameritrade) but would prefer to be billed separately for it if possible.
Last edited by White Coat Investor on Mon Jan 05, 2015 4:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Code Commit
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Code Commit »

My business pays $30/year fee directly (so outside of my HSA). They only take 1 yr's fee in advance.

$36/yr investment fee : they don't take it from outside. So, they debit my HSA $3 every month. I leave about $40 at HSA Bank and the rest at TDAM. Have been fortunate so far.
ABQ4804
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by ABQ4804 »

We are in a similar situation. Last year on one of the HSA threads here, someone mentioned they were able to mail a check to HSA Bank, to pay the annual fees rather than have them withdrawn from their balance. I emailed HSA Bank last month to see if I could do the same. Their answer was "Unfortunately we are unable to accept payment for fees other than withdrawing the funds from the health savings account... Any further questions contact Customer Contact Center 800 357-6246."

If you have any better success, EmergDoc, please post on this thread. And I don't know how much the monthly fees are, but I believe fees are different for $5000+ or lower balance. Hope this helps.
Angst
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Angst »

I spoke with them a month or so ago when I changed my balance to almost zero in order to put it all in TDAM and now at the end of each month $5.50 ($2.50 + $3) is deducted from my acct. I leave a little in there to cover it. I also asked what if the balance were zero? They said they'd pull it from my TDAM account and that they'd sell stock if they had to. They also told me I could not prepay either fee. I'm somewhat tempted to send in a check anyhow just to see what happens, or even two checks... maybe they'd take prepayment on just one or the other fee... but I'd hate to have to later deal with backing out an unqualified contribution. Anyone else try this?
Last edited by Angst on Mon Jan 05, 2015 2:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Aptenodytes
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Aptenodytes »

I'm with Health Savings Administrators and they bill for the annual administrative fee, accepting credit cards, paypal, etc. For the quarterly custodial fee they sell tiny lots of my mutual funds.
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daytona084
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by daytona084 »

I have an HSA account with HSA Bank. They deduct the $2.50 account maintenance fee monthly. The fee waiver amount is $5000 minimum balance for the month.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by niceguy7376 »

I send them a check every year for the yearly fee. I just did mine last week.
I am with HSABank and my health ins is with Humana as an individual family policy. Due to some agreement between HSA Bank and Humana, my monthly fee is $1.75 and I dont need to keep any min amount (i left $5) in there and can invest all in TD Ameritrade.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by White Coat Investor »

That would be really convenient if they would just pull it from TD Ameritrade. I usually have a little money in cash there from the dividends.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by asif408 »

EmergDoc,

I sent an e-mail to HSA Bank today asking the very question you are asking. It looks like others have already answered the question, so I don't have anything to add now but if I find out anything different I will let you know.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by ABQ4804 »

niceguy7376 wrote:I send them a check every year for the yearly fee. I just did mine last week.
I am with HSABank
NiceGuy, what address did you mail the check to HSA Bank? I didn't see a mailing address on the website. I'm going to try sending them a check for 2015 fees and seeing what happens. Does anyone know if it is $30/year administrative fees plus $36/year low balance (if HSA balance is below $5K)? thanks.
kksmom
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by kksmom »

Our employer contract with HSA bank/TDA involves no monthly fees for us.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by niceguy7376 »

I sent the check to their PO box in WI that is listed in their contact info when i log in.
My first time with the HSA account was last year and I did pay them in jan last year and sent a check already for this year.
Kiloaxe
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Kiloaxe »

I have not had any monthly fees either and I have <5k in the HSA
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Fryxell »

niceguy7376 wrote:I sent the check to their PO box in WI that is listed in their contact info when i log in.
My first time with the HSA account was last year and I did pay them in jan last year and sent a check already for this year.
Do you put any special note in the envelope or check to indicate it is a pre-payment for the fees?
AZK
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by AZK »

So are you just going to eat these fees?

I'm in CA.

I'm investing in Vanguard TIPS in HSA to avoid taxes.

With this information would you keep the yearly minimum in the HSA account and transfer the rest to TDA or just transfer everything and invest it all at TDA in VIPSX.

$5/month = $60/year = ~1% fees on $6450 HSA contribution.
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Aptenodytes
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Aptenodytes »

What would it take to update the Wiki with current fees? I suspect that because this is a new area things are in some flux and people who are trying to figure out where to put their HSA would appreciate up to date information. I made my choice about a year ago and I'm already starting to wonder if I should switch.

Or perhaps some other site already does this and we can just link to that?
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by wuj818 »

niceguy7376 wrote:I send them a check every year for the yearly fee. I just did mine last week.
I've been doing that as well but after their system overhaul in late 2014 they stopped accepting prepayment of fees. You should call them and ask about the check you sent for 2015.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by ABQ4804 »

Aptenodytes wrote:What would it take to update the Wiki with current fees?
I wondered about that also, but the standard fees for HSA Bank are posted on their HSA Bank website. However, it seems some companies and employers have different agreements with HSA Bank for fees, or pay them for their employees, so all that could be posted on the Wiki (then need to be updated regularly by Boglehead forum volunteers) would be the standard fees for each HSA - and there are many financial institutions offering HSA accounts.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by niceguy7376 »

So, as others have posted, I got my check returned back with a standard letter saying that they cannot accept the checks and that they are applying that from Nov 1 2014. I called them on Jan 2nd and then posted the check. Wish they had informed me then. I am right now on hold for a Cust Serv Rep to find out the fees. The letter says HSA service fee will be waived for accounts which maintain a min avg daily balance at or above Balance Waiver Amount. I am trying to find what the bal waiver amount is for me.

When I first opened the HSA in Dec 2013, since I came from Humana, the fees was $1.75 if I dont keep any cash. That was the total fee I paid for 2014. If the fees are too high, I need to see what makes the best option. Paying the fee and invest it all in TD Ameritrade or move to someone else. We currently invested totally for the last 2 year amounts and need to send amount for this year.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by livesoft »

If HSA Bank, the balance waiver amount is $5,000. That is listed on the same page as the fee.

And if one uses TDAmeritrade with HSABank and one is under the $5,000, then there are two monthly fees to pay which are also listed on the web site: http://www.hsabank.com/~/media/files/fees_s1 $2.50 + $3.00 = $5.50

An employer can also negotiate to pay the fees, but if you are writing checks to pay the fees, then I will assume you are not the employer or you did not negotiate the fees.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by packet »

So, obviously, there are a lot of people paying whatever the custodial fee is... out of band (not letting it get deducted from your balance by the bank).

Why?

Is the advantage the tax status of the dollars in band vs out of band?

Thanks.

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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by niceguy7376 »

I finally talked to a rep and they said that the fee for me is still 1.75 per month if I have my current balance (<$5) and everything else invested. So I said that the current balance will handle the first two months and I will deposit this year HSA amounts by then. Then I plan on leaving $50 in there and invest the rest.

If it is going to be $1.75, i will stay with them. If not, based on the fee, I will look around.

They are saying that the fee is considered a medical expense type and hence should come out of HSA balance.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by livesoft »

Did you specifically discuss the "Monthly Investment" fee with them when you have a TDAmeritrade account? That fee is different from the "Monthly Account Maintenance" fee.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by niceguy7376 »

Yes both when I opened it in Dec 2013 and today.
Since I paid $21 last year through check, there was no charges in my HSA or TD Ameritrade account for last year.
As for this year, I will keep my fingers crossed and wait for a couple of months.

I deposited $6450 for 2013 and $6550 for 2014 in Dec 2013 and Jan 2014 and purchased two ETFs for around 13000 in Feb. Interest on the amount till ETF was purchased was the $4.06 that is still with HSA.

I just checked both the HSA and TD account and I dont see any fees related transactions. Just the one way money move from HSA to TD Ameritrade in Feb 2014.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by tludwig23 »

On the bright side, I was charged the $3 Investment Fee this month, despite having had a balance of $5000.03. I called and they said it was a "mistake". (really? a computer can't accurately tell if my balance is greater than or less than $5000?). 6 days later I am still waiting for my $3 back. (The customer service representative said she would fill out a form when I called 6 days ago.) I would call back, but I'm waiting to be charged the $2.50 Account Maintenance Fee for having a balance < $5,000, which of course they caused from their initial mistake. Then I can make one call back to correct both mistakes. Hopefully. I'm quickly losing faith in their abilities.
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by billern »

tludwig23 wrote:On the bright side, I was charged the $3 Investment Fee this month, despite having had a balance of $5000.03. I called and they said it was a "mistake". (really? a computer can't accurately tell if my balance is greater than or less than $5000?). 6 days later I am still waiting for my $3 back. (The customer service representative said she would fill out a form when I called 6 days ago.) I would call back, but I'm waiting to be charged the $2.50 Account Maintenance Fee for having a balance < $5,000, which of course they caused from their initial mistake. Then I can make one call back to correct both mistakes. Hopefully. I'm quickly losing faith in their abilities.
I had a similar issue and I see a pending 'contribution' to reverse the erroneous fee that I called them on about a week ago. It looks like they upgraded their front-end system since the look of the site has changed. I imagine they also changed their bank-end system and screwed up their fee calculation which I agree is pretty ridiculous for a bank with a fairly simple fee structure.

Luckily, I had some extra cash in the account so the fee did not reduce my balance to below $5K so I don't have to worry about this month. Good luck getting the 2nd month fee waived!
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by Bowline »

HSA Bank charges a "Monthly Account Maintenance"fee of $2.50 unless a "Balance Waiver Amount" of $5,000 (for 2015) is maintained in the HSA. But there is a catch. After first opening the account, even if $5,000 (or more) is deposited and maintained in the HSA, there will still be a charge for $2.50. Why? If the money was deposited on any day of the month except the first day of the month, that means there wasn't the necessary minimum on all days of the month. For example, you make the deposit on the 2nd of the month; then, the account lacked the minimum on the 1st day of the month. You get dinged. HSA's computer algorithm isn't smart enough to pick this up and charges the account. You can get this charge reversed by phoning in, but it takes a second phone call in my experience--even after extracting a promise to have the charge reversed during the first phone call. (Four phone calls if you have two accounts, one for husband and one for wife.)
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Re: HSA Bank Low Balance Fee- How is it paid?

Post by amitb00 »

I asked in a different thread but this one seems more appropriate:
What is total cost to have an account with HSA bank if it is linked with TDAmeritrade and balance with HSABank is minimal (say 0). I saw $2.50 but then I am also reading about an investment fees of $3 written on the web. Does anyone know of fees is $2.5 or $5.5.
Further if one has $0 at HSA Bank, do they still pay the fees? Seems yes, but some folks said that if amount is not there to cover fees, you may not have to pay. (seems not true though).
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