Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

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RobLyons
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Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

People's United Bank, the bank we do our personal banking business with has undergone a merger with M&T Bank and we have faced numerous problems during this time. This is our only liquid emergency fund and our main checking/savings account, although there's other streams I could tap into in the event of a true emergency. Link to yesterday's new clip below. Prior to the merger, we were assured none of these problems would occur, but they have. Our bank(s) have merged twice so far and each time it seems we are on the losing end, but this time things are much worse.

It's been over two weeks and these are the ongoing problems:

We are unable to deposit checks.
We cannot perform many online functions.
I cannot edit bill pays.
Their customer service via phone is non existent.
Their brick & mortar customer service reps have no answers to our questions.
They have sent us several email notices that some scheduled bill pays on certain dates need to be rescheduled or they will not execute

I'd say the only positive part of this process is that my normally scheduled direct deposits and bill pays so far have not been impacted besides I cannot change my current bill pay amounts or dates.


With this said, is it wise to change banks immediately, or wait out this transition period?


Link to news clip:

https://www.wcax.com/2022/09/13/new-peo ... s-members/
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Duckie
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by Duckie »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:28 pm With this said, is it wise to change banks immediately, or wait out this transition period?
I would open an account at a new bank ASAP. Change your direct deposits and set up bill pay so that if you need to pay more to a company you can pay the extra from the new account. Are your current bill pays automatic? Do the ATMs work at the old bank? Do checks work, i.e. if you write a check will it be honored? Will tellers give you cash?
123
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by 123 »

It doesn't seem like M &T Bank did sufficient planning and organizing to give the customers they were acquiring the respect they deserved. Perhaps they were too anxious to reduce costs. I would likely start looking for another bank. If your area has a number of small banks it's possible that many of them could be candidates for an acquisition by a large bank. It may be time to consider one of the big national banks, Bank of America, Chase, Citibank, or Wells Fargo if there is a branch in your area. Another small hometown bank could easily be acquired and you'd be back at step 1.
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HomeStretch
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by HomeStretch »

It’s been 6 business days since People’s accounts were transitioned and available as M&T accounts on 9/6. Seems like they are having surprisingly extensive transition issues that hopefully won’t continue much longer. Whether you should change banks is really a personal decision.

If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.
gavinsiu
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by gavinsiu »

It's up to you, but I had some truly terrible experience with mergers with my mom's bank. When you call customer service, your issue was't logged, so unless you get that exact person, you would have to start the process all over again. Because it was a merger, the person handling your case was likely to get laid off. All I was trying to do was get a signature card because my mom wanted to write checks off the money market fund. After 6 months, I was unable to do that. I sent a letter by snail mail indicating that I will be calling the regulatory agency and in a few weeks gets a call from some VP and apologize for the issue and actually send the signature card. He blamed it on staff turnover and system integration issue but promise things would be better. It did get better after year. Frankly I would have closed the account if it was my account.

In your shoes, I would at least transfer some money to a different bank so you have some sort of backup in case you can't pay your bills.
SmallSaver
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by SmallSaver »

Mergers are always hard. If they're well-planned and executed the disruption should be minimal. It doesn't sound like that's the case here. That could just mean a poor process, or a long-term degradation of service. Whether or not it's worth it to wait it out is up to you.

If you do leave, the other posters point about avoiding small institutions is unfortunately a good one. Small banks and credit unions are having a really hard time staying competitive and are prime merger & acquisition targets. On the other hand, local banks and credit unions that do attain a certain size (call it >$500M) can be a good choice if you want to avoid going with a national.
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Stinky
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by Stinky »

Look into your local credit union.

Our long time bank was gobbled up by (the evil) PNC last year. They promptly closed the two branches closest to our house and cut customer service to the bone.

We moved all accounts to the closest credit union to our house. We couldn’t be happier with our CU.
Retired life insurance company financial officer who sincerely believes that ”It’s a GREAT day to be alive!”
Topic Author
RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

Duckie wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:44 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:28 pm With this said, is it wise to change banks immediately, or wait out this transition period?
I would open an account at a new bank ASAP. Change your direct deposits and set up bill pay so that if you need to pay more to a company you can pay the extra from the new account. Are your current bill pays automatic? Do the ATMs work at the old bank? Do checks work, i.e. if you write a check will it be honored? Will tellers give you cash?

Are your current bill pays automatic?
Yes

Do the ATMs work at the old bank?
Haven't checked but I can check tomorrow.

Do checks work, i.e. if you write a check will it be honored?
Also have not checked. We rarely write checks. We have been told we can keep using the old checks until we run out. Will check.

Will tellers give you cash?
Most likely yes, will check tomorrow.
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm
If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.

I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

gavinsiu wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:54 pm
In your shoes, I would at least transfer some money to a different bank so you have some sort of backup in case you can't pay your bills.


I will do this tomorrow. Sounds like I should select a very large bank. Any recommendations?
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

Stinky wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:43 pm Look into your local credit union.

Our long time bank was gobbled up by (the evil) PNC last year. They promptly closed the two branches closest to our house and cut customer service to the bone.

We moved all accounts to the closest credit union to our house. We couldn’t be happier with our CU.


We do have an account at a local credit union, which we have been doing business with for a very long time, mostly to finance vehicles but now we have our HELOC with them. They are excellent with better rates than almost all others. Only negative is they are located a good distance away, and only have 2 local branches. Our current bank is 5 minutes down the street.
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anon_investor
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by anon_investor »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:47 pm
gavinsiu wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:54 pm
In your shoes, I would at least transfer some money to a different bank so you have some sort of backup in case you can't pay your bills.


I will do this tomorrow. Sounds like I should select a very large bank. Any recommendations?
One with a branch near you.
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Stinky
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by Stinky »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:51 pm
Stinky wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:43 pm Look into your local credit union.

Our long time bank was gobbled up by (the evil) PNC last year. They promptly closed the two branches closest to our house and cut customer service to the bone.

We moved all accounts to the closest credit union to our house. We couldn’t be happier with our CU.
We do have an account at a local credit union, which we have been doing business with for a very long time, mostly to finance vehicles but now we have our HELOC with them. They are excellent with better rates than almost all others. Only negative is they are located a good distance away, and only have 2 local branches. Our current bank is 5 minutes down the street.
How often do you actually need to go into a branch?

Once you get a new checking account established, maybe the distance to the local branch won’t be so relevant - because you almost never need to go there.
Retired life insurance company financial officer who sincerely believes that ”It’s a GREAT day to be alive!”
prd1982
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by prd1982 »

I prefer credit unions. However, if you are going to use a bank, I would stay with M&T. Yes, they are having problems. I’m sure they will get them squared away. I know they had problems with userids having foreign characters; I cannot believe that wasn’t caught in a dry run.

One good thing of sticking with M&T is they are not likely to be taken over by another bank! Remember, this wasn’t a merger; it was a takeover.
HomeStretch
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by HomeStretch »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:46 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm
If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.

I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
Fidelity has a $100 bonus offer for depositing $50 into a CMA (see DofC post with bonus code and link, below). So you can get paid to try it out!
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/fidelity ... 0-deposit/
delamer
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by delamer »

HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 6:16 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:46 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm
If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.

I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
Fidelity has a $100 bonus offer for depositing $50 into a CMA (see DofC post with bonus code and link, below). So you can get paid to try it out!
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/fidelity ... 0-deposit/
Do you know if the CMA allows for direct deposit?

Right now, the pension checks and the Social Security checks for both my husband and I are deposited into the same checking account (so four checks total). It has occurred to me that maybe we should have at least one of the four go into a different account in case of hacking or other temporary access issues.

Thanks.
One thing that humbles me deeply is to see that human genius has its limits while human stupidity does not. - Alexandre Dumas, fils
gavinsiu
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by gavinsiu »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:47 pm
gavinsiu wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:54 pm
In your shoes, I would at least transfer some money to a different bank so you have some sort of backup in case you can't pay your bills.


I will do this tomorrow. Sounds like I should select a very large bank. Any recommendations?
I do not recommend, a lot of them are closing branches or converting them to cashless locations. if you want to have a local locations, consider a credit union or local bank. The only good thing about big banks is that they have more ATMs.

If you don't care about local location, consider a internet bank or banks at your brokerage that might offer a higher rate of interest.
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anon_investor
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by anon_investor »

delamer wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 8:39 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 6:16 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:46 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm
If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.

I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
Fidelity has a $100 bonus offer for depositing $50 into a CMA (see DofC post with bonus code and link, below). So you can get paid to try it out!
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/fidelity ... 0-deposit/
Do you know if the CMA allows for direct deposit?

Right now, the pension checks and the Social Security checks for both my husband and I are deposited into the same checking account (so four checks total). It has occurred to me that maybe we should have at least one of the four go into a different account in case of hacking or other temporary access issues.

Thanks.
The Fidelity CMA does allow for direct deposit. I switched over my direct deposit to my Fidelity CMA last month and received a pay check already (it actually showed up 1 day early). I also have automatic payment of my Wells Fargo mortgage direct debited from my Fidelity CMA and have paid many credit card bills from it as well via scheduled ACH payments (CCs issued by Chase, Citi, BoA, Barclays, Discover and Amex). I am very happy using my Fidelity CMA as my main checking account since my funds can all be held in SPRXX (currently earning 2.10%).
NewishBog
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by NewishBog »

prd1982 wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 6:03 pm I prefer credit unions. However, if you are going to use a bank, I would stay with M&T. Yes, they are having problems. I’m sure they will get them squared away. I know they had problems with userids having foreign characters; I cannot believe that wasn’t caught in a dry run.

One good thing of sticking with M&T is they are not likely to be taken over by another bank! Remember, this wasn’t a merger; it was a takeover.
This. Avoid any further acquisitions. And, for any auto-pay bill payments coming up soon, plan on paying those with an alternate method just in case.
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

Stinky wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:56 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:51 pm
Stinky wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:43 pm Look into your local credit union.

Our long time bank was gobbled up by (the evil) PNC last year. They promptly closed the two branches closest to our house and cut customer service to the bone.

We moved all accounts to the closest credit union to our house. We couldn’t be happier with our CU.
We do have an account at a local credit union, which we have been doing business with for a very long time, mostly to finance vehicles but now we have our HELOC with them. They are excellent with better rates than almost all others. Only negative is they are located a good distance away, and only have 2 local branches. Our current bank is 5 minutes down the street.
How often do you actually need to go into a branch?

Once you get a new checking account established, maybe the distance to the local branch won’t be so relevant - because you almost never need to go there.


Wife goes once a week or every other week
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 6:16 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:46 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm
If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.

I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
Fidelity has a $100 bonus offer for depositing $50 into a CMA (see DofC post with bonus code and link, below). So you can get paid to try it out!
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/fidelity ... 0-deposit/


I just took advantage of this. Thank you!
I was going to send you a pm but it did not allow me. Have a great day!
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delamer
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by delamer »

anon_investor wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 9:27 pm
delamer wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 8:39 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 6:16 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:46 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm
If you have accounts with Fidelity or Schwab, you could add a cash management account (CMA) as a future back-up as the CMA offers most bank features - bill pay, paper checks, ATM/debit card, etc.

I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
Fidelity has a $100 bonus offer for depositing $50 into a CMA (see DofC post with bonus code and link, below). So you can get paid to try it out!
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/fidelity ... 0-deposit/
Do you know if the CMA allows for direct deposit?

Right now, the pension checks and the Social Security checks for both my husband and I are deposited into the same checking account (so four checks total). It has occurred to me that maybe we should have at least one of the four go into a different account in case of hacking or other temporary access issues.

Thanks.
The Fidelity CMA does allow for direct deposit. I switched over my direct deposit to my Fidelity CMA last month and received a pay check already (it actually showed up 1 day early). I also have automatic payment of my Wells Fargo mortgage direct debited from my Fidelity CMA and have paid many credit card bills from it as well via scheduled ACH payments (CCs issued by Chase, Citi, BoA, Barclays, Discover and Amex). I am very happy using my Fidelity CMA as my main checking account since my funds can all be held in SPRXX (currently earning 2.10%).
I appreciate the information.

I don’t want to make the CMA my main checking account, but it sounds like a good backup.
One thing that humbles me deeply is to see that human genius has its limits while human stupidity does not. - Alexandre Dumas, fils
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anon_investor
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by anon_investor »

delamer wrote: Wed Sep 14, 2022 9:52 am
anon_investor wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 9:27 pm
delamer wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 8:39 pm
HomeStretch wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 6:16 pm
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 5:46 pm


I like this idea. My only Fidelity account at the moment is my workplace 403b.
Fidelity has a $100 bonus offer for depositing $50 into a CMA (see DofC post with bonus code and link, below). So you can get paid to try it out!
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/fidelity ... 0-deposit/
Do you know if the CMA allows for direct deposit?

Right now, the pension checks and the Social Security checks for both my husband and I are deposited into the same checking account (so four checks total). It has occurred to me that maybe we should have at least one of the four go into a different account in case of hacking or other temporary access issues.

Thanks.
The Fidelity CMA does allow for direct deposit. I switched over my direct deposit to my Fidelity CMA last month and received a pay check already (it actually showed up 1 day early). I also have automatic payment of my Wells Fargo mortgage direct debited from my Fidelity CMA and have paid many credit card bills from it as well via scheduled ACH payments (CCs issued by Chase, Citi, BoA, Barclays, Discover and Amex). I am very happy using my Fidelity CMA as my main checking account since my funds can all be held in SPRXX (currently earning 2.10%).
I appreciate the information.

I don’t want to make the CMA my main checking account, but it sounds like a good backup.
If can be used as a main checking account, so it definitely can be used as a back up. I am using it as my main checking account right now because the cash that sits there can earn a decent yield (2.10% by parking it in SPRXX).
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by Golf maniac »

I just left my Credit Union for Fidelity CMA and brokerage. We also got the credit card. It is a bit of a pain moving everything over but the CMA is paying 1.2% (my credit union paid 0.1%) and the brokerage money market is paying 2.1%. I use the brokerage account as the overdraft protection account for the CMA to keep minimal cash in the CMA. It has worked great so far and the ability to see all my accounts in one place has been helpful. I have had no issues with direct deposits or bills being paid from the CMA. We have a local Fidelity office near me but I don’t think I will need it very often.
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

As an update, I STILL cannot edit my bill pay :annoyed
I opened a CMA with Fidelity to ensure I can pay my bills
All my auto deposits and payments have continued normally
I can take cash out of the ATM or via teller.
Going today to figure out what's going on with the bill pay.
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JoeRetire
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by JoeRetire »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:28 pm People's United Bank, the bank we do our personal banking business with has undergone a merger with M&T Bank and we have faced numerous problems during this time. This is our only liquid emergency fund and our main checking/savings account, although there's other streams I could tap into in the event of a true emergency. Link to yesterday's new clip below. Prior to the merger, we were assured none of these problems would occur, but they have. Our bank(s) have merged twice so far and each time it seems we are on the losing end, but this time things are much worse.

It's been over two weeks and these are the ongoing problems:

We are unable to deposit checks.
We cannot perform many online functions.
I cannot edit bill pays.
Their customer service via phone is non existent.
Their brick & mortar customer service reps have no answers to our questions.
They have sent us several email notices that some scheduled bill pays on certain dates need to be rescheduled or they will not execute

I'd say the only positive part of this process is that my normally scheduled direct deposits and bill pays so far have not been impacted besides I cannot change my current bill pay amounts or dates.


With this said, is it wise to change banks immediately, or wait out this transition period?


Link to news clip:

https://www.wcax.com/2022/09/13/new-peo ... s-members/
We are a former People's United and now M&T bank customer.
We have had no problems at all.

For you, you need to decide if the hassle of changing banks is worthwhile, rather than just waiting for stability. I suspect I'd choose the latter.
Oh, noooooo! I'm so sorry, it's the moops! The correct answer is 'the moops'.
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

JoeRetire wrote: Thu Sep 22, 2022 7:08 am
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:28 pm People's United Bank, the bank we do our personal banking business with has undergone a merger with M&T Bank and we have faced numerous problems during this time. This is our only liquid emergency fund and our main checking/savings account, although there's other streams I could tap into in the event of a true emergency. Link to yesterday's new clip below. Prior to the merger, we were assured none of these problems would occur, but they have. Our bank(s) have merged twice so far and each time it seems we are on the losing end, but this time things are much worse.

It's been over two weeks and these are the ongoing problems:

We are unable to deposit checks.
We cannot perform many online functions.
I cannot edit bill pays.
Their customer service via phone is non existent.
Their brick & mortar customer service reps have no answers to our questions.
They have sent us several email notices that some scheduled bill pays on certain dates need to be rescheduled or they will not execute

I'd say the only positive part of this process is that my normally scheduled direct deposits and bill pays so far have not been impacted besides I cannot change my current bill pay amounts or dates.


With this said, is it wise to change banks immediately, or wait out this transition period?


Link to news clip:

https://www.wcax.com/2022/09/13/new-peo ... s-members/
We are a former People's United and now M&T bank customer.
We have had no problems at all.

For you, you need to decide if the hassle of changing banks is worthwhile, rather than just waiting for stability. I suspect I'd choose the latter.


I decided to open an account with Eastern Bank. The plan is to slowly transition all my funds to them. I feel I had to at this point.
-Bonus, Eastern Bank is offering $350 for $4,000 in direct deposits within 90 days.

The last straw was this... Last week I went to the People's down the street from me with my issue(s). They couldn't answer my questions, so they took my phone number, as they had to escalate the issues and/or call the customer service number, but they never called me back.
So I still cannot edit my bill pay amount.
The site also has issues for me. As I log in, go to "Accounts" then "View my rewards" and get error 404 – PAGE NOT FOUND

It had to be done.
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JoeRetire
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by JoeRetire »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 6:46 amThe plan is to slowly transition all my funds to them.
Why slowly?
Oh, noooooo! I'm so sorry, it's the moops! The correct answer is 'the moops'.
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by bradinsky »

JoeRetire wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 7:08 am
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 6:46 amThe plan is to slowly transition all my funds to them.
Why slowly?
+1 What are you waiting for? I doubt very much that they’ll beg you to stay.
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RobLyons
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by RobLyons »

JoeRetire wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 7:08 am
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 6:46 amThe plan is to slowly transition all my funds to them.
Why slowly?

I guess it's out of an abundance of caution, plus there is no rush, and lastly I'd like to use up most of my old checks before having to order new ones from the new bank. I haven't changed banks in 15+ years so I don't want switch fast and miss any auto transactions. Plus there's no harm having 2 accounts open simultaneously.
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Stinky
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Re: Bank merger not going smoothly (change banks?)

Post by Stinky »

RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 2:57 pm
JoeRetire wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 7:08 am
RobLyons wrote: Tue Sep 27, 2022 6:46 amThe plan is to slowly transition all my funds to them.
Why slowly?

I guess it's out of an abundance of caution, plus there is no rush, and lastly I'd like to use up most of my old checks before having to order new ones from the new bank. I haven't changed banks in 15+ years so I don't want switch fast and miss any auto transactions. Plus there's no harm having 2 accounts open simultaneously.
You could “switch fast”, as we did a year ago, but leave the old account open with a minimal balance to catch any auto transactions.

If you’re a Costco member, order new checks from Costco.com. Very inexpensive and high quality.
Retired life insurance company financial officer who sincerely believes that ”It’s a GREAT day to be alive!”
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