Do you remember actually going into the bank on a regular basis? Do you remember going into the bank and the manager knew your name? Do you remember when you knew all the bank tellers by name?
There was a time when the bank was a part of the community, where they made you feel welcome, where they actually wanted to see you come in. Today’s modern banking costs more money to regularly go into the bank and deposit money, because that kind of account is often an extra fee; nowadays they want you to use the machine or online only.
Banking fees have also gone up exponentially for everything, and the banks have a clever system of offering you overdraft protection, with a cost of between $25 to $40. In fact, you must opt out of that costly protection program otherwise it is automatic. Sometimes, using your overdraft is necessary though, especially if you live paycheck to paycheck; but paying $30 for a $15 check, really?
God forbid your account goes into the negative and you physically go into the bank to pay it because it seems part of banks’ training today, is to make you feel guilty for not having enough money to live.
· “So why did you let your account go negative?”
· “You really should avoid the fees”
As if you did it on purpose!
For the record, credit unions are operating just like regular banks now, so they are not exempt from this criticism.
Community is key because a community helps each other, they teach each other, and they look out for each other. If you are poor, often your community has entities in it that do not care about you and do not know you. Banks, you need to be part of the community you are supposed to be serving.
These are just thoughts, things observed by an educator.
Dr Flavius A B Akerele III