While catching up on snail mail after getting back from Thanksgiving, I found a letter from Chase Bank telling me that my Chase Fee Extra Checking account (formerly Washington Mutual Free Checking) will now be called Chase Total Checking as of February 8, 2011. Along with the new name comes – you guessed it! – a new $10 to $12 monthly service fee* unless I meet at least one of the following criteria each statement period:
- At least one single direct deposit of $500 or more,
- A minimum daily balance of $1,500 or more,
- An average balance of $5,000 across all Chase deposit accounts (checking, savings, CDs) and/or investment accounts with Chase Investment Services Corp,
- Pay $25 or more in qualifying account fees (not including this monthly service fee)
Back in April 2009, I reported that Chase was converting over WaMu Free Checking accounts and was keeping the important no monthly fees and no minimum balance feature. Well, that lasted about a year and a half.
I haven’t been using my Chase checking account very much recently, especially since their savings account basically pays no interest at all. As it stands, I’ll be subject to the $10 monthly fee. I don’t think I want the hassle of making online ACH transfers back and forth to simulate a direct deposit each month, so I’ll probably end up closing the account. WaMu was my primary bank for a few years, but I’ve learned not to get too attached to any single financial institution.
* According to the Terms & Conditions booklet, the monthly service fee is $10 for accounts opened in California, Oregon, or Washington. Otherwise, $12.
By Jonathan Ping | Banking | 12/1/10, 6:41pm