Why You Better Read Your Checking Account Fine Print: A $4.95 Fee To NOT Overdraw Your Account?

This was a new one on me so I needed to post about it (from GoBankingRates):

This is a service Bank of America rolled out this year with its SafeBalance account, a product that promises account holders won’t have to pay overdraft charges — just a $4.95 monthly fee. Any time you try to spend more than the balance in your account, your transaction is declined.  Of course, this is an option that’s technically available to anyone, regardless of fee. The Federal Reserve ruled in 2010 that consumers have to opt-in to overdraft protection in order to be charged, otherwise their cards should be rejected.

Yes, you read this correctly.  Pay a $4.95 monthly fee to get an account that won’t allow you to overdraw your account when such a feature is available to anyone …for free.  

The article also includes other fees to watch out for including reordered overdraft fees, early account closure fees and returned mail fees.

Educate your students to be more savvy about checking fees, check out the Next Gen Personal Finance lesson here.