Would You Tolerate Monthly Fees For Online Banking?

Ken Tumin
  |     |   6,078 posts since 2009

The Consumer Reports Blog reviews a study on online banking and fees:

Mintel asked consumers how much they would be willing to pay for online banking services, such as paying bills electronically. A monthly fee of $5 is enough to scare off most - 93% - people surveyed.

With interest rates so low, monthly fees become even more irksome. It doesn't take big fees these days to eat up all of the earned interest.

  |     |   22 posts since 2011
Does anybody have insight as to whether it's cheaper for banks to process online bill payments vs. conventional paper checks? Consumer usage of their bank's online bill payment has never been strong nor is the growth remarkable; instead, they'd rather use their direct biller's website or mail a check. Yet as many banks eliminate free checking, many of the ones that continue to offer it are assessing fees for billpay.

I've read many times that online billpay is costly to banks (averages 40c per payment + the costs of subscribing to the service, nearly all of which is outsourced), yet they've discovered that those who adapt to it are likely to carry high deposit & credit balances.

In 2000, I specificity chose BankOne as my first bank as it offered free online banking and free online billpay, unheard of at the time. Of course, this was during the era of soaring bank fees and it didn't last long and I immediately left BankOne. (I cringe when I read that free checking has been a mainstay since the 1990s when in fact the late 1990s/early 2000s had among the most & highest fees of all time.)

But to answer the question, if banks started charging fees for online banking, I'd have to weigh the convenience & cost vs. the alternatives (not all bills can be paid online, and some creditors charge recovery fees).
  |     |   948 posts since 2010
Online banking saves the bank money -- why would I pay for that? They should pay ME to use it!
  |     |   16 posts since 2010
Right now, a lot of banks are starting to charge for paper statements.  If they charge for online banking also, they're going to lose a lot of customers.
  |     |   4 posts since 2011
As long as there is one bank in the country that doesn't charge monthly fees, any bank that charges fees will never see a dime from me!
  |     |   4,118 posts since 2010
Unfortunately this is the trend, especially among the mega-banks. First, one bank will charge a fee for a service, then if customers pay it, then the other banks follow suit. Their business model is one where the customer should feel lucky that the bank is there to take their funds and that a customer should be willing to pay fees for services the bank provides.
  |     |   244 posts since 2010
Racketeering crooks! @$#&^@%&

Over my dead body. I'll rather start mailing checks again (never did much anyway back in the days) and support the USPS and make it more expensive for banks by them having to handle more checks;-p

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