College Student Learns How Overdrafts Work

Forgive me, I’m a bit emotional over this. I’m raging mad and sad and disappointed because today Wells Fargo just lost my business. Yeah, I screwed up in this, but I’m a poor college student, and I thought I fixed it before it was a problem…

So, Saturday night I made two Paypal purchases. When I looked at my bank account, I noticed that I didn’t have enough to cover them, so I transferred enough to cover both purchases and the overdraft fee from my ING Direct account. Monday rolls around, my Paypal purchases come through, and my transfer shows up as pending. Okay, I thought, so I’ve got that covered, cool. Tuesday morning rolls around and my deposit has posted and I’m in the green, with enough to cover the inevitable overdraft fee. Then, Tuesday night I decided to check in on my account. TWO overdraft fees has posted, and I’m deep in the red. Not to mention I had bought a stamp today that puts me deeper in the red, though not by much. So I call Wells Fargo, explain my situation and confusion, and ask to speak to the manager. I’m put on hold, the music plays for a little while, then stops. I sit for another five minutes with no reaction from the phone, so I hang up and try again. I am transferred to the manager, but this time I don’t even get the music, it just cuts off. The third time I finally get through to a manager, who, after I explained the situation, informs me that, yes, every item will be subject to an overdraft fee. This means I might get another overdraft fee from having bought the stamp today.

I know this is mostly my own fault, but after about ten minutes on the phone I couldn’t even get her to reverse one of the fees because it “wasn’t a bank error.” I just think it’s a little unfair that I’m looking now at potentially over $100 in overdraft fees for something I thought I had corrected. Consumerist, I put this out as a warning. I used to love Wells Fargo, but now… the magic is gone. I have to move on. Probably to a Student Credit Union- I’ve heard good things about them.



In the final tally, deductions are taken out immediately. So if at any point there wasn’t enough money to cover the charge, there’s going to be an overdraft. Technically, you’re screwed, but if you call the Wells Fargo 1800 number and say please, they might show mercy and refund one of the overdrafts. Switching to a credit union is a good idea anyway, but don’t expect them to be more lenient on the issue of how quickly items are debited, though they might be more sympathetic when you overdraft again.