I recently had to open a checking account at a new bank and I told them I wanted the no frills option. This bank charges for EVERYTHING and the minimum charge was $4 a month.

One of the ways to avoid charges was to have a minimum balance in the account but the balances were very high (at least $1000) and since this was non interest bearing account it did not make financial sense (cents!!!!) for me to keep a large balance in this account.

There were a number of other  things to choose from, including the option to go on a pay per transaction basis, which is what I chose. This would limit me to $1 per transaction for the month and since I will only be accessing that account to pay one credit card I would only get charged $1 per month.

I got the account opened and promptly put it out of my mind since I would not be needing it any time soon. I logged in to Mint a few days later and noticed that there had been a $2.50 charge to my account and the description read ‘Check fee’. I do NOT write checks, had not ordered a check book and had not even opened the slip with the PIN for the debit card so I immediately got annoyed by this charge.

I emailed the bank and was told that a Check Fee had been added ‘for my convenience’ so that I would get copies of checks that I had written when my statement came in.

In this age of electronic banking where I do not write checks and not only have online access to my account but also have it linked to Mint, why would I need copies of checks (for an account where I did not even order a check book)?

I told the rep that I did not request or need that ‘convenience’ and would like to have it removed.  The fee was reversed soon after but it just showed me that I need to monitor my accounts even though I have things set up on auto pilot because the bank can choose to ‘help’ me and make things more ‘convenient’ for me any time they choose and charge me a fee to boot!!!!