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How to Avoid Overdraft Fees
Keep an eye on your account balance. If you don't know how much money is in your checking account right now, then you are at risk of overdrawing your account. Many people think keeping a check register up to date is a hassle. Instead, make it a habit by entering each check or check card transaction as it is made. Set aside time when you get home to balance your account. Do this every time you spend, and soon it will be second nature.
Review your transactions on an ongoing basis. Use services such as Personal eBanking, goMobile, or ServiceCall, provided to you free of charge to help you keep up-to-date with your balance 24/7. Simply enroll for Personal eBanking or goMobile online at www.bankcnb.com or call Servicecall, our automated account information center - toll free at 1-866-224-7314 anytime, day or night.
Review your Statement. The best way to keep tabs on your checking account is to compare the monthly statement to your check register. Any discrepancies need to be taken care of immediately. If you have done a good job keeping track of your money there will never be a discrepancy – and that is the goal.
A Check Card is Not a Credit Card. Do not use your check card like you use your credit card. Your check card is like an electronic check and the funds are automatically deducted from your account.
Don't Forget ATM Withdrawals. One of the easiest ways to lose track of your money is to forget to record cash you withdraw from an ATM. It happens to people all the time – they forget to record the withdrawal and when the bank statement comes they find out they have $60 or $100 or whatever amount less than they thought they had. Always place your ATM receipt in a safe place. When you get home refer to the receipt to enter the withdrawal into your register.
Remember to Record Automatic Payments. Having your utility or insurance company automatically take payments out of your checking account can be very convenient. Overdrawing your account because you forgot to record an automatic payment is decidedly inconvenient.
Cushion your Checking Account. Having a little cushion in your account is probably the most effective way to stop overdraft fees when all else fails. To create a cushion, record a withdrawal in your register of $100 or whatever you want the cushion amount to be but leave the money there. Try to forget about the cushion and carry on as usual. If you get into trouble and accidentally spend more than your balance that $100 (or whatever amount) will be sitting there to take up the slack, and hopefully prevent an overdraft fee.
CNB offers overdraft services. Transfer arrangements from a savings account or personal line of credit allow customers to cover overdrafts using their own funds. Nominal transaction fees apply. Or, many times a bank will choose to pay an overdraft for a fee to avoid consumers having the inconvenience, embarrassment, fees and hassles from merchants, and other consequences of returned checks.
If you have questions or need help determining the best way to manage your CNB Bank accounts please call toll free, 1-800-492-3221, to visit with one of our knowledgeable bankers at your local CNB Bank. We're ready to help!