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Santander charges - MSE newbie!

This is my first post here and I hope that someone can offer some advice. I've held a couple of accounts with Abbey/ Santander for a fair few years. They were both very low interest accounts, one being used solely for my child benefit and tax credits to be paid into.

Last year, as counter cheques were being withdrawn for smaller amounts, I was advised to close one of the accounts and open a current account, with a cheque book and debit card, but no overdraft as such small amounts were being paid in. This I duely did and it has made things much easier paying for things for my children - class fees, clothes, shoes etc, etc.

I have just received my latest statement and to my horror I went 89p overdrawn last month (through my own miscalculation admittedly) resulting in £60 of bank charges which are going to be deducted from my account on 14th Sept - £25.00 unarranged overdraft monthly fee and a £35.00 paid item fee payment as I had written a cheque and this is what put me overdrawn.

I haven't spoken to Santander yet, but I am absolutely flabbergasted by the amount of charges that have been applied for just 89P. I think I am just so angry as this money is for my children and yet I'm going to have to pay a big chunk of it to Santander. We haven't got a huge amount of spare cash, and whilst paying these charges won't put me overdrawn again, I don't want to have to for the sake of 89P!

I've had accounts with Abbey for 20+ years and I chose to open my 3 children's saving accounts with them too because of my positive experiences with them. Now I'm ready to close all 5 accounts with immediate effect.

Before I get on the phone to them and start ranting - what should my next course of action be / which is the best way to go about trying to recoup some or all of this money??

Many thanks
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Replies

  • dunstonhdunstonh Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    Forumite
    Before I get on the phone to them and start ranting - what should my next course of action be / which is the best way to go about trying to recoup some or all of this money??

    Before you get ranting, you should ask them nicely to refund. Banks nearly always refund on first error. If you go in ranting from the start, you may just talk yourself out of a refund.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • Premier_2Premier_2 Forumite
    15.1K Posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    maddymoo wrote: »
    ...I've held a couple of accounts with Abbey/ Santander for a fair few years. They were both very low interest accounts, ...

    Last year, ... I was advised to close one of the accounts and open a current account, with a cheque book and debit card, ...

    What type of current account did you actually open?

    Whilst the interest may have been particularly low on the original accounts at present (BoE rate is only 0.5%), I think the interest on any current account will be non-existent unless you are paying in £1k+ per month.
    "Now to trolling as a concept. .... Personally, I've always found it a little sad that people choose to spend such a large proportion of their lives in this way but they do, and we have to deal with it." - MSE Forum Manager 6th July 2010
  • Thank you for your replies.

    I phoned Santander to discuss the charges and was automatically put through to an overseas call centre. Anyway - they have agreed to cancel the larger of the 2 charges (£35) and told me to make sure that my account was kept in order as no further charges would be refunded!

    I am going to start looking for new accounts to open for myself and my children as after nearly 30 years of banking with Abbey + Santander I am really disappointed with their customer service.
  • oh i feel your pain! from the moment i open a joint account with abbey ive had nothing but trouble! cards not arriving, 15, yes 15 pin numbers, and many many online banking pin numbers that didnt work. oh and 3 cheque books! i get charges what seems to be every month because pin numbers that are given for online banking work one day, then not the next so im not able to transfer money. so frustrated with them ive set up a joint account with nationwide instead and closed the account-the best thing ive done all year! :)
    £12k in 2020 #=
    1% challenge #61 £142= 81% £10 a day = £460/£500

    **MONEY MAKES ME HAPPY**
  • zpppzppp Forumite
    2.5K Posts
    maddymoo wrote: »
    Thank you for your replies.

    I phoned Santander to discuss the charges and was automatically put through to an overseas call centre. Anyway - they have agreed to cancel the larger of the 2 charges (£35) and told me to make sure that my account was kept in order as no further charges would be refunded!

    I am going to start looking for new accounts to open for myself and my children as after nearly 30 years of banking with Abbey + Santander I am really disappointed with their customer service.

    The problem is that if you move to another bank, they may not be as sympathetic and refund a single charge. IMO they have given you more than half back, which is alot more than some people get.
    Best Regards

    zppp :)

  • If this is the first time in 20 years that you have incurred such charges, I too would be very disappointed that they felt unable to give you a full "goodwill" refund.

    I can't say I'm surprised. My sister had a terrible time trying to get back over £20,000 fraudulently taken from her Abbey account. It was taken in 25 separate items in one day - the day after the £20,000 was put into her account by Abbey as part of a loan drawdown. (hmmmm, smells a bit like an inside job ???)

    It took both of us 6 months, 6 letters, forms they sent out and never arrived, various spreadsheets calculating our time and costs etc before the money was refunded. They offered her £300 compo.

    I'd have another go at getting the rest of the charge back -you've got nothing to lose. Good luck.


    Linda
  • zppp wrote: »
    The problem is that if you move to another bank, they may not be as sympathetic and refund a single charge. IMO they have given you more than half back, which is alot more than some people get.

    I don't want them to be sympathetic - I would like them to look after my money and offer me the best service that they can. Instead - I'm another one of the 245,000 customers who have been subject to poor service and have complained about the service that they have received from Santander in the last 6 months.

    In nearly 30 years of banking with Abbey/Santander (my account opened by my parents when at school, the account that I paid my Saturday job wages into etc, etc) I have never been overdrawn before. I accept that I shouldn't have gone overdrawn, but for the sake of 89p can you honestly justify charges of £60. What I really resent is being told by somebody 1000s of miles away to keep my account in order as I won't be refunded any future charges. If they had my passbooks in front of them from the last few years they would be able to know that I have never, ever been overdrawn before and as I'm planning on closing the account - I won't ever be overdrawn again!

    When I opened the account, I too had problems with pin numbers - 2 sets of numbers arriving and neither set working. I haven't ever used online banking because I can't login - it's been a complete waste of time.

    If anyone can recommend the best accounts for my children (aged 8,6 and 4) to pay their pocket money into, and an account for me to get their child benefit and tax credits paid into, with cheque book and debit card access, I'd be very grateful :)
  • Hi Maddymoo,

    My sister had completely different probs with Abbey but their "customer service" was appalling. In the end she moved to Nat West and so far (2 years) is very happy with them. She really likes their on-line banking, plus the fact that they have UK call centres staffed with people who (so far) seem to know what they are doing.

    My brother opened accounts with Nat West for his 3 children 7 years ago when they were 9, 11 and 13 for their pocket money, birthday money etc (to encourage them to save !) and they have always been happy with them and are sticking with them now they are working.
  • Premier_2Premier_2 Forumite
    15.1K Posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    maddymoo wrote: »
    I don't want them to be sympathetic - I would like them to look after my money and offer me the best service that they can....

    They did look after your money.

    Unfortunately, for whatever reason, you were not so careful and attempted to spend money you didn't have.

    That resulted in extra work for the bank who charged you their published price for that extra service.
    "Now to trolling as a concept. .... Personally, I've always found it a little sad that people choose to spend such a large proportion of their lives in this way but they do, and we have to deal with it." - MSE Forum Manager 6th July 2010
  • Premier wrote: »
    They did look after your money.

    Unfortunately, for whatever reason, you were not so careful and attempted to spend money you didn't have.

    That resulted in extra work for the bank who charged you their published price for that extra service.

    extra work for the bank?

    are you serious?

    £60 charges to generate an automated letter. I think the OPs point is that it isn't really fair treatment to a longstanding and loyal customer

    Santander/Abbey are a disgraceful shower of moneygrabbing f*ckwits who care nothing for customers, only the bottom line

    (i feel better now) :D
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