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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Guy
    • By MSE Guy 19th May 09, 11:36 AM
    • 1,628Posts
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    MSE Guy
    Has Halifax broken its student promise?
    • #1
    • 19th May 09, 11:36 AM
    Has Halifax broken its student promise? 19th May 09 at 11:36 AM
    Halifax has told a student, in documents seen by MSE, the maximum overdraft allowed in year one of studies is 1,750.

    However, the bank’s marketing material clearly states a maximum 3,000, if you meet its credit criteria.

    We want to know how widespread this problem is so please report any similar experiences below.

    For full info read the news story:


    Last edited by MSE Guy; 19-05-2009 at 2:16 PM.
Page 1
  • rb10
    • #2
    • 19th May 09, 3:03 PM
    • #2
    • 19th May 09, 3:03 PM
    What a complete nonsense post.

    Guy, you will see from the Halifax web site and anything else advertising the account, that it says

    An interest-free overdraft of up to 3,000
    So that means that they will give out overdrafts of anything between 0 and 3000. There will obviously be many factors influencing their decision, one of which can surely quite fairly be the year of the course.

    In the November of my first year at uni, I asked for an overdraft increase, and was told that until they have seen the second instalment of a student loan or grant, the maximum is 1750 (i.e. it can rise from January).

    But in the case of the one student who's example you give, a provocative title such as the one you have given for this thread isn't really called for, in my opinion, as we know nothing about this particular student's history with the bank.

    I am sure I have seen a post on here sometime about someone who did get the maximum of 3000 in their first year, I will try to find it.

    But seeing as the overdraft that they offer is so much larger than other banks' overdrafts, it would surely be seen as a fair and sensible thing to do to be really careful who they give them to. And just because the person who contacted you has been a customer at Halifax for 12 years does not mean that they have been a good customer.
  • diddlydum
    • #3
    • 19th May 09, 3:18 PM
    • #3
    • 19th May 09, 3:18 PM
    You totally miss the point, though. If they'd said 'you can have 3000 if you meet our criteria, but you don't, sod off' then there's nothing wrong with that. The point is that he was told that he couldn't have more than 1750 in his first year, despite advertising stating the contrary.

    I'd be very interested to see if it's false advertising, I have to say it really wouldn't surprise me. I know a lot of students who have difficulty even opening student accounts, let alone getting overdrafts, and it really does stink.
    • Lokolo
    • By Lokolo 19th May 09, 3:25 PM
    • 20,102 Posts
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    Lokolo
    • #4
    • 19th May 09, 3:25 PM
    • #4
    • 19th May 09, 3:25 PM
    You totally miss the point, though. If they'd said 'you can have 3000 if you meet our criteria, but you don't, sod off' then there's nothing wrong with that. The point is that he was told that he couldn't have more than 1750 in his first year, despite advertising stating the contrary.

    I'd be very interested to see if it's false advertising, I have to say it really wouldn't surprise me. I know a lot of students who have difficulty even opening student accounts, let alone getting overdrafts, and it really does stink.
    Originally posted by diddlydum
    If you read the article it says there are 1st year students on 3,000 overdraft. God knows why. But there are, so how aren't they keeping their promise?

    A Halifax spokesman says the letter to Mark was incorrect, adding: "I can confirm the interest-free overdraft on our student current account is for up to 3,000, even in the first year."
    He says some first-year students have a 3,000 limit but would not confirm how many.
  • rb10
    • #5
    • 19th May 09, 3:26 PM
    • #5
    • 19th May 09, 3:26 PM
    You totally miss the point, though. If they'd said 'you can have 3000 if you meet our criteria, but you don't, sod off' then there's nothing wrong with that. The point is that he was told that he couldn't have more than 1750 in his first year, despite advertising stating the contrary.
    Originally posted by diddlydum
    Yes, and if you read the MSE 'news story' you'll see that it was just a mistake that they said that 1750 is the first year limit:

    A Halifax spokesman says the letter to Mark was incorrect, adding: "I can confirm the interest-free overdraft on our student current account is for up to 3,000, even in the first year."
    Seems to kind of clinch the argument, doesn't it.

    This really turns the whole 'news story' into saying:

    Halifax has sent out a letter which had an error in it to one of their customers.
    • Lokolo
    • By Lokolo 19th May 09, 3:27 PM
    • 20,102 Posts
    • 15,243 Thanks
    Lokolo
    • #6
    • 19th May 09, 3:27 PM
    • #6
    • 19th May 09, 3:27 PM
    Yes, and if you read the MSE 'news story' you'll see that it was just a mistake that they said that 1750 is the first year limit:



    Seems to kind of clinch the argument, doesn't it.

    This really turns the whole 'news story' into saying:

    Halifax has sent out a letter which had an error in it to one of their customers.
    Originally posted by rb10
    To be honest I suspect the letter was directly aimed at him rather than a generic one.

    "We don't believe you should be allowed more than a 1750 overdraft in your first year" -> now is being put as -> Halifax don't give out more than 1750 in 1st year.
  • MrsManda
    • #7
    • 19th May 09, 3:28 PM
    • #7
    • 19th May 09, 3:28 PM
    What a complete nonsense post.
    Guy, you will see from the Halifax web site and anything else advertising the account, that it says An interest-free overdraft of up to 3,000
    So that means that they will give out overdrafts of anything between 0 and 3000.
    Originally posted by rb10
    I think the point of Guy's post is that the document he's referring to doesn't say that that particular student can only get 1750 in his first year. It says that the maximum for anyone is 1750 in their first year. Therefore this is contray to marketing saying that the OD could be upto 3000.

    On the Halifax student bank account description on their website it doesn't seem to say anywhere that it is upto 3000 from the first year, it just says that the OD is upto 3000 for duration of your course upto 5 years plus one graduate year. Therefore even if there is a limit on this for first years Halifax is still not breaking any promises.
    Last edited by MrsManda; 19-05-2009 at 3:33 PM. Reason: further information after reading posts made since
  • rb10
    • #8
    • 19th May 09, 3:36 PM
    • #8
    • 19th May 09, 3:36 PM
    I think the point of Guy's post is that the document he's referring to doesn't say that that particular student can only get 1750 in his first year. It says that the maximum for anyone is 1750 in their first year. Therefore this is contray to marketing saying that the OD could be upto 3000.
    Originally posted by MrsManda
    But Halifax have since told MSE that the document he refers to was wrong, so it makes that point irrelevant.
    • The One Who
    • By The One Who 19th May 09, 4:14 PM
    • 2,368 Posts
    • 2,924 Thanks
    The One Who
    • #9
    • 19th May 09, 4:14 PM
    • #9
    • 19th May 09, 4:14 PM
    I am pretty sure it is in the small-print that not all accounts will get the maximum overdraft amount, especially not in the first year of being a student. It's up to a bank to say whether they'll increase an overdraft or not, I certainly would increase the limit before the second loan installment has come through.
  • rb10
    I am pretty sure it is in the small-print that not all accounts will get the maximum overdraft amount, especially not in the first year of being a student.
    Originally posted by The One Who
    It's not just in the small print, it's on their main student account web page:

    An important note...
    The amount of overdraft you get depends on your personal circumstances and whether you make regular payments into the account. You need to be aware that you may not get the full 3,000 overdraft. Halifax current accounts and services are offered subject to status. Overdrafts are repayable on demand.
  • mactoptips
    Halifax clearly state the maximum overdraft facility on the account is 3000 at all times, i was told this upon setting up my account this year and was the main reason i opened the account with halifax, however i was only granted a 1000 overdraft and was told i could increase this to the 3000 when needed and my loan came into the account! However when funds ran low even after the loan came in, i rang halifax who informed me the maximum the overdraft could be increased to in the first year was 1750 far short of the 3000 stated in the adverts and the figure that was sold to me! I believe this is gross misrepresentation and although the bank states you may not get the full 3000 i do not believe it is possible to get 3000 as staff of the bank clearly stated when i rang it was not possible to go over 1750 in the first year as their system would not let them, suggesting no student actually gets the 3000 in the first year!
    Last edited by mactoptips; 22-05-2009 at 10:39 AM.
    • someone
    • By someone 20th May 09, 9:20 PM
    • 638 Posts
    • 277 Thanks
    someone
    I've been told that the underwriters will only let students have 1750 in the first year (asked for an extention between my 1st and 2nd year, they were still classing me as a first year student)
  • adesai
    I'm a fourth year student (six year course) and opened up a Halifax bank account in October last year. Since then I've been making regular 200.00 payments per week into the account (and pay around 800.00 pounds per month back out of it into my hsbc current account).

    As I finished my last exam yesterday and had some time on my hands I called Halifax today (see saynoto0870.com for landline). I explained the end of the year was approaching and my final loan instalment had been rec'd and I wanted to increase my overdraft to 3000.00 to tie me over for the summer. I was told it was not at all possible to increase my overdraft for reasons unknown to the operator. She spoke to her manager who called the underwriters who said the criteria were:
    (1) no adverse credit rating (I have none)
    (2) regular payment into account (see above)
    (3) length of time the account has been open (I.e as opposed to year of study)

    She told me in no uncertain terms that If I called again in another six months once the account had been open for a year I would be entitled to increase my overdraft again (she would not disclose the amount).

    Three issues
    The first is that on the first time of asking I wasn't entitled to increase my overdraft at all - this was done at the discretion of the "manager" from 1000 to 1750.

    The second is that while others have suggested Halifax place limits based on year of study this has not been the case for me. Rather, the length of time I have had the account for. This is not consistent with the customer in the article who had held a Halifax account for 12 years.

    Finally, the girl on the phone seemed nice but was genuinely clueless and it seemed, powerless too. Every major company I ring the initial operator has a redundant function.
  • ceryni87
    I am a 3rd and final year student and I have had my halifax account since just before i started university. I had some money problems eariler this year and my overdraft limit at the time was 1500, they would not let me extend it to over 2000, which was really helpful of them. They wouldn't give me a reason, they just said no. Several of my friends have also tried to go beyond 2000 and been given a flat refusal.
  • Dwayne Quest
    I am 4 weeks away from the end of my second year. My overdraft limit is at 1500 and my balance is just over 800. All of the money that is loaned/granted to me goes directly into this account. I have not once gone over the agreed overdraft limit. I just phoned Halifax to request it to go to the maximum of 3000 but they said no, because I do not have enough money in my account. I find that quite strange and do believe that Halifax do not really give out the 3000 overdrafts. I do not know anyone who has managed to get the maximum amount. Also, the man on the phone said that the maximum overdraft he can give me is 1000 and that he is unsure of why I am on 1500. Seems like bit of a joke to me!
    Last edited by Dwayne Quest; 27-05-2009 at 2:40 PM.
  • fluffycustard
    Watch out now!!
    All of the money that is loaned/granted to me goes directly into this account. I have not once gone over the agreed overdraft limit. I just phoned Halifax to request it to go to the maximum of 3000 but they said no, because I do not have enough money in my account.
    Originally posted by Dwayne Quest
    I'm a second year student, and back in April, phoned to see if I could increase my 1000 od limit as I had some impending unexpected bills that were going to take me a little over the limit. They declined to extend it on the phone, and subsequently completely canceled my overdraft. As I was in the middle of preparing for exams and clinical placement, as well as having a personal crisis, I did not check my account until today, and see that they have been charging me 20 a pop penalty fees as I now have no overdraft.
    So, if you just rung and they declined your od increase, make sure you check that they havent infact cancelled the whole thing!!!!!.
    Needless to say, I will be calling into my local branch tomorrow for a little chat.
    Rich
  • Sarah Fuller
    Halifax student account- don't expect an overdraft of more than 1000.
    I'm coming to the end of my 2nd year in Medschool and have been with Halifax for two years now. I also have a term time job in which i'm contracted to work 60 hours month, earning about 500 a month. So, I have regular student loan payments plus monthy earnings going into my account. I do have a credit card which is just under 1000 in debt, but I have no outstanding payments, have an ok credit rating and regular payments going in. Despite this, everytime I ask for an increase in my overdraft I'm turned down. I will need the overdraft because I will have to quit my job for the clinical years. I currently have a 1000 overdraft limit.

    I've been given three different reasons on three different occasions:
    1. "You need to have the account open with us for more than a year" - ok fair enough, loyalty etc...(although it doesn't say that it terms and conditions)
    2. Try again 6 months later "You need to have more money in your account" - seems slightly counter intuitive...the reason I wanted an increase at this time was because I was struggling - so I thought, fine, I'll wait until I have at least 1000 +.
    3. Try again 6 months later: "The credit crunch has hit us all hard and so our critera for increasing overdrafts has become much stricter" - Halifax actually can't afford to give me an overdraft! To soften the blow they decided to offer me a credit card and insurance!

    I have previously been offered credit cards, personal loans and insurance from Halifax. Slightly irresponsible of Halifax?

    It is incredibly difficult to get a overdraft larger than 1000 from halifax and I would not advise anyone to join this bank based on their attractive overdraft facilities. They are no different to any other bank in this respect. If you do get it (post credit crunch that is) then you're very lucky!
  • Dwayne Quest
    Fluffy Custard, that is terrible! I have just checked my account and they have not cancelled the overdraft that I had applied for (3000). I had to apply for it as I received a letter from them telling me that my overdraft was going to expire. I'm not sure what that is about?

    Their letter said:

    "Thank you for your recent application for an overdraft of 3,000.Unfortunately, having considered your application, it will not be possible to offer you an overdraft at this time.This decision has been based on a review of your finances . If you want to discuss this decision, please contact your local branch "

    Plus a bit more.

    I get 3500ish of student loan into my account, plus about 6000 of grants and 2000 from my part time job (a year). They refuse to give me a larger overdraft even though I very rarely go into it, put over 10k a year into it and have been with them for almost 2 years. If I can't get it then I don't know who can. Don't trust them!

    (I have also had a mobile phone contract for about 4 years, never missing a payment. I have one credit card, which I have also never missed a payment on. I checked my credit report on Experian and it seems fine).

    I have applied for a co-op account as it has the highest overdraft of any of the other banks.
    Last edited by Dwayne Quest; 06-06-2009 at 2:43 PM.
    • jase951
    • By jase951 6th Jun 09, 8:29 PM
    • 14 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    jase951
    I've been told that the underwriters will only let students have 1750 in the first year (asked for an extention between my 1st and 2nd year, they were still classing me as a first year student)
    Originally posted by someone
    Ditto this. That's the impression I got from the last conversation with them over the phone. I've got 1750 at the moment they would not let me increase it - first year.
  • rb10
    I'm coming to the end of my 2nd year in Medschool and have been with Halifax for two years now. I also have a term time job in which i'm contracted to work 60 hours month, earning about 500 a month. So, I have regular student loan payments plus monthy earnings going into my account. I do have a credit card which is just under 1000 in debt, but I have no outstanding payments, have an ok credit rating and regular payments going in. Despite this, everytime I ask for an increase in my overdraft I'm turned down. I will need the overdraft because I will have to quit my job for the clinical years. I currently have a 1000 overdraft limit.
    Originally posted by Sarah Fuller
    This could be the key reason - as a student, you only have a limited source of income, so if you owe 1k on a credit card, that's a large amount of debt that you already have.
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