Category Archives: Banking

Perfect But Salty

I started this week just a wee bit off. I sat down with a fresh cup of black coffee, zipped through the Monday edition of Newsday, read Amy, picked up a pen and proceeded to ink in the answers to the Monday crossword puzzle. The clues were easy at first, as they should be on Monday.

I do my puzzles in ink. I go through the hints fast and in order. First across, then down. Occasionally I’ll lightly ink in the letters but mostly I just make a mess of it all. But that’s okay — tomorrow is another day, another puzzle. But this week, this Monday — for the first time since I started doing the puzzles (again) — I couldn’t finish it. My laptop was on the table next to me, fully charged. I could look up the answers. yes, the thought crossed my mind. But it was Monday. I usually don’t get desperate til Wednesday or Thursday.

Okay, relax, just a bad day. But the same thing happened on Tuesday. I couldn’t finish that one either. And I couldn’t bring myself to peek at the answers online.

It was Monday when I received the letter from Bank of America.

Back in June/July I had an issue with Bank of America which I wrote about in my blog. STRIKE ONE!

So without going into much detail at the moment — because I really don’t have the energy — I will say that Drew’s bank card was stolen during a business trip. Bank of America Fraud Department called me and brought it to my attention — suspicious activity, they said. I had already noticed it online. We both spoke with a rep on the phone and also filed a claim saying that we are both authorized users and neither of us authorized the withdrawal of money from our account. Sounds pretty clear to me?

Here’s the response we got not even 2 weeks later:

After concluding a thorough investigation of the above referenced claim, it has been determined that no error has occurred in this instance. Our records show the transaction activity in question was authorized and posted, or billed, correctly to  your account. Blah, blah, blah.

Bank of America appreciates your business and values you as a customer .  .  .  more blah . . .”

Thorough investigation? When I called the bank and repeated what I thought were major details the representative said, “I’m adding these details to your inquiry.”

What do you mean — you’re adding it? What exactly were they investigating?

None of this is in the initial report, the case is reopened and they will use this information to reevaluate it,” he answers. Sounds like Drew and I wasted a lot of phone time. STRIKE TWO!

I should hear from them by the end of next week.  The bank had to send me another sheet with additional claims on it. I wasn’t surprised to see that the information on it was incorrect. Surprised? not really. STRIKE  . . . !

Can anyone recommend a bank? I’m thinking Capital One . . . Citibank . . . ?????

And here it is Friday, my eyes are itchy and my nose is drippy! Hey, wait a minute . . . my hip feels fine and my leg doesn’t ache today. (Maybe I should let a stupid puzzle rule my life.)

You did cook these perfect you know,” says my drew this Friday morning as the perfectly runny (cage free) yolk drips down his cute chinny-chin-chin, “but they are a little salty.” Every time I crack an egg into a hot pan I pray  . . . pray that the egg will be perfect! This morning I decided to add the salt and fresh pepper after the eggs were on the plate instead of while they are cooking. What I learned: Salt early, pepper after.

Perfect but salty. Go figure!?

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Filed under Baby boomer, Banking, Everyday Woman, Long Island Living, Real life

What is your case number? Oh, and by the way, we are all very sorry.

Still I am not happy with Bank of America. If I get the letter tomorrow I’ll be sure and report back and I will also keep the executive customer relations number handy and use that any time I have a reason to call. Lucky them.”
(Quote from Thursday’s post.)

I am reporting back — a day late but the story is the same.

I did receive the FedEx letter on Friday. I also received the letter that I was told was mailed on June 24th which, according to my crazy thinking, was the original of the correct fax I received the week before. Well, the letter I received in the USPS mail was WRONG, VERY WRONG! It was a copy of another fax I received that was WRONG, VERY WRONG!

No worries, I have the FedEx letter that was sent from the CEO Customer Relations office. I open it, great this is what just what we need. I call Drew to tell him and that’s when I noticed it — The account number was wrong on one of my accounts. I quickly checked my accounts online to be sure . . . maybe all the other letters and faxes were wrong but nope, not the case.

Speaking of cases — Can you believe this? I have a case number at Bank of America because I am unable to get a correct copy of the reference letter I requested on June 6th. So, once again, I called. At least when you call the Executive Customer Relations office you don’t have to press a million numbers to get to anyone — and right now that is the only good thing.

I tell the Executive Rep what happened. She is so sorry and she says she is, as we speak, contacting the person who sent the letter. “Okay, she just responded and she is very sorry. She has corrected it. I could have her call you to discuss the best way to get the letter to you,” says the rep. “FedEx it. I want it Tuesday and have her call me and give me the tracking number asap. Tell her to make sure to check off  “No signature required,” I respond, “She can leave the number on my answering machine.” “Okay, well sometimes Federal Express will not leave the package if they think . . . ” she rambles. I cut her off, “No signature required, they will leave it. I need it and I’m not sitting home waiting for it.

I had to call back for the tracking number and that’s when I asked, “So whatever happened to my original request on June 6th? It was processed on June 11th. Where is it?” Everybody wants to make it right and everybody is sorry but nobody seems to care what went wrong. I’d like to know why this has become such a mess. Faxes that were sent from B of A to my local branch and never received . . . letters that were requested and never received . . . all with the wrong information.

Everybody’s sorry but they can’t be that sorry . . . otherwise that letter would be in my hand already — (next day by noon.) As it is, it’s promised by Tuesday at 3:00 pm. Right now it is sitting at the local FedEx Facility in Hicksville (with note: Package not due for delivery) — a mere 15 minutes away! (Can I get someone to read it to me?) I should have insisted on a Saturday delivery. Silly me I thought they would just send it overnight to get it to me asap.

The executive rep I spoke with said that she is contacting the person who actually sent out my original reference letter (requested on June 6th) to see what address it was sent to. What address it was sent to? Is she kidding? “What do you mean what address? It’s my address listed on my account!” 

Ahhhh, she said she would get back to me on this. And, yes, she was very sorry. I went to bed at 2 in the morning last night. No phone call!

Still I am not happy with Bank of America.

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Maybe I should have a category called Bank of America

Didn’t receive the letter from Bank of America so I went to consumerist.com and found some names (needs to be updated.) Ended up calling the Executive Customer Service number. I didn’t have to press a million buttons and I reached a live person right away.

The rep said she understood why I was so upset and would look into it but the first thing “we have to do is get you the reference note.” So she is sending it Fedex overnight. I have a tracking number and I think as soon as I finish this I will check it to see if it is real.

Still I am not happy with Bank of America. If I get the letter tomorrow I’ll be sure and report back and I will also keep the executive customer relations number handy and use that any time I have a reason to call. Lucky them.

I have a Chase credit card and twice over the many years that I’ve had it I didn’t receive a bill. Their customer service is totally useless. They refused to credit the late charge and even went as far as saying, “You pay your bill on time and we don’t make any money off of you. I can’t reverse the late charge.” Yes, it’s true someone really said that to me but first I was told that it wasn’t their problem I should take it up with the post office. I had to call the executive office to get the charge taken off. Actually I called to let them know why I didn’t want to do business with Chase Bank and the person I spoke with at the executive office was not happy and immediately reversed charges and apologized. I still have the card but I don’t use it anymore. I should probably cancel it.

Anybody have a bank they like doing business with? I’m open for suggestions!

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A Big Head and Other Fine Highlights of the Day

I called Drew yesterday morning. I was in the city and was hoping to catch him before he left for work. I called him at home with my iphone. Click, click, click, click . . . I put in my secret password and made the call. The answering machine picked up. I didn’t leave a message.

Took a quick walk on the High Line with Hannah. It was way too hot. Ended up sitting in a coffeehouse drinking iced tea to cool off. Hannah had an iced cappuccino and an arugula salad. Met Pam and Jan there. Jan wanted to see the big head in Madison Square Park so we took a walk over to the east side.

A big head, a comfy bed, a cute pup -- a fine time was had by us.

It was a big head . . . a really big white head — in the middle of the park. Took a cab to Pam and Jan’s room on Restaurant Row — The French Quarter. Cute room, tiny, but most importantly it was air-conditioned. Hot day. We told Rachel to meet us at the restaurant at 5:00. Phone call at 4:00: A shrieking Rachel, “I’m locked out of my apartment. I wanted to take a quick nap before dinner.” “Where are your keys?” says me. “Probably on the kitchen counter.” Ahh, a Rachel moment.

Hey, did I tell you about Hannah’s “Rachel moment”? Sunday night we are parked outside of Hannah’s apartment. The car is packed with her luggage and an air conditioner. She looks for her keys and can’t find them. They are in Merrick in her bag in her room.We are in the city. Luckily we found her roommates, unloaded the car, put the air conditioner in the window, and took Hannah home with us. (Sibling side story.)

Dinner at Sosa Borella on 50th and 8th Ave. — still good. And, as usual, Rachel was late. Why on earth she decided to take a taxi in the height of rush hour — from East Village — I’ll never know. And she’s surprised when it takes forever! We had already finished a carafe of sangria and all the appetizers by time she sat down.

Pam and Jan left for the ballet at 7:00 and we sat while Rachel slowly nibbled at her food and ordered another sangria. Afterwards, Hannah went uptown and Rachel and I took a cab going down. I jumped out of the cab at 8:06 and made the 8:08 LIRR. Drew picked me up and I walked in the door and checked the home phone messages. The first message was long and just a bunch of psycho babble. What the hell was it? Who does this? Could this be a butt call?  “That sounds like you,” says my drew to me. And — you know  what — it did sound like me — and it went on and on and on. It was me. Gotta learn how to use my phone. I keep forgetting to END my phone calls.

Still waiting for the original copy of the Bank of America reference letter I requested almost a month ago.

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Happy Fathers Day to All You Daddys

Off to Drew’s brother’s house today for a Fathers Day Brunch. Mmmm, I think there will be bagels and lox – my favorite! Should I bring my own tabasco sauce? Nah. Planning on picking up Rachel at the Hicksville train station at 12:15. So far all is as planned — it’s only 9:42 am — haha.

So, did I tell you that I am picking up a reference letter that is being faxed to my local Bank of America branch on Monday morning?

Many hours later:

Nice day, long day. Rachel made the train but Drew had to run home to get one of the presents we left in the house. We were a half hour late and it wasn’t even Rachel’s fault. Bagels and lox, cake and cookies, and presents galore. Nice day. We continued our Fathers Day celebration in the city. Drove Rachel to the city and had dinner there. No traffic on the way home. Long day tired. Need to rest up.

Tomorrow is a busy day. First I have to call the bank to see if they received my fax. And then . . .  and then . . . I told Rachel I would call her insurance company and see what I can find out. Apparently she used the website zocdoc.com and found 2 doctors, both said they accepted her insurance and each of them took a copay. Now it appears that the insurance company is claiming that  the doctors are out of network and won’t pay anything. So it should be a busy day.

Yankee game on. Score tied. Going to relax now.

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Thank Goodness for Speakerphones

Forget about summarizing . . . I am on hold now. If Bank of America can’t get this right can I trust them with my money?  Still no fax. Oops, just got a real person on the phone. She said the department I need to deal with is closed on the weekends. But she will resolve it and get the letter faxed over today. Yeah, I heard that one before!!!!

Anyone have a bank they can recommend?

That’s it for today. I’m beat already.

Still on hold. Still on hold . . . They are sending the fax over.

Picked up the fax and it’s WRONG!!!!! They listed too many accounts. I only wanted the joint accounts.

So I go home and call AGAIN . .  Finally I get someone on the phone who thinks he knows something . . . and you know what he says . . . we can’t do that (meaning only list the three accounts.) So after two weeks of bank reps asking me what accounts I want listed and wasting all this time he’s telling me it can’t be done — even though it was done yesterday but incorrectly. Nice, huh?

Mail just came — still no letter.

Did I mention that each of these phone calls over 45 minutes long? Do I sound aggravated?

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Bank of America Wants Me to Pay Them – – for what exactly?

“I’m going to exercise in a bit,” says my drew. “Oh good, I’m going to write about Bank of America on my blog,” I say. “Great, bitching about anything should get your readership up,” he replies. So here it goes:

I called B of A on Monday, June 6th, in the morning. I needed a reference letter. I spent a lot of time screaming into the phone –CUSTOMER SERVICE . . . A REAL PERSON . . . and a variety of other phrases. Each time the response was the same, “In order to serve you better . . . press 1 . . .” So eventually I pressed 1 and 1 and 2, and whatever it took to get me there. Used to be in the “old days” — and when I say old days I don’t mean when you actually dialed a number and immediately spoke to a real person– I mean when you start screaming into the phone and eventually you hear, “I’m sorry, I don’t understand your selection. Please wait while I redirect you to customer service.” That doesn’t happen anymore.

Where was I . . . oh yes, I eventually get to a real person and I tell him that I need a reference letter. He, apparently, knows what I am talking about. “There will be a ten-dollar charge,” he says. “Fine, how long will this take?” I say. “The request will take 24 to 48 hours to process and then we will mail it out.”

I had just come from my local B of A branch and someone there said I can have the letter faxed over to them. So I said to my guy on the phone, “I’d like to have it faxed to my local branch.” I figured this would speed up the process. HA HA. “It’s quicker if we mail it right out.” “Okay.” We are done chatting.

I wait a week. No charge on my account yet and no reference letter in the mail. I call on Wednesday, June 15th. I pressed all the right buttons and eventually I hear a human voice on the other end. I tell the voice I am waiting for the letter and he looks it up. “Says here it was processed on June 11th.” Hmm,” I say aloud, “that’s weird, on a Saturday? I really need this letter.” “Well, you should definitely get it by the end of the week,” he says, “Call Friday and they will fax it to your branch if you don’t receive it.” (hmmm, definitely? Call if you don’t receive it? Something’s not right!)

I call Thursday around 4 pm because I realized I needed the letter on Friday and my mail comes late. The voice says, “It says here it’s still processing . . .”  I tell him to fax the letter to my local branch. He starts to say something but I cut him off, “I need this letter and I want to pick it up tomorrow morning at my bank.” He gets his manager on the phone. She okays it and she wants to review everything because there is no letter to refer to. “You can pick it up at your local branch tomorrow morning. I’m going to fax it right over.”

Am I feeling confident? Not until I have that letter in my hand. I stop by the bank at 11:00 am on Friday, June 17. Nope, no fax! So I am now starting to twitch. I have the bank representative call to get the fax. She’s on hold . . . waiting, waiting, waiting. I thought she would have a direct number but no she doesn’t. I am not feeling good about this.

My bank representative tells me that the letter is being written and will Meanwhile, the mail comes and there is still no letter. I return to the bank a few hours later and pick up the letter. I go home and take another look at the letter — two checking and one savings account! No, how could that be? One savings account was listed as a checking account. I go online and look for the phone number but all I can pull up is the 800 number. Forget it, I jump in the car and drive back to the bank. The letter needs to be corrected but it needs to be faxed all over again. At least I don’t have to call the 800 number. I’ll leave that to the bank representative. So it’s Friday night and I still don’t have the letter but I spent plenty of time and gas to get it . . . all for a ten-dollar fee from Bank of America.

Hmm, what’s this in my email? An email from Bank of America saying “tell us what you think.”  Got to go now. Okay, I can do that.

Tomorrow: How to Summarize .

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