March 11, 2015

Survey: Customers hate banks' monthly fees

Nearly one-third, or 31 percent, of respondents in the 2015 Consumer Banking Insights Study from Harris Poll list banks' monthly service fees as their most-hated bank charge.

The survey also found that 66 percent of respondents would rather bank at a community bank or credit union than a large national bank.

Harris Poll surveyed consumers in January. After monthly fees, the second-most hated fee was ATM fees, with 26 percent of the vote.

The study also found that 92 percent of respondents believed they were aware of their banks' fee structures, but roughly one in four still felt "scammed" by the fees. Millennials and megabank customers were more likely to feel taken advantage of: 30 percent and 36 percent felt that way, respectively, versus just 14 percent of community bank customers and credit union members as a whole.

Meanwhile, around half of community bank customer and credit union member respondents said their checking accounts were free.

Gabe Krajicek, the CEO of Kasaa checking accounts, a company associated with the survey, commented: "The good news is that consumers can easily eliminate the top two most-hated fees. Free checking accounts that do not charge monthly service fees and also refund out-of-network ATM fees are available through community banks and credit unions nationwide, and consumers can save a lot of money simply by switching."