Bank fees rising while interest sinks, study shows

Today, letting the bank hold your money for you can get costly. The cost of bank fees continue to be higher than any interest you might earn. 

A recent study at Lending Tree’s MagnifyMoney group finds that in the last 10 years, how banks charge fees and offer interest have changed.

"Consumers on average basically paid out more fees than they received in interest on there checking and savings accounts," said savings analyst Ken Tumin of MagnifyMoney.

Here’s the breakdown of where your money goes, which adds up if you don't keep track.

Monthly service fees can get up to $25. There are work-arounds, so ask your bank about that.  Out-of-network ATM charges can be costly. You will get dinged for excessive transactions fees. The federal limit is six. Overdraft fees are pricey. About $35. The same with an insufficient funds fees.

During the pandemic fees went down because banks waived some of them, like the overdraft fee. Interest rates are down which is why we are buying homes. But you earn less interest on your money, too.

"The very easy thing now is to avoid overdraft protection. Make sure you opt out of it. If you’re using your debit card, and you’re near that zero balance, you don’t want your debit card to be approved when you’re making that purchase. You want to go ahead and have that declined so you’re not surprised. That little purchase could mean a $30-$35 overdraft fee," Mr. Tumin explained.

And, he recommends, opening up a savings account at a bank that is only online. It can offer up to four times the interest earning power. 

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