Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Washington Mutual Sucks - Complaint

In 12/06, I had opened both a checking and savings account online. The special offer for opening both accounts simultaneously online was 5% APY for the savings account portion. After wasting an hour of my time on the telephone and then going to my nearest wamu during lunch combined, I found out that my checking account was closed (without any warning or notification of closure) by wamu on 12/31 due to inactivity for 2 cycles. Apparently, this was stated in the disclosures when I opened the account. I must admit, like many, I did not read the disclosures. Shouldn't they have a notification at least to state that they were going to close the account? Had I known, I would have left $1 in the checking account. I did not see one message on my wamu messages account inbox stating this information, but I did see several messages stating that my online statement was available. My savings account went from 5% in oct to 4.89% in Nov to 3% in Dec to the current rate of 0.25%. I saw wamu was currently offering 4.75% apy if both a checking and savings are opened online simultaneously. I just opened another account and will close the old accounts. This is not the first time I was dissappointed with their customer service. If they weren't offering such a competitive savings rate, I would take my business elsewhere.

Online Savings - California
Interest Rate 4.65%
Annual Percentage Yield (APY) 4.75%

Maintain a minimum balance of $300.00 each day (savings account only) of the monthly statement cycle to avoid the monthly service charge amount of $4.00.

Apparently, you have to leave at least $1 and make a transaction (such as money transfer from checking to savings) every 6 months or so to for the account to stay active, according to a customer service rep.

Update 1/9/08 - I just emailed a complaint about WaMu to the Federal Consumer Help Department:

To file a complaint, you can:
Call us toll-free at 888-851-1920 (TTY: 877-766-8533) 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. CST
E-mail us at ConsumerHelp@FederalReserve.gov
Send us a fax at 877-888-2520
Write to us at:Federal Reserve Consumer HelpPO Box 1200Minneapolis, MN 55480

update 2/2008. i received a letter from the Office of Thrift Supervision
Department of the Treasury Consumer Affairs letter regarding my complaint last which reads:

Dear xxxxx:

Thank you for your inquiry. We have forwarded a copy of your inquiry to the institution and asked that it respond directly to you.

We have also requested that the institution provide us with a copy of its response from our review. If the response appears to address your concerns, and if no issues involving federal regulations administered by this agency are raised, we will not take further action. However, a complete copy of our file on this matter will be retained to assist us in monitoring the institution.

This agency has no authority to arbitrate disputes involving contract interpretation, questions of fact, or other legal issues. Such matters are in the jurisdiction of the courts.

If you contact us again, please do so in writing and use the above-referenced case number in your correspondence.

Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention.

Very truly yours,


I did also receive a personal letter from WaMu with an explanation as well. case is now closed. i still hate WaMu and have changed back to capital one. interest lowered from 4.75% to 3.30% (due to feds lowering interest rates). capital one curently offers a 3.85% apy for amounts over $10,000.