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Q&A: Changing bank accounts

Q. I want to switch bank accounts as my bank simply does not give a toss about me, but I don’t like the thought of the paper work that I will have to go through. Do you have any good ideas to overcome this challenge?

A. ASIC’s Fido website has actually put the process down into a pretty easy 4-step process. This is what the website recommends:

1. Set up your new transaction account. Leave your old transaction account open with some money in to cover any automatic payments that need to be made during the changeover period.

   2. Ask your current financial institution for a list of all your regular direct debits and credits. It will give you a list of your automatic payments from the last 13 months. (You may be charged a small fee for this service.) If your financial institution doesn’t already offer this service, you can find this information by looking at your account statements.

   3. Take that list to your new financial institution. They will help you re-establish those payments on the new account. They will also help you to give your new account details to organisations that you pay or that pay you.

   4. After you are sure all your automatic payments have been updated to your new account, you can safely close your old account.

ASIC offers a final tip: “It pays to double check old account statements. Remember to check on automatic payments between your transaction account and other accounts, such as an online savings account or credit card account. Annual subscriptions or membership fees are another thing to watch out for.”

Book a complimentary first appointment with Switzer Financial Services today.

Important information:This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. For this reason, any individual should, before acting, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard to the individual’s objectives, financial situation and needs and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.

Published on: Thursday, August 13, 2009

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