I have been with Bank of the West for about two years now and have never really had any problems with them - financially - but I am really, really tired of the super clunky online aspects of the bank.
My biggest complaint is that BotW seems to give the computers weekends and holidays off... Anything I do Friday will not show up in their systems until Tuesday, and if there is a bank holiday in there things could take a week to show up.
So while I was 'grin and bear it' with the super-slow processing, I was willing to overlook it for convenience - my local branch is across the parking lot from where I work. But now with BNP Paribas (the French bank that owns BotW) getting hit is a nine billion dollar fine for helping places like Iran do financial work in US dollars, I think it is time to move on.
I have always had a good experience at this location. A good number of the tellers know my name and recognize me when I come inside. If I have overdraft fees or something that I may have overlooked, they often speak up and make me awake of the problem.
I could go on for hours on how bad this place is, but there's literally been nothing positive they've done with our loan experience. Impossible to reach online, unhelpful, refuse to honor requests for basic customer service, we can never login to check our balance, etc, etc. We will never have anything to do with this place once our loan is paid off.
I've had a business account in the BoW for over a year. While the branch personnel was very helpful, I've never succeeded in making online banking service work. The customer service (technical support) is absolutely clueless and non-responsive. I've been in technology business for over 30 years, but cannot navigate through the site to get the basic service.
I have my personal account with Wells Fargo. Perhaps I should move there my business account as well.
Just applied for a home loan with this bank. I was given a qualifying letter for the amount we needed. We went through the loan process. Two days before closing, the loan officer called in the afternoon to tell me our loan was denied. No specific information, no help with alternatives. He missed the deadline to notify us and we could have lost our deposit. When I called him on this he blamed my realtor saying she should have called him. Later I found out he had emailed the other realtor stating that everything looked good. I have done a lot of business with this bank and have commercial property loans. My business accounts were also with them. I am disappointed that a bank I had thought was so good would treat me like that and hire someone who was so incompetent. Oh, did I mention I am considered a preferred customer?
This is my favorite Bank period. At 64 yrs old I've had many relationships with about every bank you can think of and believe me, I know the differance. You will not be disappointed. In any area whatsoever -- in person or online.
Your search for a solid bank is over.
Hunt Beach Ca.
I have been with Bank of the West for over 15 years, the Walnut Creek branch people are great -- the Los Gatos branch is nice. The company itself has become horrific on charges fees, ones that you have never heard of before, and arbitrary. The Santa Cruz branch even tried to charge my wife $5 to cash one of my checks. I have been with them back when they were Central Bank, and were a nice small local bank. Now they have grown way to big, and just try to suck money out of you. Buy and spend local. I have moved all my accounts to a Local Credit Union.
The customer service at Bank of the West is poor to say the least. The agents, IF you can understand what they are saying, do not do what they're supposed to do. I have been waiting for a letter to be faxed to my local DMV from Bank of the West for days now. This has been holding up registering my car. The letter was correcting their address. The original letter that was included with the title of my car to the DMV had the WRONG address on it. You would think whoever wrote the letter would type the correct mailing address of their institution. Instead, they put the title release department's address. Trying to get this rectified is a nightmare! Also, I've had my car loan with them since 2009. They have my middle initial wrong. I have asked them to change it for about a year with no luck. I have stopped trying.
Dealing with them is frustrating. The managers are no better. They're rude and unhelpful. I will be glad when the car is paid off and I don't have to deal with them anymore.
The Bank Manager called me to try to sell products to me and she talked over me the whole time. Sad because our farm does a lot of business in Mabel MN but not with that bank any more.
At my branch in Lake Tahoe the customer service has always been good, which was nice. I was relatively indifferent otherwise UNTIL they first changed my free checking account to an "easy checking" =more fees! That upset me. Then, I signed up for "debit card overdraft protection" which was vaguely described online and sounded like--overdraft protection. Which it is not! $175 in fees for 2 days of overdraft! My savings account was not touched at all...I called my local branch and talked with a representative who offered to talk to her manager about possibly reversing one of the fees for me. I am still closing both of my accounts and moving to a smaller, more local bank, and on principle would not recommend banking here.
Deliberately holding deposits so payments bounce then posting deposits!
I've had my business accounts at this bank for over 20 years. I moved my personal accounts to another bank 3 years ago and am in the process of moving my business accounts as well. Years ago the customer service was great! For the past 5 years it has been inconsistent and most of the time very poor. I am finally tired of never knowing what to expect from this bank. Some of my business deposits they process right away. Others they will hold for 10 days! They have held deposits for 10 days that have cleared my clients' bank the day after I deposited the check.
Several Months ago I deposited a check in my account from Westerra Credit Union. It was in the amount of $7,000 and was drawn to fix my grandmothers sewer line which had collapsed. After I deposited it they informed me the funds would be available in 10 business days. Huh? I've been banking here for several years, never a bounced check or overdraft and my funds are always available the next day. Michael the Manager sneers at me and says, "well with what you keep in your account, I can't do much for you." I guess I'm too small time for him to even pick up the phone and call the credit union to verify. His own customer service manager thought it was idiocy so she fixed it and I stayed.
In September two charges appeared on my account that I did not make. I filed a fraudulent claim and now after three months they tell me that they are not going to help me and I need to take it up with the website that charged me. Of course this is well past the time I can dispute it with the website so I will be reporting them to the FDIC. That $70 will be the last of my money they get.
Do not bank with them!
I wrote to the bank and asked them what all the charges were for and this is their response to me:
Thank you for your recent inquiry.
The $31.00 charge on your account is a Paid Overdraft Fee. This charge occurs when an item presented for payment against your account causes your account to become overdrawn.
The following items presented for payment on November 19, 2013:
Levy/Internal Revenue Service $34.51
Electronic Debit/American General $25.16*
*Paid Overdraft Fee assessed
The available balance in your account on this day was $34.51. These items were paid and your available account balance became (-$25.16). Your account was charged the Paid Overdraft Fee on November 20, 2013, the following business day.
According to our records, the Internal Revenue Service issued a full release of the levy. Therefore, your account was credited $34.51 on November 26, 2013.
Please note that whenever a notice of levy is placed upon an account, Bank of the West reserves the right to charge the levy collection/processing fee. Even though the levy was not assessed to your account, the levy collection/processing fee of $100.00 is still applicable. As a result, your account was debited $34.51 on November 26, 2013.
Your account is charged $5.00 if there is a negative balance of $15.00 or more. The fee is posted to your account beginning the third business day after the negative balance occurs. This charge is assessed each business day the account has a negative balance.
Please note this charge is in addition to any overdraft, returned item or other fee which may have been assessed.
For your convenience, Bank of the West offers several services that are designed to help you avoid overdraft fees. For more information on the notice of levy or overdraft protection, please contact your branch directly at (316) 292-5870.
I overdrew my account (my fault). They charged me $31.00 for overdrawing it and then a few days later started charging me $5.00 every couple of days since it was still overdrawn. Have been banking there for years and have direct deposit and this is the way they treat customers!
Management there has its own agenda, I have never worked for a company that took risk, and office gossip was the norm. (Working in banking for 30+ years.) The customer always comes first. Training and support always there. Have worked at Bigger banks, team work and support was always there. This was not the case at this office or bank. Everyone is out for their selves no matter what the cost to the customer. Credit never give and accusation and bullying. Federal guide line not followed. Working at smaller and then larger banks, Federal procedures must be followed for all customer. I never worked for bank where they have said theirs is a grey area. I would never recommend anyone working or banking at this institution. This has been my experience, and I hope other employees have a better one.
I was running late on the way home from work on a Friday night. I wanted to get my check in the bank because I had to work on Saturday. I called the Bank and someone stayed late so I could get my check deposited. In this day and age it is getting harder and harder to find people who will go the extra mile for you. Thanks to the people at the Blaine branch of Bank of the West. Great crew everyone there
cares a great deal. I would highly recommend this Bank. Great customer service is priceless!
I hereby give fair warning to all not to do business with "bank of the worst" unless you have very deep pockets and an over abundance of p patience and are ok with deflection, excuses, and purposely not returning calls. Christine a manager at my branch office was in capable of making a decision. Incapable. Of returning calls as promised, just incapable. Absolutely disgusting. Angry again.
Would rate them lower if possible . use this bank if your not attached to your money or have enough to give away . would not let them handle my change on a dare!
I try to refinance my house with BOW.Started in January and still not done.They being untruthful and irresponsible, and manager don't want to correct there mistakes.
Bank of the West has the worst customer service ever. I walked in and no one was there to greet me. I walked in to close my account, because I was moving to a city where there are no Bank of the West branches. The teller said why I was closing my account? I told her the city where I am moving to does not have a Bank of the West branch. She then suggested that I remain a Bank of the West customer. I told her why would I want to go over 50 miles to a location or to use an ATM? She kept on insisting that I have my account open. I said look lady, there is no right mind that I want to go over 50 miles to do my banking, so I closed it - after convincing her 5 times that the city where I was moving to did not have a Bank of the West branch and they charge a lot of fees; and most of all they do not let you save money.
I have been banking with these folks since 2007. I have moved in that time to three different branches, (for personal reasons not related to my banking experience). They made sure up front that I understood fully what the fine print entailed, and have never broken their word. At one, (Gresham), I could tell that my presence was not always thrilling to the customer service representatives. However, I have found even there that my money was managed well, and that they did exactly what they said they would. At the other two branches I have visited regularly, (Forest Grove, 82nd & Division), I have not only been given honest easy and accurate banking services but the customer service is always great! Even when busy they are always friendly. I want to thank everyone at Bank of the West!
Every time I come into this branch I am so disappointed! The service is absolutely terrible. The first time I walked into the branch it was a ghost town. Not one banker or teller to be found! When a teller finally acknowledged my presence she made me stand at the counter for an additional five min while she snuck back off to the back. Not acceptable! When she finally assisted me with my business another teller came out and they proceeded to discuss what happened over the weekend. It was just so inappropriate. The second time I went to the branch I decided to try my luck at the drive through. I had to push the call button for a teller twice before anyone would assist me and there were no other cars in the parking lot or drive up! When she did assist me she was rude! If you are looking for quality service do not bank here.
Payoff your Motor home and BOW/Essex will stall title release Essex Credit and BOW are basically the same animal. Sold my motor home on April 21, 2013, wired payoff to BOW on Monday 4/22/13 as directed by Toni (very nice) at BOW, who also said title would be received in 5 days if payoff wired, 10-15 days if paid online. Spoke with Cathy(think she lied about name)4/26/13 Friday and she stated "title has not been mailed, maybe today, should receive by Monday or Tues" (April 29,30). She was very rude and had a "smart" attitude.
As of Tues. 7 pm EST, no title, contacted [Redacted], regarding this, also contacted [Redacted], spoke with Darlene, his assistant, who immediately sent me to Julianne Wallace. These people were "professional" but still got same run around from them over next 24 hrs., regarding a "3 day processing", I'm sure not too many people send them thousands of dollars daily to payoff motor homes, etc. Our son was stationed in California for 6 yrs, mail takes 3 days from coast to coast, east to west and vice-versa. Our buyer is ticked to the max, his hands are tied since he has no title. Ten (10) days and counting. should not have paid for wired funds, taken time to go to bank and wire pay off. Mr. Barron and Ms. Wallace both said today "you should have your title by Friday". 10-15 days. They have refused to immediately hand over a title on property that is no longer theirs as of Monday April 22, 2013 as of 2:00 pm EST, they had received payoff 11:00 am their time. It was no longer theirs. We still do not have title, but with this intentional act of withholding property, this story will be spread far and wide, with all the details by both buyer and seller, we also have other avenues we are exploring. Was told today that it was mailed last Thurs, 25th, story keeps changing, then said Friday, can't wait to see postmark, By the way, title mailed General delivery, not certified, how sweet.
I do not bank there and I am so glad. I receive a phone call every month from their branch manager [Redacted]. She leaves messages on my cell phone when my voice mail clearly says My name is Melissa for a person named [Redacted]. I have returned her calls numerous times telling her this is not Scott and told her my name, but she has not corrected the problem as of yet. I have received these calls for over a year. I am so frustrated. If this is how well they keep up with their customers information you definitely do not want to bank with them.
Was very helpful and friendly. I really appreciate his help.
I opened the account because it was close to my office and people in the branch were helpful and friendly. 1) I have many credit cards but this is the third time I am getting fraud on my bank of the west credit card. something is up with their system. 2) the telephone customer service people are very rude and they tell you that they will call you back and/or solve your problem and they never do. I am about to close my account with them after seven years. I am so fed up with bank of the west due to their irresponsibility.
Let' start with opening a equity line of credit. I was told it would not cost me anything. Big lie. $150.00 when all was said and done.
It was like a used car salesman reeling in the mark. Your almost done and then, whoops, a fee here. Okay I'll deal with it. Whoops, a fee there. Oh my, we've been to the bank twice already about this, paper works finished, and we can wrap it up in 5 minutes if you don't mind the extra fee, so sorry. You get the picture? Should've/could've walked out.
But it's the the on-line banking that really set me off and inspired me to give this glowing review. I talked to Chris in on-line tech support (nothing to do with Forestville) and I was denied access to my account when I could not log in, because they thought my user name was suspicious. I gave them my social, they called me back at my home on they number they have on file, I gave them the account number and the opening balance. They explained how they are trying to protect me from identity theft because I am insured by FDIC only to $250,000.00. even though my opening balance can't afford a hamburger. Of course, we all know they are looking out for number one....Bank of the West...not the customer. I'm covered up to $250,000.00 by the FDIC. It's Saturday and I will have to go into the branch to verify my identity so I may go on-line and see my account. Bank of the West on line...I love you guys!!!!
For 17 years a friend brought flowers from her garden to Bank of the West in Forestville. She made arrangements and gave beautiful bouquets to each teller. She did this at no charge and only to be nice. Forestville is a small town and she did this with all the businesses. She would come into the employee room with a bucket of flowers, separate them into individual vases and give them to each teller.
New management took over a year ago, they hired a trainee, Joel, He had only been working at the bank for a short time. When he saw my friend with the flowers go into the employee room, He followed her in, demanded she leave immediately and never go into "his" employee room again. He was very rude, and unprofessional in his demeanor. Subsequently, Bank of the West now pays money to an outside flower vendor.
My complaint, with this new trainee Joel is about my son. My son went to the bank to open an account. He had him put all his money in a long term cd (at extremely low interest) Now they want to charge him over $300. to take his money out. The trainee, did not explain other options such as a money market. Neither did he offer a short term cd. This trainee is incompetent, with extremely poor customer service. I have banked with Bank of the west for over 20 years and run approximately a million dollars per year through their bank. I am slowly removing all my accounts.