BB&T plans to change the direct deposit fee waiver for its basic checking account, called the Bright Banking account. The bank will also introduce a new checking account that is exactly the same as the Bright Banking account, but it has a different fee policy. Furthermore, two other BB&T checking accounts will see an increase in their monthly fees.
Currently, BB&T’s Bright Banking account has a $10 monthly fee that can be waived with a single direct deposit of $100 or more per statement cycle. The fee can also be waived when customers have a $1,500 average balance, keep a combined $6,000 in deposit and loan balances in various BB&T accounts or have an active BB&T mortgage.
Starting Aug. 12, the Bright Banking account will require a combined direct deposits totaling $500 or more per statement cycle. The other fee waiver options remain unchanged.
Depending on a customer’s unique financial situation, the change could make it easier or more difficult to avoid the monthly fee.
Customers who have multiple direct deposits totaling $500 but never a single direct deposit of $100 will find that they’re able to dodge the monthly fee. Those who do receive a direct deposit of $100 but never $500 in direct deposits in the month will soon have to deal with the monthly fee.
New account on the way
BB&T will launch the new Fundamentals Checking account, which comes with a non-avoidable $5 monthly fee. According to a BB&T customer service representative, the new account will offer the same features as the Bright Banking account.
For customers who are absolutely sure that they cannot avoid the $10 monthly fee on the Bright Banking account, they are advised to go with the Fundamentals Checking account for the cheaper $5 monthly fee.
Again, BB&T is not the first bank to offer different pricing models on basic checking accounts with the same features.
TD Bank offers its TD Simple checking account for a $5.99 monthly fee while its TD Convenience checking account has a $15 monthly fee that can be avoided with a $100 minimum balance.
Bank of America is also testing two similarly-featured checking accounts, one has a fee that can be avoided when customers opt for electronic statements and refrain from teller assistance for deposits and withdrawals while the other has a reduced, flat monthly fee.
Other upcoming changes include an increased monthly fee from $25 to $30 for BB&T’s Elite Gold Checking account and an increased monthly fee from $5 to $6 for the bank’s add-on identity protection program.
BB&T spokespeople did not reply to requests for comment as to why the bank decided to make these changes.