BB&T is following the footsteps of other big banks by taking precautionary measures to curb the effects of the proposed debit card transaction fee caps. BB&T has started announcing, to customers who currently have BB&T Free Checking accounts, that they will stop offering free checking.

BB&T (NYSE: BBT) will be terminating its free checking account on June 2, 2011. Effective June 3, BB&T Free checking accounts will be converted to BB&T Bright BankingTM checking accounts.

Many of the largest banks have already eliminated free checking accounts with checking accounts that require certain qualifying transactions to avoid a monthly account maintenance fee. Much of the commotion is due to the anticipation of the reduced revenue that will follow if the Durbin Amendment of the Dodd-Frank Act is enacted.

Based in North Carolina with over $157 billion in total assets, BB&T is among the top 10 commercial banks in the U.S. that will be following suit in order to maintain a profitable balance sheet.

BB&T Bright BankingTM Checking Account

Starting June 3, 2011, BB&T Free checking accounts will change to BB&T Bright BankingTM.

The Bright Banking account has a monthly maintenance fee of $10 ($12 in Kentucky and Indiana) unless one of the following fee waiver requirements are met:

  • At least one monthly direct deposit of $100 or greater, OR
  • $1,500 ($2,000 in KY/IN) average checking balance per statement cycle, OR
  • $6,000 ($7,500 in KY/IN) combined in deposit and retail outstanding loan balances to include Checking, Savings, Money Rate Savings, Investor’s Deposit Accounts, Retail Loans, Lines of Credit, and Credit Card balances, OR
  • Any BB&T personal mortgage

If you opened a BB&T Free Checking account between February 22 and April 10, any incurred maintenance fees will be waived for the months of June, July and August 2011.

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  • MT

    I just received a letter from BB&T introducing Bright Banking.  I have held an account with BB&T for approximately 5 years.  Now, with literally 17 days notice, they will be charing my account $15 per month.  Here’s a way for the bank to take a huge fall.  Chase away your long term clients.  Not to mention the others they may take with them when they leave.  

  • RR

    I have received the same letter. Thank you BB&T, I will now start looking for a new bank to give my money to. You have lost another customer!

  • Lunasea

    I’ve been a customer since it was Sovereign Bank, then First Virginia, and finally BB&T.  The fee letter was the final straw after a series of issues (like rearranging my overdrafts so that the largest draft went through first, followed by a ton of tiny drafts).  It’s inconvenient to switch, but the letter was a wake up call that there really are better banking options out there.

  • dave

    Just dropped my BBT Bright Banking because of the new fees.  Someone at BBT is not too “bright.”

  • Klh086

    Im going there tomorrow to close my account! $10 a month is crazy. Accounts are for keeping your money not getting it taken away for nothing!

  • Bobby Adams

    Here’s another – I see a $4.00 called “EasyImage” on my latest statement. I called and was told it’s a fee to see cancelled check images when using online statements. WTF!?@!?! I use my printer, my paper, my ink, to print out monthly statements. I save them the cost of printing out statements and the cost of mailing them to me, and now I have to pay to print cancelled check images? What address for BB&T do I use to send my bill for my paper and ink expenses?

  • EB

    “Bright Banking”?! Bright for whom? It’s downright dismal for me and my paltry hard-earned cash. I am closing my account today. Silly BB and T.

  • WDH

    I don’t have online banking, so why do I have to pay a EasyImage statement fee?  If they insist on charging it, I’ll pull out all my savings, yep I got a savings.  I’m sure there’s a smaller local bank that want’s my business and savings.

  • I’m not sure about you guys, but if you had direct deposit — it eliminates any chance of monthly maintenance fees. And maybe if more people kept a sharp eye on their accounts and watch what they spent, there wouldn’t be so much complaining.

    • Sue

      I have direct deposit and meet their minimum required balance throughout the month and am now being charged a $4 EasyImage fee.  I keep a sharp eye on my account and still have a fee…

      • I hardly write checks any more. The only fee I got charged was when I made a purchase outside of the U.S… and that was very small. I don’t mind them collecting a few cents as opposed to dollars.

    • Anonymous

      My employer does not offer to do direct deposits so I am out of luck..but I am joining the local credit union..anyone who pays BB&T the $10,$12 or $15 a month are just plain idiots to the bank and close your accounts thats the only thing banks understand customer defection..once they lose all them debit card transaction fees from irate customers they will get on board with reality…Other wise don’t do have the power use it…

  • .

    Just noticed another $15 fee on my small balance.  I called BB&T and they told me the balance threshhold was $10K.  That’s okay….I’m closing all my BB&T accounts.   $15 a month for nothing.

  • NotMe

    I noticed a fee for something i didnt ask for – EASYPROFIT i mean EASYIMAGE.  BBT imaged 5 checks.  That is .80 per check.  What kinda crap is that? 

  • What a crock. I’m fed up with BB&T.  Yeah, I’m going to do “bright banking” alright….I’m switching banks.