Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Like I Should Be Worried About Those Jerks

Today we got a letter from the bank that has our mortgage, and with whom we have a credit card. I don't even remember how we got this credit card. But back when we lived in CA, we had our checking with this bank too, because it's everywhere out west. It doesn't even exist in the east, so we've moved on. Anyway, we have no balance on the credit card and we never use it. The card itself is in a file folder. So, the letter said, "Dear Matthew, it is never easy to bring unpleasant news to one of our valued customers." It went on to say that they were lowering the credit limit on this unused card, lowering it about 75%, because their "periodic account reviews" determined it was "necessary." They were kind enough to enclose a brochure that "offers many tips and resources available to help you on the road to financial success." I had just taken a swig of my tea and did a partial spit take at that last part. Galling! And totally bogus.

So I called them and was quickly connected with somebody in card services. I said, "Hi Martin, it is never easy to bring unpleasant news to a bank, but I'm calling to cancel my card." He mumbled something. I think the poor guy had a cold. And you know how this is the point in the call where they always connect you to a "retention specialist" to try to cajole you into keeping the account open? I mean, that's the way that call goes. We haven't paid the annual fee on our airline rewards card in a long time using this method. Well, not with Martin. He did not want to play. It took about ten seconds for a card we've had for years to be closed down.

It gave me pause. After I hung up, I told Matt about it and said, "I'm worried about those guys. They must be in trouble." I know that banks everywhere are moving to cut their potential liability (i.e., the amount of credit their customers could use), but whoa. We have a mortgage with these people. A mortgage they saw fit to refinance for us not that long ago. But our little credit card was giving them the shakes. Matt said it made him wonder if they were going to sell our mortgage to someone. Like, what's going on out there? Troubling.

Do you think I should send a fruit basket? Or maybe one of those Pepperidge Farm sausages. Oh, and also they can go fuck themselves.

10 comments:

Michele Renee said...

And you have a mortgage with them? Obviously they have many systems which do not speak the same language to each other.
We had a card once I used only barely and paid it off. A couple years later they notified me they closed it. I would have preferred to still have it with a $0 balance but I say good riddance!

delaine said...

Hey, the very same thing happened to me last week. ATT sent me a form letter saying that it was painful(on their part, I guess) but they were canceling a card I had more many years because I haven't used it. Then the letter said, calling or writing them might keep the card in effect, but my credit limit would be lowered from 10,000 to 100 ! PUHLEEZE ! Who needs those slime molds anyway ??!
What is the marketing plan behind that? I suppose it'll be recorded as a mark against me at the credit bureaus, too. A poor man (or lady) really CAN'T get ahead.

Becky said...

Yes, in the upside-down world of consumer credit, Mom, we are "deadbeats" because we are not making them money in the form of interest payments. If the account was closed at your request, it shouldn't be a ding on your credit.

But what was so irritating is that our mortgage is with them and we're making them PLENTY of money that way.

Sara said...

I'm going to have to pull an "lmao" for that one! ha!

Especially if they're trying to give tips and resources on financial success. Huh. How's that working out for them?

Mad Woman said...

That's kind of scary. We don't have any credit cards, but I'd be worried if my bank who I had a mortgage and more with pulled that kind of stunt. And yeah...fuck 'em.

Michele said...

You tell 'em. You are better off without that card.

Keely said...

Ha! Awesome. In a mildly concerning kind of way. Paul has a credit card that we've never used (mostly because I stole it from him before he got a chance to even sign or activate it) and they keep sending us letters trying to entice us to play with it. Uh, no.

The Dental Maven said...

Seems to me they might be just the candidate for "the" fruit cake gift this year.

Melanie said...

I don't use credit cards. I know I probably should, and as an American who lives within her means I'm supposedly off the economic grid. I'm not making anyone any money, because if I don't have cash for it, I don't buy it.

I am stunned at this though. I guess it goes to show just how bad things are in the banking industry.

Bonnie said...

We also live within our means -- but definitely use one credit card (for miles) which we pay off every month, so we make nothing for the credit card bank. (Seems like a no-brainer -- we get one free flight to Europe every two years by doing that.) The card we have that we DON'T use (we only have it for overdraft protection) is another story. We keep getting letters from the bank raising our credit limit, asking us to use it, with checks to sign and use as we wish, etc. Sorry bank, we aren't falling for that!