A while back, I got hit with an overdraft fee.
I know, I know. I literally run a personal finance website. But hey, we all make mistakes. And when they happen, the best thing you can do is be proactive about it.
So I saw the fee, sighed, and picked up the phone.
The conversation went like this:
RAMIT: Hi, I just saw this bank charge for overdrafting and I’d like to have it waived.
BANK: I see that fee. Unfortunately, we’re not able to waive that fee. It was [some BS excuse about how it’s not waivable].
RAMIT: Well, I’ve been a good customer with the bank for X years now and would still like to get it waived since this is a rare occurrence. What else can you do to help me?
BANK: Hmm, one second sir. I see that you’re a really good customer. I’m going to check with my supervisor. Can you hold for a second?[hold]
I was able to check with my supervisor and waive the fee. Is there anything else I can help you with today?
And just like that, I got my overdraft fee waived. This script works so well for a number of reasons:
- I repeated my complaint and asked the bank rep how they could constructively help me.
- I’ve been a loyal customer to the bank for many years, which you should always use to your advantage when calling to negotiate.
- I was polite but firm. Nothing can force a negotiation to go sour faster than a bad attitude.
You can use this exact script in order to get yours waived too.
What to do if they say no?
But there is always the chance they still say no to your request — and that’s okay. When that happens, there are three options you can take:
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