Sunday, August 21, 2005

Wells Fargo HELOC Fee Challenge

A year ago, we refinanced the house and rolled our $34k Home Equity Line of Credit (that had allowed us to avoid PMI and refinance our auto loan during our "uber lean year") into our new principle amount. During the refi process we were told that Wells Fargo would charge us $500 to close the account, but WF informed us we could "keep the account open" even if we paid off the balance and there would be no $500 charge for that. So that's what we did.

A couple of weeks ago we received our first Wells Fargo bill in about a year with no line items detailed and a balance of $75. Upon further investigation it turns out this was an "annual fee" that was detailed in our agreement (the rep said snottily) that is apparently "waived" if you carry a balance of $20k or more (soooo it's a $75 "inactivity" fee, right guys?)

So. Even though I've send them about $3k in interest over two years, it will cost me either $500 to close the line or $75 a year to keep it open but with less than a $20k balance. ::: boggle ::: I know they have to make money but dammmmmmmmmn that's obnoxious.

LaLa the Household Hero put on her "crazy lady" knickers and gave them a piece of her mind. IMO "crazy lady" is really just "pointed" with a dash (pinch? hint?) of "outrage" and either way it resulted in her getting transferred to someone with fee reversal powers. She posed the question "Why would I pay $75 a year to keep this account open in the chance that I *might* need it someday when I get offers every few days for lower rates and fees from your competitors?" And with that, the fee was reversed...until next year most likely ;)

Crazy Lady: 1, Wells Fargo: 0


  1. LaLa (or her crazy lady knickers) should be hired out for a fee, for those of us who get into a situation where we need to go ballistic on someone but don't because we are just too terminally nice (i.e. wimpy).

  2. WF Sucks! I got an equity line of credit for only $16k when I really didn't even need the money. After the first year, the 4.6% APR jumped to 14%!! I asked them to lower it and they said they'd get back with me....two weeks later I called them back...a week later, I sent them a check for the balance +$235, which they refunded me a year later. What a scam; I wished I had read the contract a little closer. I tried to haggle with them, pointing out that it's a dead account that I haven't used for a year as it is. They are going to charge me the $500 unless I stick it (the equity line of credit) to another mortgage I have with them. Why should I bother?? To go through the hassle of $75 yearly fees for the rest of my life or worry about it down the road - NO WAY. I'll suck up the $500 and NEVER EVER do business with WF again. Good news is I'll let EVERYONE I know about it. There are a lot of Banks that are avoiding these bogus 'junk' fees.

  3. Oh, I forgot to add that I had a $450k home lined up to close within the next 4 weeks through WF and I'm dumping out on it : ) It's nice not to do business with them. I've financed 3 other loans through Ditech and they have been great!!!


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