April 10, 2007

Scotiabank Sucks

Filed under: analog — mhoye @ 7:00 pm

So I’ve just bought a house, and during that process my bank has lost my business about five times. It seems like every time I speak to them, they go that extra mile to make absolutely sure that I’ll never want to give them any of my money ever again.

How do I hate you, Scotia, let me count the ways.

#1: We need to give various people voided cheques, for insurance and so forth. Can we just walk into a convenient Scotiabank and order some cheques? Hell no – you can only order cheques from your “home branch”; ours used to be in Ottawa. But we can change our home branch easily, right? Sure, but that takes 24 hours to “take effect”! So we need to come back, and talk to them again. But only between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. I’m sure that we didn’t have anywhere we needed to be during that time. Honestly, this sounds too stupid to be true, but this is straight from the Scotia rep’s mouth.

#2: On that note: “Banker’s Hours”. Must be nice.

#3: A recurring conversation:

“We just bought a house.”

“Oh, did you get your mortgage with us?”

“No, your rates really weren’t competitive.”

“Can I ask what rate you got?”

“Sure, we got x.xx%”

“And you didn’t bring that number back to us?”

No, we didn’t. Why should we have to? Your first offer wasn’t even close; is the fact that both my wife and I have done all our banking with you for our entire adult lives not a good enough reason for you to put your best offer forward, here? I guess not.

#4: Those people at the bank who tell you which sort of accounts you should put your money in for best results, that sort of thing? We’ve had to go over their choices and double-check their advice every single time we’ve spoken to any of them, because their advice has frequently been either misleading or wrong.

#5: Their posted mortgage and interest rates are crappy, but that’s OK, because those posted rates are all lies anyway. I’ll admit I should have noticed this a long time ago, but when I found out that my bank’s interest rates were a fraction of what the competition was offering, they offered to increase it. Substantially, and just like that. To almost, but not quite, what the competition is offering. Will they do that on their own, unprovoked, just because I’ve been a good customer? Of course not. ING Direct for the decisive, undisputed win here, seriously.

#6: Funny story: my wife emptied one account, and then had to change it’s “home branch” so that she could close it, forcing the one-day-hold on it and forcing her to come back the next day. And because the account had zero dollars in it for 24 hours, we were charged a two-dollar service fee that the account rep neglected to mention. An oversight, I’m sure; I’m also sure there are plenty of regulations to hide behind and use as excuses for the fact that dealing with them in any way at all is a totally onerous process, but I’m all out of caring, and that extra service fee was just icing. Especially considering this next bit.

#7: Today, when my wife told one of their desk monkeys that, again no, we weren’t going to get our mortgage with them because their rates are not competitive at all, they said we should get our mortgage from them anyway, because they’d give us some free patio furniture. Not a competitive rate, just some ugly, cheap-ass patio furniture.

Whoever thought of that last one should be fired. I’m moving my finances over to ING now, who not only offer wildly better interest rates but also because their representatives that I’ve spoken to seem to share my belief that my time is worth something. Goodbye, Scotia, and good riddance. Which is to say, screw you guys.


  1. #1.) I once walked in to a random TD branch, 15 minutes to close, and asked to withdraw $15,000 cash. That day, I learned my lesson. With TD, the “home branch” is nowhere near as important as the “signature card.” All I have to do is to go in to any TD branch, and ask a teller to get my “home branch” to fax them a copy of my “signature card.” Once the random branch has a copy thereof, then I can do anything there that I want. Sure, the “home branch” transit number is printed on my cheques, but everything else runs smoothly. Needless to say, I’ve got signature cards littered throughout branches now from coast to coast.

    #2.) You mean banking retail hours. I’ve seen banking hours. They’re different.

    #3.) — the rate on the website was the rate I got.

    #4.) has always given me fantastic advice, never charged for it, and even recommends competition when appropriate.

    #5.) Just get a broker already. You didn’t learn from car insurance?

    #6.) Tell them to send you to collections. I win those fights.

    #7.) MBNA has now mailed me 5 duffel bags. Don’t knock the free crap.

    #8.) ING isn’t a Real Canadian Bank, you’ll be in for completely different types and classes of problems. Certapay incompatability was the first thing to come to mind, though that’s a trifle of a concern.

    Comment by Quotation — April 10, 2007 @ 8:33 pm

  2. Also, ISTR that you can order cheques by mail from any bank’s webbanking app now.

    Comment by Qutotation — April 10, 2007 @ 8:35 pm

  3. Apropos 3: No, those rates are inflated too.

    5: Done, which is how I know of the above.

    As for ING, the winning move here seems to be “invest large amounts, store middling amounts in ING, and keep a small amount in a bank-machine-accessible account when needed.”

    Comment by Mike Hoye — April 11, 2007 @ 10:17 am

  4. My first correspondence from Scotiabank was addressed to George. It went downhill from there.

    Comment by geofford — April 11, 2007 @ 11:23 am

  5. Actual email received today from my mortgage broker, since my 1yr fixed expires in June:

    Today we have heard that [mortgage provider’s renewal] rates are going to be increasing tomorrow, so if you would like to take advantage of the lower rates out there, you could lock in a rate with an approval today with someone else.

    Please give me a call or email me and I would be pleased to submit an application and lock in the lower rate for 4 months. I would just require your approval as well as knowing if your salary has changed or any other information and that’s it.

    Look forward to hearing from you.

    Comment by Quotation — April 11, 2007 @ 6:12 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Powered by WordPress