Thursday, January 18, 2018

Tangerine and Meridian

Note: I would like to say that the transfer of money to my Meridian Account was showing up on Friday, January 19 first thing in the morning and was dated January 18. This is effectively 4 business days before money can actually be used.

I have a reserve fund that I have kept in Tangerine since 2003. I put it into an ING account at that time because the interest rate was good. At the time the interest from banks was pathetic. For the last while the interest rate has been quite low for Tangerine at 1%.

People I know say that you can phone Tangerine every 6 months and get the rate that they give to new customers for 6 months. Apparently they will do this if you threaten to take out your money. Personally I do not want to have to play such games with companies I deal with.

I had met someone who works at Meridian and she suggested that it was a better place to keep such funds. She said the interest rates were better and that they were good to deal with. I looked online and the interest rate was 1.4% compared to Tangerine's 1%. With Tangerine (ING) I had set up my account online and gave them the banking information to do the transfers.

With Meridian you have to print off the form for transfers and either take a sample cheque to them or get the information certified by your bank. Either way, it means a trip to them or your bank. So on Friday, December 29, 2017 I took a sample cheque and the form to the closes Meridian branch. The teller said that I would get an email when the account was ready for transfers.

I had expected an email via my email address as they asked for that. When a week later I had not yet received looked online at my account to see if the ability to transfer funds had been set up. I had no such luck, but I did find that they had a secure messages system. There was a message about me setting up my account.

In the meantime I got a message from Tangerine saying that they were offering 2.4% on new money. So on January 4, 2018 I transferred the balk of the emergency fund top up to Tangerine. I looked everywhere to see how long this 2.4% applied for but could not find that information. Anyone I talked to say that it would probably be for 6 months.

Finally on January 10, 2018 I replied to the secure message on Meridian asking when my account will be set up for transfers. I checked on January 13, 2017 and although I did not get a reply, a message dated January 11, 2018 was there saying that my account was set up for transfers. I guess that they expect to check every day for messages. This is rather silly.

It took them some 10 business days to set up my account and there is no way I would spend my time checking for messages every day online. By the way, when I was in the branch of Meridian I was told the account would be set up soon. They never said or implied in anywhere it would take so long.

Meridian transfers are more restrictive than Tangerine. Tangerine does not have a limit that I know about. Meridian says the maximum for a transfer is $10,000. Tangerine says transfer might take up to 3 business days, but all mine have been done the same or next day. Meridian says transfers take 3 business days.

At the branch they were very good at deflecting questions. They said they had a limited of $10,000 in one transfer in one day. When I questioned this the teller said that it was in case someone made a mistake. I asked if I could get online statements and this change was done to my file. I did not see any way to do this online. I asked about online tax forms and was told that legally that have to send out paper ones. I mentioned that I have been getting online tax forms from TD Bank for years. This was an interesting exchange.

I did a transfer to Meridian first thing Monday morning, January 15, 2018. I will see how long this takes. I will write further about my experience with Meridian. I had never dealt with a credit union before.

So far it is disappointing. They said that transfers would take 3 business days. This is now the afternoon of January 18, 2018 and there is no sign yet that the Meridian has taken the money from the bank account and put it into theirs. This is the third business day by any account.

Their transfers are obvious not an automated process and it is obvious that Tangerine's is. For my latest transfer to Tangerine it was a rather large amount and it went through the same day. The Meridian transfer is quite disappointing, but I knew when I was in the Meridian branch that they were behind in automation compared to our banks.

On my other blog I wrote yesterday about National Bank of Canada (TSX-NA, OTC-NTIOF)... learn more. Next, I will write about Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (TSX-CM, NYSE-CM)... learn more on Friday, January 19, 2018 around 5 pm

This blog is meant for educational purposes only, and is not to provide investment advice. Before making any investment decision, you should always do your own research or consult an investment professional. I do research for my own edification and I am willing to share. I write what I think and I may or may not be correct.

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