Tell us about your checking account experiences!

Last month, I gotten a return fee of 29$ for a 10$ credit card payment because 300$ was on hold.. which I called numerous times but the person on the phone basically told me that there was nothing they could do, so I was going to close the account, which they didn’t even let me because they said that 300$ was on hold and it’s in the negative which I didn’t understand either.. because even with the money on hold don’t you still have my money? Anyways after writing my very long story on one of these forums usaa decided to refund the 29$, so I decided to keep the account since my insurance and credit card is with usaa.. but I only deposit what I needed to pay those bills. And this month decide to put a hold on 70$ again.. and my auto insurance was automatic payment.. which I deposited money 3 business days early just to be sure that it doesn’t get taken out without the funds.. but again the hold charged me 29$.. is this going to be a reaccouring thing because I really don’t have time to watch my accounts like a hawk to make sure that holds and whatever else you guys decide to do will keep charging me money that I don’t have, I am already living on a budge..banks are suppose to make your life easier, why is it making things more difficult on my end????

Hello @Viet589, I understand deposit holds can be an inconvenience and I can assure you this is never our intent. As with many financial institutions, we place deposit holds to ensure funds are collected upon before the full deposit amount is made available on the account. We are unable to release a deposit hold prior to the available date provided. Additionally, to help prevent any negative impact, when using our mobile app to transfer funds, any amounts that are subject to holds is displayed before finalizing and submitting your authorization to continue with the transfer.


If you were to set up a direct deposit or transfer from your external bank to USAA there would not be a hold placed. -Colleen


Phantom Cobra, no one comes back to comment about results because obviously 3 years after your comment, the same problems still exist!  USAA doesn't care about holds on deposits!  THEY JUST DON'T CARE!

Bravo for pointing out USAA'S laissez faire attitude concerning banking problems, particularly their incomprehensible hold policy on checking account deposits!  What a disgrace for a company I've been using since 1966!  It certainly is NOT the company I remember from the early days.  As they've grown, they've forgotten that their customers are what keeps them in business.  This hold situation is unique to them and needs to be addressed by someone who actually CARES!  



I maintain multiple checking, savings, credit cards and credit lines with Wells Fargo Bank, Chase Bank and Pentagon Federal Credit Union. Both Wells and Chase have physical branches in my home town, plus have well run international operations that work, I also have a dozen other credit cards I use to earn airline miles and hotel points around the world. Do not have any Debit cards, as the risks and lack of protection makes credit cards a much better method. I set all of these up due to past multiple bad experiences with USAA FSB. This gives me solid backup in all phases of banking. Everyone should have multiple full banking sources setup and available at a moment's notice. Competition is good for the consumer. And you get backup support if one supplier fails to perform to YOUR satisfaction.
I do that also. Old National, Chase, and Navy Federal. USAA has ONE benefit over the others, but fails to keep up in several areas.
I also have several different investments accounts with Vanguard Mutual Funds and T.Rowe Price Mutual Funds. That includes a mix of IRAs, ROTHs, Brokerage, 401(k)s, rollovers and taxable investment accounts. ! do have a small money market account with USAA. Also have several savings accounts with three other banks that I use as full backup banking centers. All of this is maintained in Quicken Premier Software with daily download of all transactional data. Both Vanguard and T Rowe Price have solid funds and generally good customer service. Their performance results is generally good. Their fees are low with Vanguard having rock bottom fees. The combined total size of all investments is seven figures. Compared over time to USAA, both Vanguard and T Rowe Price my measured net performance beats USAA..

I have banked with most of the large corp banks and found there service or support very poor. So I made the switch from corp banks to USAA. When I made the switch i looked at many factors such as products offers, competitive pricing points, expertise in industry, leading changes in the financial Market and one of the most important is the way they treat my family as members. When i compare my conversations with them or any other bank/credit union there is no comparison. These things are important to me.


Pros: The best mobile apps, awesome articles, website ease of use, continuous technology enhancements on the mobile app, banking security and a awesome website.


Cons: The deposit rates on savings accounts, loss of cash back on the checking accounts and no way to send a message via the mobile app.



Dear Batman23,

We truly appreciate your feedback and your continued participation in the community!


Thank you again for posting!

I've had a DDA account with USAA for ~25 years, back when the only deposit option was drive to Texas or mail it in.  USAA has always provided postage paid deposit envelopes. 


The best part about the account is there are no fees.   Some things have a small charge now that were free before, cashier's checks spring to mind.  I've needed two in the time I've had my account so that is not too worrisome. 


USAA has innovated.  The Deposit @ UPS Store was great (you took the check to UPS Store and they sent it to Texas overnight).    USAA was the first retail bank to use remote deposit (Deposit@Home).  They've developed that further by incorporating Deposit@Mobile.   Of course you can still go to the UPS Store (most of them) and make a deposit, but it is immediate not sent to Texas. 


It is worth noting that USAA offered to help government employees with direct deposit during shutdowns.   I don't know of any local bank that does that. 


No bank is perfect for everyone, and I think that many people are annoyed by the extended hold times for Deposit@Mobile deposits.  While it is clear in the disclosures that there may be a very long hold time on these, it does cause much consternation.   I've never experienced that, but for larger items I simply mail them in or go to UPS.   A paper item at a teller in Texas will always be fastest so sometimes you have to mail them in, or FedEx them in (we get a FedEx discount if you sign up through USAA Affiliate Services link). 


I think the fairly rapid increase in USAA FSB customers has put a strain on the customer service staff.  A number of complaints on here have noted that, and unfortunately I have experienced that myself.  It was not a huge dilemma, but I should be able to resolve things with one call. 


USAA fraud protection is very good.  I've been called a few times now when a debit card or credit card has had suspiscious transcations.  Once my debit card was used in two states 3000 miles apart but only a few minutes between transactions.  USAA sent a replacement by FedEx and had the cash back in my account by the next morining.  The credit card was really me, I guess I'm just suspiscious!  I'm still glad they called.   I've had Amex call several days after fraudulent charges from the Ukraine were made.  Time is of the essence and I think USAA does a good job on that front. 


I think that the broadening of eligibility, and the downturn in the economy made online banking a bit more problematic.  The extended holds on mobile deposit seems to exacerbate that problem.  USAA is not alone in having long holds for such deposits as this article from the Detroit Free Press notes.   While these holds are necessary in the current climate because there are some people who will attempt to defraud the bank, those who are living check to check often find it a problem.   The bank can't change the hold policy without significant risk, but perhaps more education on funds availability and the different deposit channels could be done.   We sacrifice quick access for the convenience of mobile deposit, we have to decide what is more important and make our deposit based on that. 


For me the convenience and no fees make USAA valuable to me and they provide my main DDA account.  I've opened a CD at a local credit union (they had a promotion at 2%) and I can cash checks there against that account if I need more than I can get out of the ATM. That may happen once or twice a year and that is just recently. 


Free of most fees, fairly good on line bill pay with at no charge, and almost all of the customer service interactions are done quickly.   Although I may only call once or twice a year I may not be the best judge. 


I'm keeping USAA for my checking account. I may shop some time deposit accounts around to get the best rate, but I think everyone does that.