Well..I did it – I made a big mistake. But I was all ready to lay blame on the bank. It all started when my husband informed me a few weeks ago that our credit union had been calling him and leaving him messages to call them. He asked me if I knew why. I said I did not know why, seeing as I have been paying the two loans (a car loan and a debt consolidation loan – I know, we have made some mistakes when it comes to debt, but we’re working on it..ugh) we have with them on time. I asked him to try to answer the call the next time they call. The only problem is there is no rhyme or reason as to when they call. They could call on a Saturday at 6 pm or any day of the week from 8 am to 9 pm.
I decided to go online and check our account on their website. (I pay all our bills through a different bank, as the credit union is only being used for our loans.) Well, first I had to set up an account, as I hadn’t previously done so. That takes 24 hours. That was about 2-3 weeks ago. I get that all set up and then the yard sale, bake sale and all this fun blogging started. 🙂 So I was slightly side tracked. This week I was back on that trail and I had my husband call them (well, I called and sat on hold until a live person answered and then handed the phone to my husband). Why did my husband have to call? Because the loans are in his name and they are not allowed to speak with me about the accounts until he grants permission. Which he did immediately, and handed the phone right back to me. So I get on the phone and I pull up the credit union website and my regular bank account. This way I’m able to compare when my regular bank account was being drafted and when it was hitting the credit union. You see, we were being hit with late charges when I was paying them on time. I couldn’t figure this out at all.
Then I noticed that it would appear that they were applying the payments to the wrong accounts. Like applying payment A to account B and payment B to account A when it should have been payment A going to account A and payment B going to account B. Is this too confusing? Anyway, so I look at my bank vs the credit union and I look at the account numbers…it’s then I see it…
Back up for a second – in March, our credit union sent out notices letting the members know that all the account numbers were changing. The second notice gave us our new account numbers. I immediately went and changed the account numbers with my online banking.
Have you guessed what I did? Yeah, I switched the account numbers incorrectly with my online bill pay. So I was overpaying one account and underpaying another account with the credit union. So as soon as I realized what had happened, and that this had been going on since March, I asked the customer representative if there was some way she could have some grace and apply all the extra money from account A (where I was overpaying) to account B (where I was underpaying and had accrued late charges). I also apologized that my husband hadn’t called them sooner (in his defense, he just assumed they were calling about promotions since I confirmed with him I was paying the loans on time) and that I hadn’t set up an actual online account with them sooner to monitor this. She was really sweet and assured me she would send a message to the manager asking that all this be straightened out.
Lord willing and the creek don’t rise – it’ll be corrected. Otherwise? I’ll owe a lot of money on one account, and be ahead on the other account, for this mistake of switching account numbers. It’s another lesson in pride for me. I pay all the bills and do take pride in the fact that I pay the bills on time and keep everything neat and tidy in this “area”. I have all bills being paid online and I make sure that we don’t get hit with late charges. I monitor all the bank activity to ensure we’re not being hit with any fraud.
I should have set up the online account with the credit union as soon as we had the loans with them and I didn’t. I also should have made sure to keep an eye on what was going on there, including what I was doing when I changed the account numbers with my online bill pay. 5 whole months of paying it this way…why didn’t they send us something in writing? I have no idea why they didn’t. It’s really odd. Maybe it’s not as dire as I think it is, since they never did mail anything and never left detailed messages for my husband. To me it’s an emergency because this could affect his credit and I just can’t handle having a bank think we’re not paying something on time or properly. I like perfection when I can control that…ohhhhh, yikes…that could be a whole ‘nother post….realizing what your husband has, sweetly and lovingly, told you that you might have an issue letting go of? Yeah, sometimes I like to control things. Sigh…I am human though! I make mistakes, folks. Big surprise, right? ha! 🙂