Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Computers are stoopid (How the National Bank of Canada done fukt up)

Dear 19,

So here's my story. Last year, I found out that I was paying twice the municipal and school taxes I was supposed to because I was paying the city directly but I was also unknowingly putting the same amount in a (hidden) bank account meant as a provision for municipal and school taxes when making my mortgage payments. No one had told me about this and I had only noticed this discrepancy once I realized just how much I was paying through the nose. No one at the bank noticed, the account just grew and grew. I had to really bang down their door to explain the whole thing. I finally managed to get a chunk of that money back. This happened last year right before quitting my job...which was perfect. I got 1800$ back.

So earlier this year, I noticed that my municipal tax payments basically doubled. I thought it was maybe normal as property value was going up but I eventually found out that I've been once again paying way too much. I've been barely surviving these past few months and am now renting out my condo because I could just not afford the extra 200$ a month I was paying. Long story short, tonight, I looked at the whole thing carefully and realized that the bank is basing it's estimates on what was withdrawn from the account last year (presumably to pay taxes). Of course, last year, I withdrew 1800$ which was in excess to begin with and which was also, oh yes, MY FUCKING MONEY!

I don't know what kind of unorthodox maneuver they had to follow to withdraw that money for me in the first place but it's clear that whoever designed that system didn't think too far ahead. But what's worse is that humans were also involved. They had to initiate the payment adjustments and they knew way more than I did to begin with.

It's just fucked up that I had to claim money from a bank only to have it steal it back from me a year later. I can't even imagine how I'm going to be able to explain this one...especially since they recently transferred my mortgage account to another branch.

Fuck you National Bank.


Master of the Craw said...

So wait, as standard practice the Bank will set aside taxes for you to pay for municipal and school taxes?

How is that at all the bank's responsibility? That's like if whenver I purchased a box of condoms the bank was notified and immediately made a small withdrawal that it put into an abortion/college fund to use in case the condom failed.

Karl Hungus said...

...and every time you buy alcohol with Interac, they make a small withdrawal to put towards a liver transplant.

Karl Hungus said...

...or abortion.

Napoleon Bonerpants said...

It's apparently common practice, so common, in fact, that they take for granted that you already know about it. I actually don't mind the idea but I can't stand the fact that the bank bends all the programming rules in its know, like rounding up the cents in all your creditory transactions. But clearly, it's to their advantage to hold as much of your money as possible for cash flow so it's not at all a service to you.

Dementor said...

How the hell else are they supposed to make billions of profits even during the worst financial crisis?

Barbarosa said...

Master of the Craw, I worked for that same bank. Here is why the bank does it:

If a home owner does not pay their taxes, the government will seize the house, pay the taxes with it (by selling it I assume, but I forget).

Anyhow, the government's rights outweigh the banks, so the former gets paid first.

Not only that, but people have a tendency to wreck the shit out of houses they've been kicked out of, leaving the bank with a house worth much less than they gave money out for and that's without counting the money the government took.

While at the employ of the bank, someone told me a story of some people who got kicked out and blocked every drain and turned every tap on to flood the house.

tl;dr The bank forces you to set the money aside in order to protect its investment.

Master of the Craw said...

Ok, then why not let the person know? Also, if that's their impetus, wouldn't that also require that they withold any and all taxes that may possibly result in your getting your shit auctioned off?