569 how to close bank of america account step by step guide

How to Close Bank of America Account – Step-by-Step Guide

Are you considering closing your Bank of America account? Whether you’re dissatisfied with their high fees, want to switch to a more ethical bank, or simply no longer need the account, this step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of closing your Bank of America account smoothly and efficiently.

Reasons to Close Your Bank of America Account

High Monthly Maintenance Fees

One of the primary reasons people decide to close their Bank of America account is the high monthly maintenance fees. These fees can quickly add up, especially if you’re not maintaining a minimum balance or meeting other requirements to waive the fees. Over time, these fees can eat into your savings and make it difficult to reach your financial goals.

Bank of America offers various checking and savings accounts, each with its own set of fees and requirements. For example, the Bank of America Advantage Plus Banking checking account charges a $12 monthly maintenance fee unless you maintain a minimum daily balance of $1,500 or more, have a qualifying direct deposit of $250 or more, or are a student under 24 years old. If you find yourself constantly struggling to avoid these fees, it may be time to consider closing your account and switching to a bank with lower fees or no fees at all.

Funding of Fossil Fuel Industries

Another reason some people choose to close their Bank of America account is the bank’s funding of carbon-intensive industries, such as fracked oil and gas. According to a report by the Rainforest Action Network, Bank of America has provided billions of dollars in financing to fossil fuel companies since the Paris Agreement was signed in 2015. If you’re concerned about the environmental impact of your money and want to align your banking with your values, closing your Bank of America account and switching to a more sustainable bank may be the right choice for you.

There are several alternative banks that prioritize environmental sustainability and social responsibility. For example, Atmos is a climate-positive bank that offers checking and savings accounts with no monthly fees, no minimum balance requirements, and no overdraft fees. By choosing a bank like Atmos, you can feel good about where your money is going and know that your banking is having a positive impact on the planet.

Steps to Close Your Bank of America Account

Open a New Account at Another Bank

Before closing your Bank of America account, it’s important to open a new account at another bank. This will ensure that you have a place to transfer your money and continue managing your finances without interruption. When choosing a new bank, look for one that offers the services and features you need, such as online and mobile banking, bill pay, and ATM access.

Consider opening a checking and savings account at a bank with no monthly maintenance or service fees, such as Atmos. This will help you avoid the high fees that may have prompted you to close your Bank of America account in the first place. Make sure to fund your new account with enough money to cover any outstanding checks or pending transactions from your old account.

Transfer Recurring Bills and Direct Deposits

Once you have a new account set up, the next step is to transfer any recurring bills or direct deposits from your old Bank of America checking account to your new account. This includes things like rent or mortgage payments, utility bills, subscription services, and paycheck deposits.

Contact each company or employer and provide them with your new account information. Be sure to give them enough time to process the change before closing your old account. Keep in mind that some companies may require you to fill out a form or provide additional documentation to complete the transfer.

Transfer Remaining Funds and Close Account

After you’ve transferred your recurring bills and direct deposits, it’s time to move the remaining funds from your Bank of America account to your new account. You can do this via ACH transfer, which is typically free and takes a few business days to process. Alternatively, you can write yourself a check from your Bank of America account and deposit it into your new account.

Once your Bank of America account balance is zero and all pending transactions have cleared, you can close the account. Contact Bank of America customer service or visit a local branch to initiate the account closure process. Be prepared to provide identification and answer security questions to verify your identity.

Destroy Debit Cards and Checks

After successfully closing your Bank of America account, destroy any associated debit cards and unused checks. This will help prevent fraud and identity theft. If you have a debit card with a customized card number, make sure to update any accounts or subscriptions that use that card number with your new debit card information.

If you use a digital debit card, such as Apple Pay or Google Pay, remove your Bank of America card from the digital wallet and add your new debit card in its place. This will ensure that you can continue making purchases and transactions without interruption.

Methods to Close Your Bank of America Account

Close Your Account by Phone

One way to close your Bank of America account is by phone. To do this, call the Bank of America customer service number and speak with a representative. Explain that you want to close your account and follow their instructions. You may be asked to provide identifying information, such as your account number and Social Security number, to verify your identity.

Keep in mind that closing your account over the phone may require you to send a written request or visit a branch in person to complete the process. The customer service representative will be able to provide you with more information on the specific steps you need to take.

Close Your Account at a Bank Branch

Another way to close your Bank of America account is by visiting a local branch in person. This may be a good option if you prefer to handle the process face-to-face or have questions that you want to ask in person. To close your account at a branch, bring a government-issued ID, such as a driver’s license or passport, and any remaining debit cards or checks associated with the account.

Inform the banker that you want to close your account and follow their instructions. They may ask you to sign a form or provide a written request to complete the process. Make sure to ask about any fees or charges associated with closing the account and ensure that all pending transactions have cleared before leaving the branch.

What to Know After Closing Your Bank of America Account

Confirm Successful Account Closure

After closing your Bank of America account, it’s important to confirm that the account has been successfully closed. You should receive a confirmation letter or email from Bank of America within a few days to a week after initiating the closure. If you don’t receive confirmation, contact customer service to inquire about the status of your account.

It’s also a good idea to check your credit report after closing your account to ensure that the account is reported as closed and that there are no outstanding balances or fees. You can request a free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) once per year at AnnualCreditReport.com.

Check Your Credit Score

Closing a bank account typically does not have a direct impact on your credit score. However, if you have any outstanding balances or unpaid fees on the account, it could be reported to the credit bureaus as delinquent, which can negatively impact your score. Make sure to resolve any outstanding issues before closing the account to avoid this scenario.

In some cases, closing a long-standing account or one with a high balance could slightly lower your credit score by reducing the average age of your accounts or increasing your credit utilization ratio. However, this impact is usually minimal and temporary, especially if you have other accounts in good standing. If you’re concerned about the impact of closing your account on your credit score, consider keeping the account open with a small balance or closing it gradually over time.

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