CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - According to a new survey released by Bankrate.com the average out-of-market ATM fee has hit an all-time high at $4.69 which is up 2.6 percent from just a year ago. Bankrate says the main cause is banks trying to make up for profit losses because of continued low-interest rates on loans. This is the 11th straight year that fees have increased according to Bankrate.
The fees are a combination of what the ATM owner charges you, and what your bank charges you for using an ATM that doesn't belong to your bank.
In Cleveland the news is even worse. Cleveland is tied for third-highest average ATM fees, when compared to the top 25 metropolitan areas in the country. The average out of market ATM fee in Cleveland is $5.11. That amount ties Washington D.C.
1. Pittsburgh $5.19
2. New York $5.14
3. Cleveland $5.11 (tie)
3. Washington D.C. $5.11 (tie)
5. Atlanta $5.05
"The fact is fees are continuing to go up, but they are avoidable," says Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate's chief financial analyst. "Customers are not hostage to fees."
-Find your bank!
This is the easiest way to avoid fees altogether. Banks love when you don't use their ATMs. Most banks will help you find the nearest ATM through their app. Download it, use it and avoid the fee.
-Really free checking?
Among the banks surveyed by Bankrate only 38 percent of the banks have total free checking with no minimum balance with the only drawback being you gain no interest on that account.
Another 61 percent waive the fees if you use direct deposit.