A Fool and His Money (Part 1)

Beware the cheating heart.


I’ve been reading with increasing frequency that it’s a fabulous time to negotiate a better interest rate with your lender.

In a world first, Choice has gone one step further by grouping borrowers for a better deal.

Their target was 1000 people prepared to look at switching loans.

In the first three days, they clocked 10,000.

Very interesting.

Back Story

I’m one of those morons who plays by the rules and believes what people say.

Having exhausted traditional communication channels, I took up my bank’s offer to chat via online banking.

After several weeks and follow ups, I got three phone calls from three bank staff in one day.

They began by saying they were recording me for training purposes.

I replied that I was recording them for blogging purposes.

They then said that:

  1. The lending market had indeed become more competitive.
  2. I was a valuable customer that they wanted to keep.
  3. To this end, they wanted to do the best they could for me.

I thanked them and said what I wanted: the same interest rate that their online subsidiary bank was offering, i.e. a 0.48% reduction that’d save me $2000 per year in interest.

They said that because their online subsidiary was run by IT staff – not banking staff – I wouldn’t get the same service.

I replied that, having enjoyed no service for many years, I wouldn’t miss it.

Then they said their subsidiary wasn’t for business owners like me.

I said that if they looked after me now, I’d stay with them and let them handle my investments in the future.

They said they’d get back to me.

They didn’t.


Gloves Off

Finally, I got fed up and tweeted:

My bank’s ‘Mortgage Retention Team’ isn’t even retenting my phone calls. Could be time for http://bit.ly/nzGKb8

Then I signed up and tweeted:

Right. I’m in. Who’s with me? http://www.choice.com.au/consumer-action/money/big-bank-switch/choice-big-bank-switch.aspx

Minutes later, my bank tweeted:

Hi Paul, saw your tweet – can I help from here? Pls follow so we can DM* & I’ll have our team follow up for you, thanks!

This was new. My bank must’ve had a keyword watching brief. I was impressed, but wary. Deciding to test their mettle, I tweeted:

Nice to hear from you! Back stories @ http://bit.ly/YN1z2 & http://bit.ly/aw6baO Still interested? Or am I a too-hard-basket case? 🙂

As we were chatting in the public domain, with feeds to my 16000 Twitter followers, I thought that’d be the end of it. But the bank replied:

Yes, I’m still interested & want to see how I can help – let’s DM & I’ll escalate to our team 🙂

I stood on the brink.

Phone calls had failed.

Online banking messages had failed.

Could social media be my salvation?

I had to find out.

So I followed^ my bank, enabling them to DM me.

And DM they did!


<<<<<<    INTERMISSION     >>>>>>

Exciting isn’t it?!

Have you had a word with your bank yet?

How’d you go?

If not, what’s stopping you?

Could your business not benefit from reduced interest payments?

Your comment will inform and perhaps even shape this narrative.

A bit like …

choose your own




Want more?  Head here for Part Two….


Paul Hassing | Founder & Senior Writer – The Feisty Empire


*  DM = Send a direct message (i.e. one not visible to the public).

^  Became one of their Twitter followers, thus enabling them to DM me.