You might remember that whole general strike in Oakland last month. I went down to the main protest at midday and listened to some speakers. One guy was very adamant about moving our money out of large banks.
I've been thinking about this for a while, but my general lethargy kept me from doing it. This was a good wake-up call, partly because Chase has been nickel and diming me and more to the point, Chase is one of the companies that put all of us in the mess we now find ourselves in.
I was thinking about a credit union until a colleague at Mills talked up Mechanics Bank. They have been around forever and they are a local bank. They did not get involved in all the craziness of the early part of this century. They invest locally. Their closest branch isn't that far from my house and better still, they promise to pay any ATM fee any other bank charges. My plan is to use their ATM as often as possible and only impose on their generosity in special cases.
I took so long to write this because I've been moving my money slowly, but the last check I wrote on the Chase account cleared today, so I got a cashier's check and will be depositing it in my Mechanics account this week, an account I opened about a month ago, so there will no longer be long holds on the checks I deposit. Because I have direct deposit and because I'm a geezer, Mechanics has no monthly fees.
I do a lot of stuff to make my life simpler and to have a smaller negative impact on the world, from recycling to not having a car, even not having a cell phone and giving money to those swine. This is a good step in that direction and if you can make it work in your life, I recommend this move to all my readers.