December 14, 2006
1) Shady financial practices. I had a Citibank card with a 7.9% APR “for life” on balance transfers. This was back when I had a lot of credit card debt (I currently have none, and I hope I never will again). One day Citibank sent me mail that said that they were changing the rate to 11.9%. I called them, adamant that I had 7.9% APR for life, and they said, basically, like it or lump it, they can legally change their rate at any time and I could either pay off my balance within 30 days or accept the new rate. Fortunately I had another option and got my balance the hell off that card. This was in either 2002 or 2003. I closed the account.
2) Fraud. In late 2004, I think, someone used a credit card number of mine (a card that I never used but had sitting around, which ultimately got bought out by Citibank from another less sucky bank) to rack up a couple of hundred dollars worth of charges at a Target in Southern California. I didn’t even notice the charges until Citibank’s fraud division called and suggested it might be fraud. It was. “We’ll send you the appropriate paperwork, don’t worry, just fill it out and send it back.” The paperwork never arrived. I got a nastygram a month later saying my account was 60 days past due. I called Citibank, upset. They said: “Either pay the charge or the account will go into 90 days past due and your credit record will be affected.” Nevermind that it was fraud. Like a sad chump, I paid it. I finally got the fraud paperwork and sent it in. They refunded the fraud amount, but NOT THE FINANCE CHARGES. Assholes. I cancelled the card.
As an added insult, my credit report (which I received when we were applying for the loan on our new house) lists the account as “seriously delinquent.” Thanks, Citibank. Thanks. Really. I look forward to sorting that out.
3) Homeowner’s insurance idiocy or scam, you decide. My second mortgage on the house I live in and just sold got bought by Citibank. Mind you that I didn’t have a choice in the matter. Every six months or so they send a rude letter insisting that they don’t have proof of us having homeowner’s insurance, and that they’re going to charge us for their own coverage if we don’t prove it. So, every six months or so we have to call our insurance agent and have them fax the proof of the insurance, again. It’s a pain in the ass.
Well, now we’ve sold our house, except, guess what?! Citibank won’t “release” the loan because, you guessed it, they claim we don’t have insurance.
There are only two possibilities for this, as I see it. 1) Extreme incompetence, or 2) Willful attmept to foist inflated (2x to 3x the premium) insurance (i.e. scam) on us. Either way, in my opinion, they suck.