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How To Stop Using Banks

Posted in dear diarrhea by Marcus Del Greco on February 21st, 2007

This was my most disappointing Google search in recent memory:

how to stop using banks – Google Search

Nothing.  Nada.  Not a shred of data online about how to stop using banks.  Resistance is indeed futile.

If anyone has information about how to stop using banks (why won’t creditors accept cash, is it not “legal tender”?) please send it my way.  This would mean, how to stop using banks while incurring the lowest expense and least inconvenience.

I hate banks.

8 Responses to 'How To Stop Using Banks'

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  1. on February 21st, 2007 at 1:05 am

    […] p using banks while incurring the lowest expense and least inconvenience. I hate banks. How To Stop Using Banks […]

  2. Ellis Emefty said,

    on February 21st, 2007 at 6:40 am

    William Burroughs has a great piece on banks in, IIRC, “The Ticket that Exploded”. The gist of it is that banks are a mid-tier manifestation of Control, providing centralization of financial and personal information for the upper tiers.

    The reason, incidentally, that creditors will not accept cash through the mail is that cash is untraceable, and there are too many points along the processing route that it can be disappeared by their employees, or simply lost in the mail. In theory, they should accept it, and really, have to accept it, if you are able to show up at their offices and pay in cash, get a receipt, etc. In fact, its a crime to refuse cash as a method of payment.

  3. Sue said,

    on May 16th, 2007 at 8:36 am

    I could not agree with you more! I HATE BANKS! I got laid off and the credit union where I work knows this. Chescks were slow to start coming in. So far this year they have charged me $800.00 in NSF fees. Some of these fees were because the bank chose to hold checks till funds were low then hit me with a fee. I know this because the bills I paid in person (making sure the money WAS there; I had just deposited funds) with a check were electronic and I was told they would post immediatly; but NO, the bank waits till funds are low enough to hit me with a NSF fee, then they post. I am seriously thinking of pulling out of the bank, keep MY OWN MONEY, and just use Money Orders or Cashier Checks, they are a whole lot cheaper than $25 a pop for being 1 cent over.

    I don’t know how they expect you to catch up when they keep setting you back. That $800 would have paid alot of bills for me.

    THANK YOU for letting me sound off!

  4. George Brackston said,

    on August 12th, 2008 at 8:39 pm

    I found this while doing a search for how to stop using banks myself. I have my goals and I have a plan to stop using banks but I will continue to keep a checking acount open at a small bank just in case I ever need it for emergency purposes. Same with a credit card. I stoped keeping track but to date I have been charged over $6700 in NSF fees, processing fees, maintenance fees ect. I have used every bank imageinable and have found that Wells Fargo is the worst about socking it to you when your down. I have had good luck with most banks about talking my way out of fees but not with Wells Fargo. They have a policy in effect that under no circumstances will they reverse any fee unless you provide substantial proof that it was their error. First thing to do is to consolidate and pay off as much debt as possible. This sort of thing is like a stone rolling down hill. Once you pay off one credit card use the money you were using to pay it off on something ellse. Once all of your debt is paid off pick a small home town bank with no other branches that offers good service and is insured by the FDIC. This bank should be close to you so you can use it often. Open a savings account and for one year put all of that money you were paying bills with into the account. Keep in mind you should never have more than $100,000 in one bank or the FDIC won’t insure you. Open a checking account with the same bank and close all other bank accounts you have open. Now you have a fressh start. Apply for the best credit card you can get with a limit between $1000 and $2000. Make sure there is no annual fee for using the card. Once you get it activate it and don’t use it unless you have an emergency. Then make sure and pay it off compleatly before the bill is due. Never let intrest accrue. All this being said you will need a safe place to keep cash in your home. You should have approximatly $2000 in cash on hand for your monthly living expenses. Now then you have one savings account, one checking account and one credit card. Moniter then daily. Make it a routine like checking your email. This way you wont ever have any surprises. If you keep a large amount in the checking account and never use it unless you have to, never use the credit card unless you have to and always pay it off in full imideatly, and put an exact amount in your saveings account every month the same day you get paid you should be good. Use this bank for everything. Cash your pay check there and put money in your saveings before you leave. Purchase your cashiers checks or money orders there and use them to pay your bills, not your checking account. This ensures your checking account isn’t used and your bills get paid with no snags. If you have the luxury of useing cash to pay for something DO IT!!! A variation is to set all your bills up electronically to be paid by your bank and make sure you put enough money into the account every month to cover them plus 25% extra for cushioning. If you do this remember to check you account daily. Make an excell spread sheet with all of the information about every bill you have; websites, phone numbers account numbers, access codes, amount due and when, ect. Last but not least if you are fortunate enough in the future to have more than $100,000 in the bank then instead of looking for another bank to use invest it into something real. Like real estate, gold, art, education or even better go out and live life. See peru, snorkel the great barrier reaf or take a train tour of europe. Hope this helps.

  5. tammy said,

    on October 16th, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    Hi George,

    I felt your post was more geared toward being financially free rather than about not using banks. I think what people are looking for here is how to get around banks all together, Do you have any ideas? Would love to hear them. :)

  6. James Woods said,

    on December 15th, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    Avoiding banks (and their IRS record keeping) would be very difficult. However, an individual can reduce his/her banking footprint by using nothing but cash – not mailing anything to anyone with a signature (checks, money orders). And, by keeping the absolute minimum deposit to maintain ONLY the unavoidable check cashing service. .

    . No credit cards. No checks. No bank savings accounts. No bank loans of any kind. Try to cash checks in the bank on which it was written, if possible. Some will still honor their own checks without opening an account..

    Keep it all a secret because now you’re a bank. All your money is cash — in your personal possession. Be careful what you say. Don’t carry much cash.

    The world will shrink down to just those cash transactions that you drive or walk to obtain. You will need to plan ahead. No more credit card to fix a flat, pay the hospital bill or buy a hamburger.

    You will forced to become responsible person. All of the pay-later convenience will be gone. But, it’s really not that hard to do.

  7. Christopher said,

    on February 27th, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Hey guys! I feel all of your pain, as i myself was looking for a way to stop incurring charges as a ‘mentally vunerable young adult’, though the banks think this is a great opportunity to make a bit of extra cash and abuse my shortcomings

    I would like to inform you all of the zeitgeist movement, which is in summary this: a completly new redesigned global society without money or labour. We obviously have the resources to automate all production and agriculture, and the only other jobs are meaningless in a logical society. nobody really needs to work in a shoe shop , for example, when you can just get the item online from an automated factory. We are growing quite swiftly as a movement and are looking to build some of our first ecological moneyless modern cities quite soon. If youve had enough of all the bullshit and 76,000 people dieing from poverty everyday then please, do join the zeitgeist movement. If you guys want any more information, send me an email at chrisishere_118@hotmail.com and watch zeitgeist: addendum online to get the gist of our movement.

    In the meantime i wish you all the best in not getting completly raped by the banks, im having hellish time too. I thought originally that the co-operative bank was an ethical one, what the hell was i thinking :P

  8. Jon said,

    on August 22nd, 2011 at 9:36 am


    It can and should be done. I went without a bank account for five years. I just got sick of being robbed and screwed by one bank after another.

    If your worried about carrying cash, consider this. Over my whole life, here is how it breaks down:

    -Losing money (dropping it, forgetting somewhere) = essentially $0.00
    I’m sure I misplaced a ten somewhere but never enough to freak out

    -Having money robbed or stolen = $0.00
    …and I’ve lived in some shady places, slept in some shady places, and hung out in some shady bars in my life

    -Having a bank charge me ridiculous fees ($175 for $9.00 worth of overdraft, etc…) = $2500 (give or take)

    I came to the conclusion that my money is safer in my pocket than it is in a bank a long time ago.

    The above amount does not include the amount that has been taken from my wife. Just the last one was $900 of overdrafts on $128 merchant screw up (that was the children’s Christmas money by the way). If your wondering if the new law protects you it doesn’t cover reoccurring automatic payments or maybe even some online purchases.

    Buy a fireproof safe. Keep some money in your pocket and the larger amount in your sock if you need. Bury it in the backyard. Anything but a bank! It can be a bit of a pain to cash your checks, pay bills, etc. Sometimes it might cost a bit more but at least it is a known cost, not a surprise right before Christmas. I think wal-mart charges $3.00 to cash a check.

    At the very least stop using debit/credit cards. Banks get paid every time you swipe it. PAY IN CASH.

    The last thing these legalized racketeers and extortionists need is more money.

    I opened an account just for the occasional online purchase two years ago. I got a letter this weekend saying they want $7.00 a month just to have an account and $5.00 a month to use my debit card. $144 a year for me to loan them money.

    Off to close out another account. I am not opening another, ever.

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