14 Mistakes Bank of America Account Holders Make That Cost Them Money

Uncover the costly errors Bank of America account holders often make.

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Updated July 11, 2024
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With various financial institutions to choose from, it can be difficult to decide where to do your banking. 

Bank of America (BoA) offers several financial products, including checking and savings accounts, CDs, loans, and credit cards.

Credit cards offered through Bank of America can earn cash back rewards and have a $0 Liability Guarantee if your card is lost or stolen.

If you’re a Bank of America bank user, here are 14 mistakes you could be making that are costing you money.

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Paying a fee to transfer money

prima91/Adobe The Zelle mobile app on the iPhone screen.

With Bank of America's Zelle, you can send, request, and receive money from family, friends, or vendors—free of charge!

Zelle can help you pay your rent, gift a family member money, or split a bill between friends at a restaurant so you can keep more cash in your wallet.

You can send money to their bank accounts within minutes by linking your bank account and entering the recipient's U.S. mobile number or email.

Not locking your card to prevent fraud

adragan/Adobe Access to credit cards is restricted and blocked.

The BoA website and mobile app allow you to lock your card quickly if you lose it or see suspicious activity on your account. If the card turns up later, you can always log back in and unlock it to use it again.

Bank of America provides a $0 Liability Guarantee, meaning you're not liable for unauthorized debit or credit card transactions as long as you promptly report them.

Logging into your account manually

Kaspars Grinvalds/Adobe Woman securing her gadgets with two-factor authentication.

Time is money. You can simply use your face or fingerprint instead of fumbling with your password whenever you want to log in to the Bank of America mobile app.

To set it up, in the mobile app, select Touch ID or Face ID for Apple devices and fingerprint login for Android. It will use the face or fingerprint data you've already stored on your device.

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Try it

Depositing checks in person

Andrey Popov/Adobe A man capturing a cheque image for remote deposit.

Are you still driving to your local branch to deposit a check? You can deposit a check into your bank account in the BoA mobile app.

You can endorse the check by taking a picture of the front and back, selecting the account where you want it deposited, and selecting “Submit Deposit.”

You should receive a confirmation message that the deposit is being processed. You can then save, print, or email a copy of the check.

Not setting up autopay

Prostock-studio/Adobe A lady is clutching a debit card for online shopping.

Setting up autopay is an excellent way to ensure you pay all your bills on time and avoid annoying late fees.

With Bill Pay, you can safely and easily pay your bills from the Bank of America website or mobile app.

You can choose to make a single payment or set up recurring payments. The payment may be processed as early as the next business day.

Not checking your account balance

monticellllo/Adobe The Bank of America logo on laptop screen.

With Bank of America's My Balance, the app's front page can show your account balance, so you can quickly see how much money you have left.

To enable it, select My Balance on the mobile app's homepage, then hit "Set Up Now." Read and accept the terms and conditions and choose the account you want to see on the homepage.

Paying overdraft fees

Srdjan/Adobe Woman got frustrated asshe had hit her account limit.

By signing up for Bank of America's Balance Connect, you may have fewer overdrafts, returned checks, or declined transactions.

You can connect up to five other bank accounts to your checking account. If there aren’t enough funds to cover a transaction, BoA will automatically transfer money.

Not ordering personalized checks

Andrey Popov/Adobe A businesswoman is putting her signature on a check.

If you want personalized checks, you can easily order them through Bank of America.

Go to the mobile app or BoA website and choose the image, saying, and a custom font. The app and website also let you verify or change your address and check the status of your order.

Paying with your physical card

PhotoGranary/Adobe Mobile payment and digital wallet service by Apple.

A digital wallet makes transactions with participating merchants quick, easy, and secure. It also ensures you have all of your cards with you so you can maximize your rewards.

You can add eligible credit and debit cards from Bank of America to your digital wallet and still receive all the benefits and rewards from your cards. BoA is compatible with Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay.

Earn cash back on everyday purchases with this rare account

Want to earn cash back on your everyday purchases without using a credit card? With the Discover®️ Cashback Debit Checking account (member FDIC), you can earn 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases each month!2

With no credit check to apply and no monthly fees to worry about, you can earn nearly passive income on purchases you’re making anyway — up to an extra $360 a year!

This rare checking account has other great perks too, like access to your paycheck up to 2 days early with Early Pay, no minimum deposit or monthly balance requirements, over 60K fee-free ATMs, and the ability to add cash to your account at Walmart stores nationwide.

Don’t leave money on the table — it only takes minutes to apply and it won’t impact your credit score.

Apply for a Discover Cashback Checking account today

Forgetting to set up direct deposit

New Africa/Adobe couple standing in bank depositing money

Whether you receive a paycheck, pension, or Social Security, you can get your monthly income deposited straight into your Bank of America account.

You can even pick where you want the deposit to go, including savings, checking, or a money market account. This can make it easier to manage your money and reach your financial goals. 

BoA will notify you once the deposit hits your account, and you can withdraw it that same day.

Missing out on travel rewards

wolterke/Adobe The Bank of America facade illuminated in evening.

Bank of America offers multiple credit cards that let you earn travel rewards. You can earn even more points if you’re a BoA Preferred Rewards member.

You can earn points on all purchases and redeem them as a statement credit. The statement credit can go toward vacation expenses, such as hotels, cruises, flights, or dining.

Getting mailed paper statements

peopleimages.com/Adobe Couple is gazing at a tablet with smiles on their faces.

Instead of receiving your account statements in the mail, you can go paperless. BoA will notify you via email when your statement is ready each month.

Paperless statements make it convenient to view, download, or print them when needed. It may also be more secure than mail because there's less risk of the statement getting intercepted on its journey to you, reducing the chance of identity theft.

Paying high interest rates on credit card debt

fizkes/Adobe The lady's savings lost in a bank scam.

You may be struggling with astronomical interest rates if you have credit card debt. Luckily, you can transfer your balance to a Bank of America credit card to save money on interest.

Once you transfer your balance, you won’t have to worry about compounding interest charges for a while, which may make it easier to pay off your debt.

Not earning cash back

georgii/Adobe A young woman is tallying her salary in cash.

Bank of America also has several options for cash back credit cards. It has cards that earn points in categories like dining, gas, travel, and more! Some even come with sign-up bonuses if you spend a certain amount within a given timeframe.

If you’re considering a cash back credit card through BoA, research all the options and choose a card that lets you earn rewards on everyday purchases.

Bottom line

Roman Tiraspolsky/Adobe bank of america structure.

Banking with Bank of America offers many benefits. It’s important not to overlook the bank’s many perks, such as travel and cashback rewards, custom alerts, and direct deposit.

If you’re not already a Bank of America member, you can apply on its website to open an account.

BoA is an excellent choice if you’re looking for an effortless banking experience that offers rewards on purchases and various financial products that can help get ahead financially.

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Author Details

Carley Clark

Carley Clark is a personal finance writer from Michigan. She graduated from Spring Arbor University with a bachelor's degree in business. After graduation, she worked in finance as a revenue auditor at a casino. Carley strives to write informative content that will help readers meet their financial goals.