Saturday, 13 December 2008

The Woolwich and Barclays - Keeping Customers' Cash

Gordon Brown has instructed the banks to pass on the interest rate cuts to their struggling customers - but now the banks are coming up with other sneaky ways of keeping customers' cash.

Just spent 37 minutes on hold to The Woolwich - owned by Barclays Bank - to find out why the recent interest cuts don't appear to have been applied to a Lifetime Tracker mortgage.

Apparently Woolwich do pass on the interest rate cut - but they leave your monthly payments the same - so customers start overpaying the loan.

However for those struggling to meet monthly payments the spare cash is completely lost to them now when they need it most.

Secondly the interest savings don't go back into the economy - as the Government hoped when it pumped in billions of pounds of taxpayers money to save the banks.

Gordon Brown has told the banks to pass on the Bank of England interest cuts - I don't think what he had in mind was 'but feel free to hang onto the spare cash' do you?

If you're a Woolwich customer with a base rate tracker mortgage you'll have to telephone them if you want to have your monthly payments reduced to reflect the new interest rate.

Don't phone them now. At 12.22 p.m today there are 90 calls queuing and a waiting time on hold of over 30 minutes.

Customers are only just waking up to the realisation that their monthly payments haven't dropped and are phoning to find out why.

Has Woolwich drafted in extra staff or written to customers to explain the options? What do you think...In fact they close at 2pm on Saturdays.

At least it's free to call them on 0800 316 5500.

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