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US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Old Jun 10th 2014, 8:23 pm
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Default US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Hi,

I have tried searching the forum, but can't find anything similar (apologies if i missed it).

I am moving from the UK to USA on an L1-A in August and i will need a bank.

Wondering if anyone can recommend a bank that are both, friendly to us Expats with no credit history, and also have good cutover service, decent banking e.t.c

And recommendations/suggestions/comments greatly appreciated!

Gareth
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 8:54 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Wells Fargo. The best of the "big four" banks, arguably by far, with industry leading customer services. They have many branches in LA, the length and breadth of CA, and in most major states across the country including the entire west coast, Texas, and the east coast from Florida to Connecticut. Boston and MA is the only notable gap in the Wells Fargo network.
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 9:10 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Hi Pulaski,

Thanks for the info. Do you know what they are like with Expats, are they ok to open accounts with temporary addresses e.t.c?

Thanks

Gareth
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 9:42 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Most banks are fine, you show proof of who you are, use work address, jobs done.

Won't help for credit history though...but there's a whole wiki on that subject.
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 9:55 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

I would rate Wells Fargo 'just about satisfactory'. If you open an account with them in the New Year, you get a cute stuffed Rose Parade pony

Honestly, I think they're all fairly similar.I have not heard of one which particularly helps expats.
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 10:27 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Originally Posted by gazzer82 View Post
Hi,

I have tried searching the forum, but can't find anything similar (apologies if i missed it).

I am moving from the UK to USA on an L1-A in August and i will need a bank.

Wondering if anyone can recommend a bank that are both, friendly to us Expats with no credit history, and also have good cutover service, decent banking e.t.c

And recommendations/suggestions/comments greatly appreciated!

Gareth
Never been to LA, haven't visited California since the 1970s.

But, my general advice ... Forget the big banks. Go to a Savings & Loan or a Credit Union in the town in which you are living. They have all the same services for lower (or zero) fees, as the big multinational banks.

This is what I've done in all the different places I've lived in the US. Currently, I bank with a Savings & Loan with just one branch. They've been in the same premises since 1872. They pay interest on my checking account. I personally know the CEO and the manager. There is no banking service I've required that they've been unable to provide. I've never paid them any kind of fee.
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 10:44 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Originally Posted by Sally Redux View Post
I would rate Wells Fargo 'just about satisfactory'. If you open an account with them in the New Year, you get a cute stuffed Rose Parade pony

Honestly, I think they're all fairly similar.I have not heard of one which particularly helps expats.
Yeah, ask 6 people for a bank recommendation, you're likely to get 12 different answers. I left Wachovia once Wells Fargo took over, hated them. I quite like USBank.
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Old Jun 10th 2014, 11:05 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Originally Posted by sir_eccles View Post
Yeah, ask 6 people for a bank recommendation, you're likely to get 12 different answers. I left Wachovia once Wells Fargo took over, hated them. I quite like USBank.
We've been with US Bank for about 3years. No major complaints so far.
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Old Jun 11th 2014, 12:47 am
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Originally Posted by Sally Redux View Post
I would rate Wells Fargo 'just about satisfactory'.
Well, by US banking standards, 'just about satisfactory' is as good as you can hope to get - way ahead of the average which is, typically, something like 'absolutely bloody awful' ...
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Old Jun 11th 2014, 1:05 am
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Originally Posted by md95065 View Post
Well, by US banking standards, 'just about satisfactory' is as good as you can hope to get - way ahead of the average which is, typically, something like 'absolutely bloody awful' ...
Fair enough - take it as a ringing endorsement
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Old Jun 11th 2014, 1:30 am
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

10 years ago, I walked into the nearest bank to where I lived, to ask about what I would need to open an account as a newly arrived Brit. 30 mins later I left with a checking and savings account, and I have maybe talked to a bank person twice a year since. (it happened to be Bank of America). Bottom line, everyday banking is available on every street corner. If you have special needs, shop around once you get settled.

(I am not in LA!)
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Old Jun 11th 2014, 9:15 am
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Thanks everyone, i guess i'll see who's close to me i finally find somewhere to live . . .

Cheers

Gareth
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Old Jun 13th 2014, 5:05 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

We bank at Bank of the West and Chase. One really has to watch that Chase doesn't impose fees [e.g. do NOT get overdraft protection]. They are everywhere, so one has better "free" access to the ATM's One nice thing about them is that if you should lose you ATM card you can go into ANY branch and get a new ATM card on the spot and the old one will be cancelled. [None of this waiting for it to be delivered]. Also, Chase is all over the country. I've used ATM's in New York, Chicago and Idaho with no problem. [BTW, I wonder if the replacement ATM feature will survive into the rollover to Chip & whatever technology].

I join in finding a credit union. The one we are members of does not have checking, although it does have ATM's. We just re-fi'd our house and it was easier than normal because they keep the paper in house. [If you will be affiliated in anyway with CalTech or JPL -- "CEFCU" is great.].

Last edited by S Folinsky; Jun 13th 2014 at 5:07 pm.
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Old Jun 13th 2014, 11:06 pm
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Originally Posted by gazzer82 View Post
Hi Pulaski,

Thanks for the info. Do you know what they are like with Expats, are they ok to open accounts with temporary addresses e.t.c?

Thanks

Gareth
It's a long time since I opened my a/c, and that was with Wachovia which WF bought in 2008. Despite expectations, and what SirEccles said, mostly Wachovia's reputation for good service seems to have rubbed off on the legacy WF branches which had a less admirable reputation (most WF branches in CA legacy WF branches).

You might need to jump up and down a bit, and ask to speak to a manager to get some things as your circumstances as an expat are not typical. Almost anything you want as an expat is possible with WF, unfortunately this is not always known by the first tier customer service staff..... though this is probably true of pretty much any bank!
Originally Posted by S Folinsky View Post
We bank at Bank of the West ......
I must point out that Bank of the West belongs to the French, though you might need to be English to understand why that is important.

Last edited by Pulaski; Jun 14th 2014 at 12:00 am.
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Old Jun 14th 2014, 12:32 am
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Default Re: US Bank Recommendations - LA Area

Friends rate Union Bank.....
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