Consumer Payment Card News

BofA HomeBanking

Yesterday, Bank of America’s ‘HomeBanking’ service dropped all access fees, reduced fees for online bill payment and added a new service enabling customers to view credit card account information. California-based checking account customers can now access ‘HomeBanking’ via the Internet, direct dial-up or via America Online without charge. Online customers can also sign up for the BofA bill payment option which has been reduced for $6.50 per month to $5.95 per month. VISA and MasterCard account information is also now available for no additional fee. BofA credit cardholders can now view up to seven months of credit card activity, download information into financial management software programs, and email messages to customer service.

In response to customer feedback and input, Bank of America today announced that it has launched new pricing and service options for its rapidly growing HomeBanking service. BofA said it is now offering free online account access to all of the bank’s HomeBanking customers. The bank also announced that it has reduced the monthly fee for its popular HomeBanking online bill payment option.

The new pricing and service choices for Bank of America HomeBanking customers are available via three different access channels — the Internet, America Online and through a direct link to the bank’s computer system using a customized version of Managing Your Money(R) software.

These new pricing and service options apply to HomeBanking customers with California-based checking accounts. BofA currently offers similar options to its HomeBanking customers with accounts based in Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, and Texas. Customers with accounts located in states outside California — who access HomeBanking using Managing Your Money(R) software — are unaffected by the changes announced today, BofA said. The company’s Seafirst subsidiary also offers an online banking product to its customers in Washington state.

“These new HomeBanking service and pricing options provide our customers with even more choices for handling their online banking needs,” said Michael A. DeVico, head of Bank of America’s Interactive Banking division.

“Customers who want online access to their BofA accounts — like the ability to view account activity or make transfers between accounts — can now have that access free of charge,” DeVico said. “Meanwhile, other HomeBanking customers who want both online account access and the convenience of online bill paying, can select our bill payment option at a reduced monthly fee, or obtain that service free with selected checking account packages.”

The free HomeBanking service allows customers to view balances and up to three months of checking account activity; see if checks or deposits have posted; transfer money between linked BofA accounts; and download statement activity into financial management software programs.

HomeBanking with the bill payment option provides customers with all of the same online account access features, along with the ability to make an unlimited number of bill payments every month to virtually any payee. Customers who use this convenient service can preschedule bill payments up to a year in advance, and they continue to have free access to BofA’s Pay by Phone service, which allows bills to be paid using a touch-tone telephone.

The cost of HomeBanking with Bill Payment has been reduced from $6.50 per month to $5.95 per month, BofA said. This monthly fee will continue to be waived for customers who have a Versatel(R) checking account with direct deposit; a Prima(R) checking account; or a Master Relationship Account(TM).

Consumers can take a test drive of Bank of America’s HomeBanking service or sign up for the service by visiting the bank’s Web site ( or its site on America Online (Keyword:BofA).

In addition to the new HomeBanking account choices, Bank of America also has introduced online access to credit card account information via the Internet. Customers with BankAmericard(R) Visa(R) or MasterCard(R) credit card accounts can view up to seven months of credit card activity online, download information into financial management software programs, and send e-mail messages to customer service. BankAmericard holders can sign up for free Internet access to their accounts by visiting the bank’s Web site at

Bank of America is recognized as a leader in providing online banking and financial services, enabling its millions of customers around the world to conduct their banking when they want, where they want and how they want. The New York Times recently reviewed the online banking services offered by six of the largest and most prominent U.S.-based banks, and the Times concluded that “Bank of America probably has the best overall Internet banking service with a nice balance of features, speed and ease of use. … Bank of America has far and away the best content, with a range of features on personal finance topics.”

In addition to providing access to its popular and convenient HomeBanking service, Bank of America’s award-winning Web site ( contains a wealth of information about the company’s wide range of other products and services for consumer and corporate customers. More than 2,500 different pages of information can be viewed by anyone visiting the Web site. Visitors can access a broad array of information and services, including online loan, credit card and checking account applications; interactive personal finance decision tools; listings of bank-owned residential and commercial properties; news releases; and economic reports. The Web site’s Build Your Own Bank feature allows visitors to select topics of interest and view a personalized page of money tips and financial information whenever they visit Bank of America’s Web site.

Bank of America is a subsidiary of San Francisco-based BankAmerica Corporation, the nation’s fourth largest bank holding company, with more than 1,900 branches and 7,500 Versateller ATMs in 11 states. With offices in 38 countries throughout the world, BankAmerica provides a wide array of retail and wholesale banking products and services to consumers and corporate clients.

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