A Bank Switch Kit is a form or set of forms that helps a customer switch their bank account from one bank to a new bank account. Generally this is focused around transferring automatic payments from the old bank to the new bank.
We have identified several types of Bank Switch Kits and we discuss each of them in this series
- Simple – contains a Notification Form to send to each company
- Organized – contains a Notification Form to send to each company and a Worksheet to help coordinate the transfers
Within the Switch Kits we have identified two types of Notification Forms
- Generic – A form created by the bank, which can be used to send to each company
- Specific – A form specific to each vendor company to assist their customer with switching banks
Organized Bank Switch Kit
Organized Bank Switch Kits have a form or a worksheet to help the bank customer keep track of transferring automatic payments for the multiple companies they use.
Identifying and Listing the Companies
The Organizer Worksheet is typically made up of a way to check a box next to a list the companies that will need to have automatic payments transferred over. They are typically made up of one or more of the following:
- Blank Lines – The customer has blank fields where they can write down each of the companies that they need to notify
- Common Company Types – Lists the common types of companies that each customer may have. (Mortgage, Power, Gas, Phone, Cable, HOA)
- Specific Company List – Smaller Community Banks have fewer utilities their customers might be working with and they might be able to list the company names for Power, Gas or other utilities.
Each of these methods prompts the customer to identify each of the companies that they have automatic payments with. These worksheets simplify a task that could seem overwhelming to identify each of the companies they work with on auto payment.
Tracking Notification of Bank Account Switch
Notifying a company that you would like them to switch automatic payments to a new bank accounts takes time. Bank Switch Kit Organizer Worksheets are designed to simply the process.
Not all worksheets are designed the same but they attempt to help collect some amount of information so that the customer has a single place they have to refer to. Then they organize the process of notifying and tracking the progress of notifying the companies.
- Collect the company names and account numbers of all accounts
- Track the notification instructions for notifying each specific company (mailing address, phone number, etc)
- Track dates and methods that notification was sent or started
- Track dates of when the switch was successful ans confirmed
This will typcially be done by listing out a number of fields next to each of the companies that were identified or listed on the Organizer Worksheet. The most common types of fields are:
- Company Name – A place to write the actual name of the company, this is the only way that a company name is listed on a Blank Lines style of worksheet, some Common Company Types worksheets do not make room for this, since the customer often already knows exactly who their power, gas and cable provider is.
- Date – A date to track the process of when transfer is started, often room for more than one date can be made so that the form can track the date the switch was confirmed.
- Notification Instructions – a place to note how the company should be notified when a bank account switch needs to occur
- Account #- a convenient place to write the number of the account the customer holds with that company
- Amount – you can write the amount of the automatic payment that is made
- Notified – a place to mark a check or a date when you sent a notice to the company requesting a switch to the new account
- Switched – a place to mark a check or a date after you have confirmed that the company has official switched over to your new bank.
When a bank includes an Organizer worksheet in their Bank Switch Kit, they give a tool for the customer to keep track of the process and know where the next step is.
Examples of Organizer Worksheets for Switch Kits
In researching the different Organizer Worksheets, we found many different styles and we have linked to several of them below
- Washington Federal [link] – Has an overview page for their switch kit which lists several steps for switching, Step 2 is to download their Switch Organizer which lists several Common Company Types. The form helps the customers collect their account numbers and mark whether the company has been ‘Notified’ and whether the automatic payment has been ‘Switched’. The form does not have any place to list the name of the company next to the company type, and it does not attempt to help collect Notifications Instructions for any of the companies. The form does provide blanks and lines for a great number of possible companies and company types that might need to be switched.
- Bremer [link] – A community bank in Ohio, has single pdf file Switch Kit which has all of the instructions for how to fill out the switch kit. On page 5 they have a list of less than 10 Common Company Types that may need to have automatic payments transferred from. The Table has a grid with columns to enter the phone number, account number, amount , payment date, and a check box for when the switch was completed. Better the Washington Federal option, the Kit has a place to list the phone number, which could be useful help coordinate the and verify that the transfer went through. Many companies require that you mail them a form though, and this form falls short of providing a place to track the address to send the form. One unique item on this table is the payment date. While this is often a bit more complex, sometimes the date that transfers have to be made, must be carefully timed with the date the date that automatic payments will be withdrawn to make sure funds are available and not split between two banks.
Examples of Switch Kits which fall short of Organizer Worksheets
- Central Bank [link] – Has an overview page similar to Washington Federal, where they describe the process of switching accounts starts with opening an account and then “Gather your account information and enter it on the Easy Switch Kit Account Information Worksheet-Form A (below) designed specifically for this purpose.” Later on the page they provide the link to the PDF Switch Kit Organizer Worksheet file named ‘SwitchKit_formA-LexWin.pdf‘. Oddly, when opening this file, it has a title that shows ‘Microsoft Word – Switch Kit Acct_Form-A.doc’. If you look at the document, there is very little information that you would actually need as part of a switch kit. Typcially you simply need the NEW routing number and account number that you need to send to each company to let them know where they need to go. In this form, they prompt you to enter a plethora of information about the account owner, joint account owner and the new account information. In most cases you already have this information in your other documentation on the bank, which seems to make this form unnecessary. It does not help the customer switch their automatic payments and direct deposits over to the new bank, it actually just helps the new account owner collect information about them selves which will help them to open their account more quickly, saving the New Accounts banker time. We actually call this type of Kit a New Account Information Organization Kit as it helps a customer setup a new account, without any assistance related to moving money, automatic payments or direct deposits from a previous bank.
Matraex studies and produces articles related to Bank Switch kits as part of our research to release upgraded features in our Auto Switch Kit product.