Balance transfer mix-up meant my £3,500 credit card bill was ‘rejected’ but ended up on both cards… and left me charged interest I’d tried to avoid
- Neil Seagrave, 35, applied to make a balance transfer at the start of March
- He thought the money had been sent from Sainsbury’s to HSBC but it wasn’t
- The transfer was rejected and then sent back, but showed on both cards
- He was unable to get to the bottom of the problem for an entire month
- After This is Money stepped in he was refunded the fee, interest and given £50
A man looking to switch his credit card balance over to a zero-interest deal was left seeing double after a mix-up between two banks saw £3,500 debt on both accounts for more a month.
He was also charged interest he had tried to avoid to add further insult to injury.
Neil Seagrave, 35, from Dorset, tried to transfer his credit card balance to HSBC at the start of March before his zero-interest term with Sainsbury’s Bank expired, having been accepted a few days earlier.
However, after a mix-up between the two banks the 2 March transfer was initially rejected but still showed up on both accounts, which he said left him with ‘effectively two credit cards both soon requiring a minimum payment.’
A man looking to switch their credit card balance from Sainsbury’s Bank to HSBC was left with the nearly £3,500 bill sitting on both cards after a mix-up
When he wrote to This is Money at the end of March after getting nowhere with the banks, he said: ‘I’m also now paying interest on the Sainsbury’s credit card which is the whole reason why I set up the transfer.’
He was also charged a £51.97 balance transfer fee.
Mr Seagrave, whose wife is on maternity leave meaning money is tight, said: ‘We’re 29 days down the line and the funds are now on both my HSBC and Sainsbury’s credit cards.
‘When I call Sainsbury’s, they say call HSBC, and when I call HSBC, they say call Sainsbury’s.’
He began calling both banks after he saw the £3,464.95 was still on his old Sainsbury’s credit card on 10 March but said no one took responsibility or was able to help sort out his case.
He tried multiple times throughout March, with increasing waiting times thanks to coronavirus pressure, but was unable to get to the bottom of what had happened.
When This is Money contacted both HSBC and Sainsbury’s Bank, we were told the balance transfer had initially been rejected by Sainsbury’s Bank which meant it was delayed.
Mr Seagrave told us that ‘HSBC sent the funds back to Sainsbury’s Bank and it was bounced back within two days, but with no understanding as to why.
‘I guess the frustration here was that when I raised the initial query back in early March HSBC already had the money back.’
After This is Money’s involvement, Sainsbury’s Bank refunded the interest he was charged on the balance he had sought to transfer before he incurred any, while HSBC refunded him his balance transfer fee of £51.97 and handed him another £50 as a gesture of goodwill.
Sainsbury’s Bank said in a statement: ‘HSBC have now confirmed Mr Seagrave’s successful balance transfer and we will refund any interest charged so that he’s not out of pocket.’
HSBC said in a statement: ‘We have contacted the customer to apologise that the service experienced did not meet the high standards we strive for.
‘The matter has now been resolved and we have provided Mr Seagrave with a gesture of goodwill for the delay and any inconvenience this may have caused.’
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