New customers of Flagstar Bank were met with a host of issues Monday morning as the transition from Wells Fargo began.
Michigan-based Flagstar Bank acquired the area’s Wells Fargo branches and opened them as Flagstar on Monday. With thousands of new customers, Flagstar prepared over the weekend for the switchover, and said they hoped to make the transition easy.
Customers reported to WANE 15 issues creating new accounts on the Flagstar website: an error message read “Service Temporarily Unavailable: The server is temporarily unable to service your request due to maintenance downtime or capacity problems. Please try again later.”
Some customers said when they called local branches, no one picked up. WANE 15 went to several branches and found long lines of customers.
A customer, Alex Creekmer, said, “you had to know it was going to be bad because it’s like the day after they opened or changed to Flagstar so like I went in to get a new debit card because I didn’t get my debit card in the mail like everyone else, so I waited in line and they said if you need money you’re waiting in this line, if you need a debit card you’re going to be over here.”
Old National Bank is offering a $200 cash bonus at Fort Wayne and Michiana branches to anyone who starts a checking account with them.
3Rivers Federal Credit Union is offering a $300 cash bonus to any Wells Fargo customer that wants to switch to them. Marketing Director Melissa Shaw said they’ve already received hundreds of transfers to their bank since the Flagstar acquisition was announced in the summer.
“Changing financial institutions is a big deal whether it’s your choice or whether it’s not,” she said. “There are going to be things that you didn’t think of and there is effort involved. If you want to change, now is the time to do it while it’s already being done for you.”
On Twitter, Flagstar was responding to customers with the explanation: “We are experiencing some technical issues with flagstar.com. We are working to resolve the problem as quickly as possible and apologize for any inconvenience.”
Flagstar issued the following statement to WANE 15:
Over the weekend, Flagstar Bank transferred nearly 200,000 customers from Wells Fargo as part of the purchase of 52 branches. We are aware of some first day complications with customers being able to access their online accounts, as well as long wait times on the phone with customer service.
As of 5:30 P.M. on Monday, December 3, we are continuing to work to resolve issues some customers are experiencing with Flagstar’s electronic channels, such as ATMs and online banking access.
We acknowledge the frustration and inconvenience this has caused to some of our customers and take our responsibility to our customers very seriously. We sincerely apologize to our customers for the disruption to their banking services. We have dedicated additional resources to find a solution to these problems as quickly as possible and will update customers through our website, branches, and call center as resolutions become available.
Customers that have been transferred to Flagstar Bank and need access to cash can withdraw money at their local branch. Again, we apologize for this temporary disruption to your banking service and thank you for your patience.