Of late, a report was released which stated that 24 banks across the public and private space has collected a total of Rs. 11,500 crore as penalty charges from customers for not complying with the minimum average month balance (AMB) requirement in the last four years. SBI alone has recovered a sum of Rs. 2400 crore in the last fiscal year i.e. 2017-18 as penalty charges from SBI savings account customers for not maintaining average monthly balance stipulated for it.
On the report, the leading state-run lender has put forth a clarification stating that SBI savings bank account customers can convert their account to Basic Savings Bank Deposit (BSBD) account for avoiding penalty for not maintaining average monthly balance (AMB). The service is available free of cost.
SBI Average monthly balance requirement and penalty charges in case of SBI S/B account
With effect from April this year, SBI as per feedback from different stakeholders has reduced AMB requirement by up to 40%. SBI saving account customers are required to maintain an average monthly balance of Rs. 3,000 in metros and urban areas, Rs. 2,000 in semi-urban and Rs. 1,000 in rural areas.
For various level of shortfalls or non-maintenance of stipulated monthly average balance, the bank charges between Rs. 5- Rs. 15 plus GST charges.
Accounts on which MAB requirement does not apply
Also, it clarified, that the minimum average monthly balance requirement does not holds true for a section of customers such as pensioners/ minors/ social security benefit holders or savings account holders who had opened their account under Prime Minister Jan Dhan Yojana scheme.
Process to get SBI S/B account converted to SBI BSBD or zero-balance account
If you want to do away with the requirement of maintaining the stipulated average monthly balance in your savings bank account, you have the option to get the account converted to BSBD A/c.
1. A simple one-page application form has to be filled in by the SBI savings account customer to get the account converted to BSBD account and submitted to the home branch where he or she is maintaining the account.
2. Bank after due verification will then convert the regular account to a BSBD account with no penalty implications in case of non-maintenance of stipulated monthly balance.
Important terms and conditions
A customer maintaining a basic savings bank deposit account cannot have any other savings bank account with SBI. Also, in case a new SBI BSBD account is opened and the customer also maintains a savings bank account, the same needs to be closed within a month of opening the BSBD account.