The fiasco of moving large sums of money, thxs PNCBank

I’ve been wanting to write this for a little bit. If only, so I have a documented experience of how ridiculous it was to move money from PNCBank to escrow for a recent home purchase. Oh hey, Jesse and I were able to get a house! w00t! That was a 6 month protracted war, and man, we seriously got lucky. But, I’m here to entertain or sadden you about how hard it can be to get access to your money when you’re trying to move large sums of it! So we got a mutual on a house Tuesday evening 7/10 round ~10:30pm. So I now have until 5pm PT on 7/12 to get my funds into escrow for earnest money. So my woes begin.

(PNC-call-1)I call my PNCBank branch where my account originated back in Jersey. I had a feeling there was no way for me to get a cashier’s check. This wasn't wholy unexpected, as there are no PNCBank or affiliate branches in Washington state. Great, so can I do a wire? “No, you physically have to go into a bank to do a wire”. Um…. well shit. I call my closing agent, and my mortgage broker letting them know the situation. I call PNC again (PNC-call-2), same story. There is no way for me get my money. So my closing agent works out a deal. I can give most of the money in a personal check to escrow which will take a couple days to clear, and I need to give $5K in money orders. At some point I had thrown out the resolution to get on a plane that night to fly to Chicago, the closest major airport that has PNCBank branches to get a cashier’s check and immediately fly back to Seattle to deliver it on 7/12. I ran into this as the only solution, at around 4pm on 7/11 I tried to get the $5K in money orders from the post office but I ran into my pin limit and so couldn't amass the funds. Now I get a false resolution.

I can PNC again, this time corporate, (PNC-call-3). I call asking to get my pin limit increased because of my inability to get the money orders I need, while telling my whole tale of the day. Which, btw, I basically didn’t get to work on 7/11. Once the issues started I was on the phone or running around looking for a solutions at other banks for the rest of the day, and could not work. So after laying out my situation to the 3rd person I’ve talked to from PNC, they say “Oh, you absolutely can do a wire. I’m not sure why you were misinformed. The wire department is out of the office by now, but they will be back at 8am ET, just call then”. Alright, I don’t have to get on a plane, and I don’t need some janky deal. I tell my closing agent of my relief and wait till tomorrow morning.

(PNC-call-4). I call in the morning, and am put on hold, long enough that I need to start taking Lucy to the vet. I get through to the wire department at PNCBank. “You can do a wire, but your account is not setup to do wires. You need to fill out a form, we will not email or fax you this form, only by usps mail”. What the effing christ!!!! I call my agent informing I’m going to have to do the jank deal. At this point I’m a tad angry, driving, with a sick cat in the passenger seat crying. Thursday morning is not going well.

Alright I just need to get $5K in cash from my PNC account to get the money orders at the post office. (PNC-call-5). “You’re ATM withdrawal limit is 1500, and your debit pin limit is 2000.” Can I get a temporary increase? “No, these are hard corporate limits”. <- Actual quote. “Maybe you can go to a Bank and write yourself a check and they will cash it for you?” I walk into 2 banks, they both say I have to have an account with them to do this. One bank, whom I’ll not name, gave me the following suggestion. “You only need 1500, right?”. Go to QFC, and buy the visa debit gift cards with your credit card and then use those to turn them into money orders. I go to the QFC to the western union to do this… Western Union goes “You’re turning credit, into cash, that’s money laundering you can’t do that”. WTF! A BANK told me to do this!

So I’m pretty down at this point. The fuck, am I going to do? And then I remember, I can do a cash advance on my credit card. I call up discover. “You’re cash advance limit is $1600, and it’s a 5% charge”. Better than losing the house. So I go to a wells Fargo and get 1500 from my Discover card at a lovely fee of $75 for doing so. Finally to the post office, get the $5K in money orders, drive over the escrow office to deliver the personal check & the money orders. What a damn nightmare.

Don’t buy a house in a state where you don’t have a bank and your money in it!