Bendigo Bank account holders in Tatura will be forced to commute to Shepparton to do their banking after the bank halved the commission it paid to an agent in town.
‘‘More than 300 residents will be affected by the loss of the Bendigo Bank agency in town,’’ Challenge Taxation and Accounting Services owner Aaron Manuel said.
Mr Manuel’s dedicated space for Bendigo Bank customers inside his tax and accounting business will close on Wednesday afternoon.
‘‘We were basically a miniature branch, customers could do their day-to-day banking and it worked really well,’’ Mr Manuel said.
‘‘But it is no longer financially viable for us to continue providing the service.’’
A Bendigo Bank spokesperson confirmed the change in commission payments to the Tatura agent.
‘‘For some years economic conditions have caused an imbalance in how income is shared with our partner agents, and we are now applying those changes,’’ the spokesperson said.
‘‘It is regrettable that the agent has decided to cease operating a Bendigo Bank agency, however, we are firmly committed to partnering with a new agent in Tatura.’’
Tatura resident Peter Boswell said it was sad and disappointing that Bendigo Bank had halved commission rates, because he refused to bank with the big four.
‘‘The only way to continue banking would be to commute to and from Shepparton and it’s very inconvenient,’’ Mr Boswell said.
‘‘I went to Bendigo (Bank) because they did things differently, but now they’re falling in line with the big four.’’
Tatura resident Bernie Maher had been with Bendigo Bank for more than 30 years, but said the decision forced him to move his money to the National Australia Bank.
‘‘A lot of people make the commute into Shepparton, but for those that can’t drive — what do they do?’’ Mr Maher said.
‘‘They’ll have to change banks and with less than a month’s warning, it’s extremely poor.’’
The decision leaves Tatura with just two places for the community to do face-to-face banking in the town — at National Australia Bank and Commonwealth Bank.
‘‘For those affected by the situation we’ll do whatever it takes to help them make alternative arrangements, but I have no doubt it will cause some ill will towards the bank,’’ Mr Manuel said.