02/27/2014 09:24 EST | Updated 04/29/2014 05:59 EDT

Bank rejects cash for mortgage payment

Ken Steeves decided make his most recent mortgage payment in cash, hoping to speed up the transaction process.

But when he took the $3,200 to National Bank — the bank that holds his mortgage, but not his other accounts — the teller told him they couldn’t accept his money but could not give him a reason why.

“When I got there, the teller took the money to the back,” Steeves told CBC’s Daybreak Montreal. “They came back and they said they weren’t going to accept cash today.”

Steeves says he was told the bank had changed its policy and he would have to bring a cheque. Because he didn’t have his cheque book, he had to visit his home bank, the Bank of Montreal, and pay for a certified cheque.

“I just paid $7.50 to turn cash into a certified cheque that then the National Bank took,” said Steeves.

Steeves said he had even made a mortgage payment in cash to National Bank once before in 2013.

“They told me the policy had changed, but did they make a mistake? Was the management wrong but didn’t tell the tellers?” said Steeves.

A spokeswoman for National Bank said that, under most circumstances, cash payments should be accepted.

"We do accept cash deposits as long as we meet the regulations and best practices in that regard," said Marie-Pierre Jodoin, a senior public affairs advisor for National Bank.  

"The only thing that I can tell you on this situation is that it is the result of an administrative mistake. We would like to get a chance to speak with the client as soon as possible."

However, when a CBC researcher contacted a bank branch inquiring as a customer, he was told he could not make a mortgage payment in cash.

Steeves said he is skeptical of the bank’s response regarding cash payment. 

“The were very adamant about not taking the cash. I don’t think it was administrative,” said Steeves.

“I’d like to try again just to see what they will do.”

However, Steeves said he likely will just pay by cheque from now on to avoid the hassle.