BaseRates Merchant Services Review

BaseRates Overview

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Note: The BaseRates Merchant Services expired on 6/9/2020 and is listed as being in the process of renewal of deletion. Merchants with any information on the company’s current operational status are encouraged to leave feedback in the comment section of this review. All information in this review is otherwise current as of June 2020.

Wholesale Processing Rates

Founded in 2014, BaseRates Merchant Services is a merchant account provider that seeks to distinguish itself with its unique credit card processing pricing plan. Like Fattmerchant or Payment Depot, BaseRates advertises that it passes the wholesale interchange costs to its merchants with no additional per-transaction markup. In place of a per-transaction fee, BaseRates merchants only pay a flat monthly fee to process cards, which is very uncommon within the industry.

Headquartered in California

BaseRates Merchant Services is a registered ISO/MSP of Elavon and is headquartered at 3579 E. Foothill Blvd, Ste #277, Pasadena, CA.

BaseRates Review Table of Contents

  • Costs & Contract: BaseRates Merchant Services appears to offer a month-to-month contract with 3 tiers of monthly fees and no termination fees.
  • Complaints & Service: BaseRates Merchant Services has received fewer than 10 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: BaseRates Merchant Services does not have a profile with the Better Business Bureau.
  • Sales & Marketing: BaseRates Merchant Services does not appear to hire independent sales agents and not received any complaints about its sales practices.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With BaseRates Merchant Services
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Products & Services Offered

  • Sales reporting
  • EMV-compatible credit card terminals
  • Mobile payment processing
  • Virtual terminal
  • Online payment gateway

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • E-commerce
  • Mobile

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BaseRates Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate Interchange Plus $0.05
Keyed-in Rate Interchange Plus $0.05
Virtual Terminal Rate Interchange Plus $0.05
Payment Gateway Fee None
Low Volume Plan Fee $35 Per Month
Medium Volume Plan Fee $49 Per Month
High Volume Plan Fee $59 Per Month
Early Termination Fee $0
PCI Compliance Fee $0

Interchange Rates on a Month-to-Month Contract

As the company’s name would suggest, BaseRates has a unique pricing model that could be the cheapest processing option available for many merchants.  Instead of earning its revenues with a per-transaction markup under either an interchange-plus plan or a tiered pricing plan, BaseRates charges merchants a simple $0.05 fee per transaction plus a fixed monthly fee and then passes along interchange costs as they’ve been set by the card networks. In other words, a merchant’s only costs through BaseRates will be a fixed monthly fee. However, there is reason to be skeptical of the company’s pricing structure, given the basis of merchant complaints.

Merchants processing under $10,000 in sales per month are charged a monthly fee of $35. Merchants processing under $25,000 per month are charged $49. While high volume merchants whose monthly transactions exceed $25,000 are charged a fee of $59. BaseRates also advertises that it offers month-to-month contracts with no PCI compliance fee or early termination fee, and the company also appears to either sell or lease equipment.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its storefront payment processing services, BaseRates Merchant Services also mentions that its same plans and pricing structure are available to e-commerce merchants.

A Lone Contract Complaint

On the surface, everything about the pricing through BaseRates indicates that the company is a great deal for most merchants. However, merchants are cautioned to read all documentation carefully and to inquire as to whether any additional parties may impose fees. We have found only one BaseRates complaint that describes unexpectedly high rates through the company, but the merchant, in this case, seems to have received an effective rate of around 3%. That’s not a remarkably high effective rate, so it’s possible that the merchant just didn’t understand how interchange rates work. Even though the company seems to offer competitive pricing, merchants are still advised to ensure that they fully understand their agreements before signing.

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Response from BaseRates

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BaseRates Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

Total Online Complaints 10+
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint High Fees

Low Complaint Total

We have found over 10 negative reviews about BaseRates Merchant Services reviews on the usual consumer protection websites. These complaints mention higher-than-expected rates, in excess of the interchange-plus pricing the company advertises. Other complaints mention poor communication by sales agents, and poor customer support.

Each complaint about the company is sourced from a Reddit thread in a subreddit created for small business owners. The basis of the thread mentions fees in excess of the fees promised by the company’s sales agents:

Well, not only was I not getting wholesale cc processing fees (after a few months I calculated my percentage was right around 3%, which is higher than the rates of pretty much every other CC processor), but the rep I who was very attentive when signing me up just fell off the face of the earth. No reply by phone, email, or PM.

The thread is from 5 years ago and tags the company’s own Reddit user account which remained active across relevant subreddits until its last activity 5 years ago. Despite its presence on the website, the company did not address the pattern of complaints left by users in the aforementioned thread.

BaseRates Merchant Services Lawsuits

We have not found any outstanding class-action lawsuits or FTC complaints filed against BaseRates Merchant Services. Dissatisfied merchants who wish to pursue a non-litigious course of action against the company should consider reporting it to the relevant supervisory organizations.

BaseRates Merchant Services Customer Support Options

BaseRates advertises 24/7/365 phone support (which is probably serviced through Elavon), so merchants should be able to reach a live representative at any time. We have therefore assigned it an “A” in this section, but we do not consider it a top credit card processor for customer service. If you have had any experience with the company’s customer support channels, please describe your experience in the comment section below.

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Response from BaseRates

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BaseRates BBB Rating Summary

No Profile with the BBB

The Better Business Bureau does not currently maintain a profile for BaseRates Merchant Services. We will therefore not factor a BBB rating into our overall grade for the company.

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Response from BaseRates

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Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

Employs Independent Resellers No
Advertises Deceptive Rates No
Discloses All Important Terms Yes

No Widespread Sales Issues

BaseRates does not appear to employ an outside sales team or engage in telemarketing practices, meaning that it likely advertises through its website and online listings. There are no BaseRates Merchant Services complaints that describe misrepresentation or nondisclosure by the company’s sales reps, so it seems that the company generally enforces transparency throughout its sales force.

No Misleading Rate Quotes

As an additional point in its favor, the BaseRates Merchant Services website does not appear to list any deceptive rate quotes or misinformation. The company clearly lists all of its pricing information on a dedicated page of its website. If you suspect that you have had undisclosed fees added to your BaseRates Merchant Services contract, however, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit to eliminate hidden charges.

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Response from BaseRates

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BaseRates Merchant Services Logo

Our Opinion of BaseRates

A Unique Approach Appropriate For Some Merchants

BaseRates Merchant Services rates as a reliable merchant services provider according to all available information. However, the company is still relatively new and utilizes an unconventional pricing plan that may not be a perfect fit for all merchants. Some may prefer to work with a top-rated payment processor that features a more standard pricing structure. Merchants are advised to carefully read all documentation and ensure that they understand all rates and fees. As a final note, merchants should be aware that the company’s name could easily be misspelled as “Base Rates Merchant Services.”

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Thank you for reading my review. I hope that it has helped you with your research.

Why I'm Qualified to Write About Credit Card Processing and Merchant Account Services

I'm a former credit card processing sales director who left the industry because I didn't like how it takes advantage of small business owners. It feeds like a leech on businesses and thrives by imposing fees that are nearly impossible to comprehend. Seeing a need for change, I left and built this website help business owners better understand the industry, research merchant services providers, and get refunds of excessive merchant account fees. My experience of working "behind the curtain" in the industry, and using that knowledge for good, has resulted in millions of dollars returned to hard-working small business owners as well as enterprise-level companies.

From the time that I starting working in the merchant services industry to when I left to create this website, I've been on the pulse of payments for nearly 15 years. It didn't seem fair to keep this "insider" knowledge to myself. To lift the fog, I've reviewed hundreds of companies, read thousands of user reviews, and learned the pricing tricks of every provider. If you have questions about credit card processing, you can find the answers on this website.

How I Can Help You

I specialize in helping businesses get refunds of excessive fees and have recovered $1,567,184 this year alone! Submit a recent statement below to find out if you are getting overcharged. I'll take a look at it for free. If I find fees that can be refunded, hire me on contigency. I only get compensated if I put money back into your pocket.

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