Banking

Chime banking review: Save automatically and receive your paycheck up to 2 days early

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Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

None

  • Pros & Cons
  • Details

  • Pros
    • No minimum opening deposit
    • No monthly service fees
    • Receive your paycheck up to 2 days early
    • Rounds debit card purchases up to the nearest dollar and puts spare change in your Chime Savings Account
    • No overdraft fees for overdrafts up to $100 with SpotMe, if you qualify
    • No foreign transaction fees
    • Request checks be sent to recipients online
    Cons
    • $2.50 out-of-network ATM fee
    • No overdraft protection for overdrafts exceeding $100
    • Deposit cash at Green Dot locations, which may charge fees
    • No physical checkbook
    • Limited to $200/day or $1,000/month transfers from external bank accounts, if initiated through Chime
    • 38,000+ free ATMs nationwide through MoneyPass® and Visa® Plus Alliance
    • Rounds debit card purchases up to the nearest dollar and moves spare change into your Chime Savings Account
    • Qualify for SpotMe overdraft protection by receiving $500 in direct deposits per month
    • Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by, and debit card issued by, The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC.


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    The Chime Spending Account is a good low-fee account — there are no monthly service fees, foreign transaction fees, or overdraft fees. Chime does charge a $2.50 for using an out-of-network ATM, though.

    Chime has a free overdraft protection program called SpotMe. This program allows you to overdraw by up to $20, and your limit may go up to $100 depending on your Chime account history. SpotMe has its pros and cons. On the plus side, it’s free, and you don’t have to link to a savings account for overdraft protection like you do with many banks. But you can only qualify for SpotMe if you receive at least $500 in direct deposits per month. If you don’t enroll in SpotMe, then Chime will simply deny a purchase that would overdraw your account, which could put you in a bind if you’re trying to make a necessary payment.

    You’re limited to transferring $200 per day or $1,000 per month from an external bank into your Chime Spending Account, if you initiate a transfer through Chime. If you need to transfer more, initiate the transfer from the external bank account instead.

    You can receive your paycheck up to two days early with Chime, which allows you to a) access your money sooner, and b) transfer money into your savings account to start earning interest sooner.

    Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

    0.50% APY

  • Pros & Cons
  • Details

  • Pros
    • Competitive APY
    • No minimum opening deposit
    • No monthly service fee
    • Option to round debit card purchases to the nearest dollar and put spare change in savings account
    • Option to automatically save a percentage of your paycheck
    Cons
    • Must open Chime Spending Account before savings account
    • Deposit cash at Green Dot locations, which may charge fee
    • Round debit card purchases to the nearest dollar to put spare change into savings account
    • Set up a percentage of your paychecks to be put into savings account
    • Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by, and debit card issued by, The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC.


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    Read Our ReviewA looong arrow, pointing right

    The Chime Savings Account has two main claims to fame: It pays one of the highest APYs in the industry right now, and it makes it easy to automatically save. Chime has two automatic savings options. First, it will round any debit card purchase up to the nearest dollar and put the spare change into your savings account. Second, you can set up a percentage of your paycheck to immediately go into your savings account.

    You must have a Chime Spending Account before opening a Chime Savings Account, because the two often work in tandem.

    Chime is a banking platform, and your accounts are insured by either Stride Bank, N.A. or The Bancorp Bank for up to $250,000.

    Chime has a checking and high-yield savings account, and you must open a checking account to qualify for the savings account. The platform doesn’t offer joint bank accounts. 

    The Chime mobile app has 4.8 out of 5 stars in the Apple store and 4.5 out of 5 stars in the Google Play store. 

    You can email Chime customer support 24/7, or call Monday through Saturday, 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 pm. ET. Or call Sundays, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. ET.

    Chime has a B in trustworthiness from the Better Business Bureau. The BBB grades a company based on its honesty in its advertising, transparency about business operations, and responsiveness to customer complaints.

    Chime’s BBB rating recently dropped from an A+ to an B as the result of a settlement. Chime used the URL “Chimebank.com” as well as using the words “bank” and “banking,” even though the company is not licensed to operate as a bank in any jurisdiction. Chime also has failed to respond to one complaint made against the platform. 

    Otherwise, Chime doesn’t have any public controversies. Between its solid BBB grade and relatively clear history, you may decide you’re comfortable using this banking platform.

    Chime is an online-only banking platform with a robust checking and high-yield savings account. We’ve compared it to two banks that are very different from each other, but both share some key features with Chime.

    Chime review vs. Ally review

    Ally and Chime have a lot of similarities: They both have a checking account and a high-yield savings account, and they pay similar rates.

    But Ally has a built-in budgeting tool that gives it a leg up. With Ally, you can assign each account a nickname, like “Emergency Fund” or “Travel Account” to track your progress and stay motivated. You may decide to open a separate account for each goal, but Ally has a bucket feature that allows you save for multiple goals in one account.

    You can also open a CD with Ally, but not with Chime. Ally also has joint accounts, while Chime does not. 

    Ally doesn’t have the option to receive your paycheck two days early like Chime does. But unlike Ally, Chime charges a $2.50 fee when you use an out-of-network ATM, while Ally reimburses out-of-network ATM fees up to $10 a month. So you’ll probably like Chime if you want to get your paycheck early, but Ally if you plan to use out-of-network ATMs.

    Chime review vs. Wells Fargo review

    While Chime and Simple are similar at their core, Chime and Wells Fargo are very different. But both have good automatic savings features.

    Wells Fargo’s Way2Save Savings Account automatically moves $1 from checking into savings each time you swipe your debit card. It could be a good option if you like automatic savings but also want a more traditional banking experience, including joint accounts and physical branch locations.

    So if you want face-to-face banking, joint bank accounts, and the option to open CDs, then Wells Fargo could be a good fit.

    But if you value earning a high APY on your savings, then you’ll probably want to go with Chime or another online bank or platform. Like most brick-and-mortar banks, Wells Fargo pays low rates on savings.

    Wells Fargo doesn’t allow you to receive your paycheck early like Chime does. The company has a “direct deposit advance” feature, but this is really just a line of credit that comes with hefty fees.

    Laura Grace Tarpley is the editor of banking and mortgages at Personal Finance Insider, covering mortgages, refinancing, bank accounts, and bank reviews. She is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF). Over her four years of covering personal finance, she has written extensively about ways to save, invest, and navigate loans.

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