This Chime review will make you appreciate the bank’s efforts in ensuring you do not have to worry about monthly banking charges that keep growing month after month. Chime Bank understands the plight of bank clients, thus, they are trying to address it the way they know-how.
Do you have a savings or a spending account or you have both? How do you feel about it? Do you find the charges overwhelming or you’re okay with it? Well, while some may be fine with bank charges, a lot of us would rather now have such fees. After all, it’s like forfeiting the very reason why we are trying to save money or manage our money by putting it in the bank, right?
In an article published by Forbes, it mentioned about a 2018 study conducted by Deposit Accounts wherein it says that “the average bank or credit union customer pays nearly $34 for an overdraft, $2.28 for an ATM Fee, and $4.58 in monthly fees”. For an ordinary citizen or individual, that is so much money spent paying charges and fees when they could have just saved them, right?
To be honest, bank charges and fees are quite frustrating. Good thing, there’s Chime Bank. A mobile banking app that offers both spending and savings accounts. Chime is said to be one nuisance bank that hopes to solve bank charges and fees dilemma among clients/customers.
Sounds very promising, right? That is exactly why we are going to do this Chime review — to help you understand better what Chime is all about, how it functions, and more.
To be specific, we are going to tackle the following:
- What is Chime?
- How does Chime work?
- What are Chime Bank’s key features?
- How is Chime Bank’s pricing? What about fees?
In addition, we are also going to look into the following:
- Signing Up with Chime Bank
- Chime Bank Security Feature
- Chime Bank Mobile Support & Accessibility
- Customers Service Service
- … and lastly, the Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Chime Bank
WHAT IS CHIME BANK?
Chime Bank is an American technology company that provides financial services through a mobile app. Chime Bank has earned its popularity as it does not charge overdraft or maintenance bank fees — unlike most of its competitors.
Chime Bank was founded in 2013 by two brilliant men, namely Ryan King and Chris Britt. Chime Bank aims to be an alternative to traditional banks. Since its inception, Chime has been considered the leader in the US challenger bank space.
As mentioned earlier, Chime Bank offers both spending and savings accounts. When you open an account with them, you get to have a Spending Account, a Visa Debit Card and an optional Savings Account, which we find pretty impressive.
Chime was designed for banking using your smartphone instead of the usual brick-and-mortar bank.
To put it simply, Chime Bank is an online or “mobile-only” kind of bank that offers you an alternative to traditional banking. While it is tagged as a bank for millennials, it’s definitely open for anyone — especially those who are tired of paying high bank charges, as well as those who are sick of dealing with overdrafts.
Before we move on to our Chime review, here’s a very insightful one from Shay Budgets that you may want to check out. Click the play button to watch the whole thing.
HOW DOES CHIME WORK?
How Chime works is pretty simple. All you have to do is sign up, and then automatically, you will have access to a checking account, which is called “Spending Account” by Chime, a savings account, as well as a debit card.
All the money that you put into your Chime account will primarily be placed in your checking account. You can use the money to make everyday purchases using your debit card. You can also use it online like the usual checking account that allows you to send money to someone else. In addition, you can also write paper checks using Chime Checkbook app.
The money in your checking account is transferrable to your savings account. You have the option to either let it sit there or you can set up external transfer accounts. Don’t worry about charges because transferring cash through Chime does not have any fee.
WHAT ARE CHIME BANK’S KEY FEATURES?
As part of our Chime review, we are also going to look into Chime Bank’s key features. We are particularly checking some features that make Chime Bank set apart from other online banks and even traditional banks.
– Automatic Savings Feature + Checkbook
This feature lets all its members/users enjoy direct deposits placed into their checking accounts. From there, users have the freedom to set up an automatic savings feature. This allows 10% of your direct deposit to automatically be placed in your savings account. This is applicable for direct deposits over $500.
Furthermore, Chime Checkbook lets you send a paper check to anyone for free. All you have to do is download the app, or you may also find it in your Chime online account. If you are worried about limitations, set that aside as there are no limits to how many checks you can send every month. However, you can only send up to $5,000 per check, and $10,000 per month.
– Automatic Deposits and No Foreign Transaction Fees
Unlike other online and traditional banks, Chime lets you do an automatic deposit for your paycheck. This makes it convenient for Chime users.
Also, as stated, you do not have to deal with foreign transaction fees because there is no such thing at Chime.
– High Yield Interest Rate of 0.01%
Unlike other banks, particularly the traditional ones, Chime only pays 0.01% APY. This means that savings account will not earn an annual interest rate. But as compared to other online banks, it still is better than the others.
Having said that, if you are someone who’s after your money’s earning while in the bank, then perhaps Chime is not for you. The good thing is, Chime lets you transfer your savings account to an external account anytime you want to.
– Chime Savings Round-Ups
Each time you use your Chime debit card in making a purchase, the bank will automatically round the changeup (to the nearest $1) and deposit the change to your savings account.
With Chime, Savings round-up bonuses are deposited every Friday. The maximum amount of bonus money that you can earn is up to $500 annually. That is not bad at all, right? At the end of the day, no amount of money is small enough.
SpotMe is a unique feature of Chime Bank. It basically allows you to make debit card purchases that may overdraw your account free of any overdraft fees.
Although SpotMe is free, it gives you the ability to leave Chime an optional tip once you are able to repay your negative balance. Tipping, according to Chime, helps them continue to offer such service to its members/clients for free.
To be able to take advantage of SpotMe, you have to have at least $500 or more in direct deposits within the past 31 days. Your SpotMe limit is from $20 and can go as high as $100 or more. This will be based on your individual account history and usage.
If you want to know more about SpotMe, you got to check Chime’s website.
Meanwhile, here’s how you get to enjoy the privileges SpotMe gives (according to Chime):
- Open the Settings tab in your Chime app to find out if you’re eligible for the SpotMe feature (make sure you have the latest version of the app).
- Once you agree to the SpotMe Terms and Conditions, you are officially enrolled in SpotMe!
- When you’re enrolled in SpotMe, you will be able to make debit card purchases that overdraft your account up to $100*.
- When we receive your next deposit, we will automatically apply it to your negative balance. No overdraft fees are applied. Ever.
HOW IS CHIME BANK’S PRICING? WHAT ABOUT FEES?
Of course, our Chime review will not be complete without looking into the costing. Before you even think about contradicting information – because we earlier said that it’s free and all – you better check this out first.
First and foremost, allow us to share with you the reasons why in general, you incur a fee on your checking account. Here are they:
- Your average daily balance plunged below the required amount to keep your account free from fees.
- You did not make adequate withdrawals from your account in a period of one month.
- The account you had signed up for was withdrawn, and you were automatically enrolled in a different program, which now incurs fees.
The thing about Chime is, it does not charge you for any of the above-mentioned scenarios.
True to what we have already mentioned, Chime is fee-free. Perhaps, the only fee you will encounter when using your Chime savings, checking, or debit card account is when you wake a withdrawal using an ATM that is not part of their network.
Furthermore, Chime does not also charge you for foreign transactions, which means if you travel regularly in different parts of the world, you can use your Chime account without having to worry about transaction fees.
HOW TO SIGN UP WITH CHIME BANK?
This time around, we are going to talk about signing up with Chime Bank.
Just like any other online banks, Chime is not perfect. Unfortunately, one of its imperfections has something to do with signing up.
Generally, signing up should not be complicated, however, it is not always instantaneous. We’ve seen reports from Chime members/clients who claim that they have not received their bank account card up to two weeks after they have signed up.
For some people, this can be quite inconvenient. But if you come to think about it, Chime is still a pretty good option.
The actual application process is not as complicated as you think. However, you may wind up waiting longer to take advantage of the account than you would like.
When signing up, you will have to prepare standard forms of identification. Again, generally, signing up is easy, as well as managing your Chime account. Everything is done through your smartphone only.
HOW SECURED IS CHIME?
Our Chime review is not complete if we do not get into this — security features!
We are not just talking about a simple account online. We are talking about money, which is very essential. Thus, it is likely that as a user or member, you would want to ensure that you can fully trust the bank you are dealing with.
Good thing is, Chime Bank has the fundamental security credentials you would expect from a bank when it comes to security.
Chime is insured under FDIC, which should make you feel confident knowing that your hard-earned money is in good hands. Needless to say, you can set up either a checking or a savings account or both without anything to worry about.
Chime is a “mobile-only” bank, except that it does not function like a typical bank. Meaning, unlike traditional banks, if you encounter security problems, it is will most likely become difficult to resolve certain issues. Unfortunately, being an online bank, it does not have the same robust support structure that most traditional banks do.
So, if you are a security freak, make sure to take this into consideration before signing up or opening up an account with Chime or even with other online banks.
HOW IS CHIME’S MOBILE SUPPORT AND ACCESSIBILITY?
Apart from the fact that Chime does not charge fees, its mobile support and accessibility are also one of Chime Bank’s amazing features.
Since Chime is a mobile-only bank, it was structured around mobile support and accessibility. This allows you to access your account conveniently anytime, anywhere.
With Chime, keeping track of your money is effortless. Chime offers a straightforward experience that lets you do what you need to do without any hassle.
HOW IS CHIME’S CUSTOMER SERVICE AND SUPPORT?
As a client or as a member, especially when we deal with anything mobile, it is important that we look into customer service and support. We believe that for a mobile bank to succeed, it has to have good customer service and support. After all, unlike traditional banks, we cannot go elsewhere to have our problems settled, right?
Unfortunately, we found a lot of Chime reviews from its users/members stating that the bank’s customer service and support staff might be lacking.
One example is when you encounter problems with your account, you do not have an option to talk to someone face-to-face. Everything is solved through phone conversations only.
Unlike other online banks, Chime Bank is not a large bank, which means, it does not have essential partnerships and is a credible operation.
But whether they are a big company or not, still, the level of their customer support staff is not up to the same standard as many traditional banking options have. To be honest, this is quite harming a user’s overall experience. Needless to say, this may make more people shy away from signing up.
Having said that, if you are the type who’s worried about encountering problems with your account, you may want to consider this before signing up.
WHAT ARE CHIME BANK’S ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES?
Our Chime Bank review will not be complete without sharing with you some of the highlights and downsides of signing up with Chime Bank.
For your reference, here are some of the advantages and disadvantages that we found:
– It’s free! – As we’ve said, the key feature of Chime is the fact that it is free of charges and fees. You do not have to worry about monthly fees.
– It’s FDIC-insured. – Since Chime is insured by the FDIC, you are assured that your money is safe with them.
– It does not have foreign transaction fees. – Chime does not also charge foreign transaction fees, which makes it ideal especially for people who travel to different countries on a regular basis.
– It offers a simple direct deposit. – The bank makes it easier to get a direct deposit of your paycheck to your Chime account.
– It has lots of ATMs. – Apart from the $2.50 out of network ATM charge, Chime does not charge you for anything else. However, given the fact that they do have lots of ATMs around, you will not have to deal with such a non-Chime ATM charge.
– The interest rate is not ideal for savings. – Chime Bank offers a very low-interest rate on a savings account, which makes it challenging to use if you aim to increase your money.
– Depositing cash is a challenge. – Another big disadvantage of Chime is that it will be hard for you to deposit cash. It lacks a physical banking location, thus, making it really challenging.
– It does not have physical branches. – In relation to the aforementioned, Chime does not have physical branches. Everything is mobile/online, which makes it hard for you especially if you have concerns regarding your account.
– Customer service is not impressive. – Another disadvantage, as we mentioned earlier, is Chime’s customer service support. Unfortunately, it’s not as good as you hoped it would be.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON CHIME REVIEW
Chime is very promising, would you agree? Well, who doesn’t want free services, right? It’s nice knowing that they thought about the usual concerns of bank users/members. While it has its pros and cons, we have to say that their pros still overpower the cons.
What do you think?