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Chime vs Traditional Banks: is Chime a Traditional Bank Account?

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Open Banking Technology: Advantages and Risks

First, let’s clarify that Chime isn’t a bank!

Although the fintech provider is often referred to as Chime bank, it’s actually a financial services company working in partnership with Bancorp and Stride Banks to offer consumer FDIC protection. Today, we’ll discuss Chime vs. a traditional bank account. We’ll run through the Chime fee structures, accounts, spending and fees, and products to determine whether Chime is a good option for your banking needs.

Chime Banking Fees

One of the great selling points for Chime is that there are few fees, and those fees tend to be at very low rates. For example, you don’t pay anything to open a credit, savings, or deposit account, don’t pay monthly fees, and can withdraw your money free of charge from thousands of ATMs within the Chime network. Chime has no monthly maintenance fees and low foreign transaction fees. You can also get Chime credit cards, debit cards, and other financial help. 

Chime Savings Account

Chime savings account interest rates are favorable, with an annual yield of 0.5% without any threshold deposit value. You can start saving even with a small amount of money available in your checking account. Your savings account offers a secure place to save your money and offers similar benefits to a traditional bank savings account. The savings account is similar to traditional money market accounts.

Chime Checking Account

The Chime checking account is far better for customers looking to avoid monthly fees–there is no minimum balance, and you can access your paycheck two days early with a direct deposit. The Chime spending account is simple to use, and when you compare the account to a traditional bank, it has better benefits and lower fees.

Chime Credit Builder

Chime’s credit builder is a hybrid between a regular bank account and a credit card. You finance your Chime credit builder through your savings or deposit account, don’t pay interest or annual charges, and can open new accounts without any credit checks. The benefit here is that you build positive credit with a use-anywhere Visa debit card.

Chime Cash Withdrawal Fees

There are over 60,000 ATMs in the Chime network, which are all free for Chime app customers. If you need to use another ATM, you’ll pay a $2.50 fee (the US average rates are $1.50 to $3.50).

How Does a Chime Spending Account Work?

The Chime checking service operates like any other bank account, but with a few account bonuses!

Chime Cash Deposits

You’ll need to visit a partner location if you want to make a cash deposit into your online Chime spending account; these partner locations are all verified stores such as Walmart and 7-Eleven. Cash deposits at Walmart don’t come with any fees, but some smaller retail partners can charge rates up to $4.95.

The Chime Debit Card

Our favorite perk with the Chime secured credit card is that you won’t be charged any extra amount to use your card abroad–that’s a great competitive advantage given that the norm is to pay 1% to 3% on top of your purchase. Your Chime debit card is issued by Visa, so it’s just as usable as any other bank card.

Chime Overdraft Fees

There are zero Chime overdraft fees! Chime accounts come with few fees, which gives you more money to invest in your Chime savings account.

The Chime SpotMe Service

SpotMe is an exclusive Chime service with which you can have up to $20 overdrawn without paying a cent–you can also build up an account history to access a larger $200 fee-free overdraft.

Conclusion

Chime may not be a traditional bank, but it has a range of great accounts and services that reduce your banking charges, improve your credit rating, and allow you to manage your money through a convenient app. With this additional information and Chime review in mind, you can determine if you should switch from your current bank to managing your money with Chime.

When it comes to Chime versus traditional banks, there are several ways that Chime is better than a typical bank. But it’s important to understand the pros and cons of each financial institution and to find the best fit for your banking needs.

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