Adios big banks and hello to Chime

As adults, we pretty much all have a bank account somewhere unless your that 1 person who keeps his stash under the bed or in a safe. None the less, you probably bank at one of the following banks below. These are just a few major players in my area, so no matter where you live, you probably have one of these lurking in your neighborhood.

If you do, you need to keep reading this post because I am here to educate you on something amazing in the banking world. You probably bank here because either you opened an account when you were in college, or if you were lucky to have your mortgage through one of these, or just because its the bank most convenient you to you. Yes I was a victim to one of these banks. When I say victim, I mean a victim to taking my hard earned money and messing with it. Banks like these are great for some, their convenient, they can be in many places and that’s really it. People continue to feed these money makers because its what they know and let’s face it. People do not like change if they don’t need to change (cough, those who still pay for regular cable)

Ask yourself, have you ever heard of Chime, or maybe Simple Bank? Maybe you heard the name around or seen an ad for it. These are two of the most popular online only banks out there right now. When I say online, I mean completely online. There is no branch, no tellers, no physical attribute to them. They operate solely online and in the mobile world. You may ask yourself “why would I want a bank where I can’t see or go into”, but that’s not the real question. The real question should be ” why do I need to go in to a branch”. You can open an account now from these banks online without needing to drive down, you can deposit checks via their mobile apps, and you deposit cash through their atms. That’s all great, but your still missing out on the reason to switch. How much is that costing you per month. Yes you maybe on their so called “free checking” but that bank is still taking your hard earn money eventually. The main culprit are the extra fees, mainly overdraft. At one point of another, you have been victim to this.

Mind you, I am not the best when it comes to managing my money, I will be honest. I am currently getting better with the help of my spouse, but I was tired of big banks and their unruly processes. The process of which debits, credits happen on your account. Some weeks they would happen one way, others they would switch. Sometimes they would deduct from my balance right away, sometimes they would show pending without touching my balance. For example, I was tired of them posting a payment for my icloud storage for $1.00 and then charging me $37 dollars because that $1.00 put me over in the negative, yet they denied a $50 credit card payment and charged me $37 for NSF. Basically it was like if they felt like paying a ach debit or not. I wasn’t having that anymore. There had to be a bank that actually is customer oriented and not into taking my money. Here I welcomed Chime into my life.

After some research, I settled on Chime. Chime is a FDIC regulated bank, just like the big boys above. So its federally recognized and backed by the Treasury. There is no monthly minimum, no monthly fees, no deposit, no foreign transaction fees, use of 38,000 ATMs. The biggest feature, NO OVERDRAFT FEES. Yep you can kiss those ridiculous overdraft fees to the curb. Whats great for those who may go below their balance is a feature called Spot Me. This feature is great for two reasons, one you can enable it or not and two, it will only spot you up to $20 below $0. Meaning, say a transaction comes out and puts you in the negative by say $10.00. It will spot you that $10. Once you become positive again your good. Traditional banks would pay the $10, plus charge $32, $35, or even $37 dollars. That’s a whopping $47 because it went over $10. This sold me right there.

The app is very well laid out. Its pretty straightforward and clean (green and white). Support can be done in the app and are pretty responsive. Pretty much the app has every major feature the big banks have. Did I mention its all free!

Its easy to sign up, click here to enroll for free and get your card within 7 days. By using this special link, you and me will get $50 as long as you recieve a direct deposit of $200 or more within 45 days. Great right?

Some other features of chime are:

  • Crazy good security on the app. Pass-code, fingerprint or Face ID ready
  • Apple Pay enabled/Samsung/Google Pay
  • Pay anyone, even if they aren’t on Chime (like Venmo)
  • Mail a check
  • Transfer Funds
  • Get your paycheck up to 2 days early (yep you heard that right)
  • See in real time your exact debits and credits, no exactly how much you have left (no more guessing)

The only real downside to using Chime may be for those cash only customers. While you can get your paycheck deposited by your employer, mobile deposit a check, claim your pay from Venmo, Uber or any ACH enabled 3rd party. Depositing cash must be done at any Greendot locations. Meaning most CVS, Walgreens, Walmart can deposit your cash. While its free to do so on Chime, usually they charge a fee up to 4.99. For me this is fine, as I don’t normally need to deposit a lot of cash, but for those who may need to deposit cash more then once a week may need to look at others, unless your OK with paying that fee every time. Depositing cash works easy and usually shows up in your account within 15-20 mins.

I have had the bank since May and have been pretty impressed with it. I like that every time I use it whether it be in a store or one of my automatic ACH payments are made, I am notified of the transaction and my exact balance. Another feature is normally on my old account, exact descriptions weren’t listed, Chime’s descriptions are pretty spot on where the transaction occurred. I will never go back to a big bank for my banking needs outside of maybe a loan or mortgage.

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