Payday advance programs (often referred to as “overdraft apps) are one of the hottest trending services in America. Many Americans already live from paycheck to paycheck, and COVID-19 has only made the issue even more prevalent as the government shut downs prevent many people from working.
If you use Chime’s digital banking service, then you can use their built-in paycheck advance system. However, there are a number of alternative overdraft apps that work with Chime bank as well. These include Varo, Branch, Earnin, Axos, Cushion, and others!
Today, I’m going to break down how Chime’s overdraft protection program works and also show you some of the other popular overdraft apps that can help you stay on top of your bills through these tough times.
Say goodbye to overdraft fees!
Overdraft Apps That Work With Chime
Currently, 69% of U.S. citizens live from check to check. This means that if their weekly paychecks were delayed or withheld for more than a few days, they could face serious financial trouble. It’s no wonder why the number of Americans with multiple jobs is growing every year.
If you had to spend your entire paycheck on bills and an emergency came up (or you just needed groceries), then you would have to borrow money from a friend or use an expensive payday advance lender. The only problem is that traditional payday advance lenders often charge exorbitant interest rates that can put you in a really tough situation.
For these reasons, overdraft apps have been a huge hit in the past couple of years. These apps essentially allow you to “borrow” or overdraft your account up to a certain amount without any fees. While your traditional brick-and-mortar bank may charge up to $35 every time you overdraft your account, these services often allow you to overdraft your account up to $100 or more without any fees!
Of course, they’ll still take the money back as soon as your next paycheck gets deposited into your account, but these apps are great if you just need enough gas, food, or other essentials to get through the rest of your week.
You should know overdraft can affect your overall credit score, even when you’re using the Chime Credit Builder, but the effect on your score varies depending on how often you use the overdraft facility.
Next, I’m going to show you some of my favorite overdraft apps, starting with Chime.
Chime has gained massive popularity over the past three years due to its 100% digital banking model. Unlike your typical bank that has to maintain physical locations and ATMs, Chime operates on the cloud and uses private-label banks to handle accounts.
Sure, they still have a corporate office where their servers are stored, but you won’t find a bank that you can walk into. Each user gets a unique account number and a routing number that corresponds to one of Chime’s partner banks.
If you already have a Chime bank account, then the good news is that you’re already protected! Chime has a built-in overdraft protection feature, so you don’t need to use any other services. As long as you can verify that you have a regular paycheck that you receive, they can enable this feature for your Chime account.
Once Chime can verify that you’re receiving at least $500 a month in direct deposits, they’ll start by allowing you to overdraft up to $20 at a time with no fee. The more money that’s deposited into your account every month, the more money you’ll be able to overdraft. The most amount that Chime will let you overdraft at a time is $100.
In addition to letting customers overdraft their accounts by $100, Chime also allows you to get your paycheck 2 days early! Most employers handle their direct deposits on Friday, which means that Chime would be able to get you your paycheck on Wednesday or Thursday. As you can imagine, this really helps when it comes to paying bills on time.
If you don’t have Chime, though, there are several other overdraft apps that you can use. Here are some of the most popular.
Like Chime, Varo is a “neobank” that uses white-label banking and gives users a digital bank account that they can access with an easy-to-use app and a debit card. They allow verified account holders to overdraft their accounts by up to $100, and they can also get you your direct deposit paycheck two days in advance.
Earnin is a free app that helps its users manage their finances and prevents overdrafts. Unlike Varo (which is a banking service), Earnin’s only job is to “watch” your bank account. Once you link your Chime bank account to Earnin, the app will help prevent overdraft fees by keeping an eye on your balance and upcoming auto-withdrawals.
It doesn’t stop there, though. If Earnin senses that your Chime account is about to go into overdraft, it will automatically spot you up to $100 to prevent an overdraft. Of course, you’ll have to pay this back as soon as your next direct deposit hits, but you won’t have to pay any unwanted overdraft fees.
Cushion isn’t a traditional overdraft app that lets you overdraft or borrow money. However, it’s an incredibly useful app if you want to avoid paying unwanted bank or credit card fees. Once you download Cushion, you’ll be able to link all of your bank and credit accounts.
Cushion will scan through your transaction records and identify any fees charged by the banking institution. Then, they will contact your bank or creditor and negotiate with them. Most of the time, you’ll be able to completely remove the fee or get it partially refunded!
Branch was released shortly before Earnin and essentially does the same thing. It keeps track of your bank accounts and ensures that your account never gets overdrafted. Its algorithm tracks your weekly and monthly scheduled debits and ensures that there’s always enough money in your account to cover any withdrawals. Branch also lets you get your paycheck 2 days early.
Be On The Lookout For Cash App
Although it hasn’t been officially released yet, Cash App is currently testing a service that would allow certain users to overdraft up to $200 at a time. It’s called Cash App Borrowing, and hopefully, it will be widely available by late-2021.
Since Chime already works well with Cash App, this could very well be the easiest solution yet.