SoFi Vs Chime 2022: Which Money App Should You Pick?

saltmoney author
By: Michael Restiano
Updated On: May 10, 2022
Saltmoney.org is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

As you know, there are many money apps available on the market. SoFi and Chime (formerly Acorn) are two such apps that provide a lot of similarities but also crucial differences to consider.

In this article, we will list out some of the differences between these two apps and how you can choose which one is best for you.

SoFi is a money platform that re-invests members' spare change into their loan to help them pay it back quickly and save on interest. Members can also earn higher returns by investing in a diversified portfolio of stocks and bonds through SoFi's trading platform, which is powered by SoFi's in-house team of experts.

Chime is a free mobile banking app that helps people spend smarter and save more! Members earn up to an extra 3% cashback on purchases they make throughout the month, plus Chime will round up every purchase made with their debit card to the nearest dollar and deposit the change in their Chime Account.

If you're looking for a comprehensive list of differences between SoFi and Chime, then go here. If you're new to either one of these apps and want to find which one is right for you, keep on reading below.

Comprehensive List Of Differences Between SoFi And Chime

Requirements:

The great thing about both of these apps is that they are both free to download and use! However, there are a couple of minor requirements for each one.

SoFi: SoFi app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store and requires iOS version 9 and up and Android OS 4.1 and up to run. You must be at least 18 and legally reside in the United States to use SoFi.

Chime: The chime app works best when you have a smartphone with an operating system of Android 5.0 Lollipop or higher, iOS 9.0 or newer, or Windows Phone 8.1 and higher (but it may work on older systems too). You must be at least 18 and legally reside in the United States to use Chime.

Interest Rates:

SoFi's interest rate is variable, which means it can change depending on current market conditions. SoFi has a preferential interest rate when you sign up for automatic loan payments from your checking account or savings account with them.

SoFi: Interest rates range from 2.57% APR to 13.02% APR for loans with terms up to 3 years and 4.41% to 18.53% for loans with terms of 5 years or more.

Chime: The interest rate is variable, just like SoFi's rate is. Chime's interest rate varies based on the Prime Rate (which is used for all of Chime's loans) and ranges from 9.90% to 29.90%.

sofi vs chime

Credit Score Tracking:

SoFi: This does not have a credit score tracking feature, so you will have to go to an outside source in order to get your credit score. SoFi does not have access to your FICO credit score, so you must obtain it from another site.

Chime: This has a feature where you can check your VantageScore 3.0 credit score, which uses information in your Experian credit report, so they know what to base your score on. You do have to register with an email or phone number in order to access your credit score.

The good thing about Chime is that it gives its members a free quarterly update for their VantageScore 3.0 credit score, which tracks how you are improving your financial habits and taking on less risk.

Payment Tracking:

SoFi Has an automatic payment deduction feature through your checking account, savings account, or credit card. Once you have set up automatic deductions, you can set your SoFi payments to be taken out either daily or monthly.

Chime: Does not have an automatic payment option, but they do recommend the best way to make repayment is by setting up scheduled, recurring transfers from your checking account.

Direct Deposit:

SoFi does not have an automatic direct deposit option, but they do offer a "Courtesy Pay" feature that will enable them to take money out of your bank account if you are unable to repay the loan ahead of schedule. It is up to SoFi as to how much they will deduct when the Courtesy Pay option is used.

Chime does not have an automatic direct deposit feature or one similar to SoFi's Courtesy Pay, but it does offer an "Automatic Repay" feature where you give them permission to withdraw money from your checking account when you are unable to repay before the due date. A chime will only take the minimum amount of money needed to repay your loan.

Loan Repayment:

SoFi cannot guarantee your loan terms, but they can guarantee job stability. SoFi's loans are available for both personal and professional use (including starting a business), so you can take out a loan for whatever you wish! Read more about SoFi's loan repayment offerings here.

Chime cannot guarantee your loan terms, but they do give you a maximum APR for each client that gives you an idea of how high your interest rate can go depending on the market.

Chime does offer loans for both personal and professional use (including starting a business), so you can take out a loan for whatever you wish!

SoFi allows you to repay your loans early with no pre-payment penalty. You can also pay off your loan balance in full at any time without incurring any additional fees or charges.

Chime does not allow for pre-payment, but it is always in your interest to repay early. Chime has a "Courtesy Pay" option that allows them to take money out of your bank account if you are unable to repay the loan ahead of schedule, but you will have to pay the Courtesy Pay fee when it is used.

Loan Eligibility Requirements:

SoFi does not have eligibility requirements when it comes to employment, but they do require you to be older than 18 years old when applying for student loans.

To apply for a Chime loan, you must earn $18k/year or more and have the ability to repay your loan within 6 months of receiving it. You must also reside in the United States.

SoFi will begin reporting your payments to credit bureaus starting 6 months after you start repayment, and it can take up to 12 months for SoFi's positive payment history to be reported. They recommend keeping the same bank account for at least 6 months so they can verify how long you have had an account open with them.

A chime will begin reporting your payments to credit bureaus after you have made three consecutive on-time monthly payments, and it can take up to 12 months for Chime's positive payment history to be reported.

They recommend keeping the same bank account for at least 6 months so they can verify how long you have had an account open with them.

Types Of Accounts:

SoFi offers personal loans, student loans, home loans, and mortgages. Chime only has one type of account for consumers where you can deposit your income and bills you've paid online with the Chime card and have your paycheck deposited automatically every week or month (depending on when you pay). All of the money you keep in your account will earn interest.

SoFi does not have a business account available where you can deposit your income, pay your bills online with the SoFi card, and have your paycheck deposited automatically every week or month (depending on when you pay). All of the money you keep in your personal account will earn interest.

What is SoFi?

SoFi is a multifaceted financial services company that offers an all-in-one platform for beginner investors. SoFi's goal is to help simplify the investment process for those who are just starting out.

SoFi offers products and services for debt consolidation, mortgages, wealth management, and more. SoFi is available to US residents only.

what is sofi

SoFi has a SoFi Wealth Management division that offers financial planning services, including retirement planning, estate planning, risk management, and more.

SoFi revamped its IRA rollover service in July 2019, and now it is available to SoFi IRA customers only (formerly SoFI direct investors). SoFi IRA customers can use their existing account to roll over assets directly from an employer plan or from another IRA provider. SoFi IRA customers may also be eligible for Sofi's new Roth conversion program.

SoFi is best for those looking to manage their entire investment portfolio in one place and those who need help planning their financial future.

Pros and Cons of SoFi

Pros:

They Provide Financial Advisors:

SoFi Wealth Management offers financial planning services, which can be helpful for those who are just starting out and don't know where to begin.

For instance, SoFi can help you plan for retirement, build an estate plan, and more. SoFi Wealth Management also offers retirement projections using Monte Carlo simulations to show how your savings may perform under different market conditions over various time horizons.

It is like having a financial planner on your team at no charge (investment advisory services are not available without SoFi Wealth Management).

It Has A Low Cost:

SoFi has minimal account fees, and there are no commissions charged on stock or ETF trades. For example, SoFi has no account minimum and no annual SoFi Wealth Management service fee for SoFi IRA customers with accounts under $100,000 in assets.

It also doesn't charge an account closing fee. SoFi has low-cost ETFs to choose from in its investment selection--some SoFi customers have even lower fees thanks to the Vanguard OneSource Select List that SoFi participates in.

They Offer Mortgages And Debt Consolidation:

SoFi offers mortgages and debt consolidation products, which can be helpful for those looking to save money on their monthly payments. SoFi also offers a SoFi Pro program, which can help you get a lower interest rate on your mortgage.

It Has Easy To Use Mobile App:

SoFi has an easy-to-navigate mobile app and website that millennials will enjoy using. SoFi's goal is to make investing easy and fun for those who are just starting out, and its mobile app reflects that goal. SoFi also offers a SoFi Money product, which is a checking and savings account with no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements.

Cons:

No Tax-Loss Harvesting:

Tax-loss harvesting is a process of selling securities that have lost value and then using the resulting capital loss to offset taxable capital gains realized in the same year. SoFi Wealth Management does not offer tax-loss harvesting.

It Has A Limited Investment Selection:

SoFi's investment selection is limited when compared to other investment platforms. SoFi offers access to ETFs and stocks, but there are no mutual funds or bonds available. SoFi also does not offer options trading.

It Is Only Available To US Residents:

SoFi is only available to US residents, so those living outside of the US are not able to use its services.

It Offers A Limited Track Record:

SoFi has only been around since 2013. SoFi's track record is relatively short, but SoFi offers 100% transparent portfolio holdings on its website so that SoFi customers can see what the company invests in.

SoFi Wealth Management also has a reputation for fighting for clients' best interests and does not own any proprietary mutual funds or ETFs. SoFi's SoFi Wealth Management unit is also recognized as an RIA, which means that SoFi must follow the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.

What is a Chime Bank?

Chime got started when Chime's CEO and Founder, Chris Britt, was unable to find a checking account that he liked, and Chime was created. Chime is different from most banks because Chime attempts to make its services more user-friendly, financial education-focused, and secure rather than just another bank account.

Chime offers a unique approach to banking by attempting to educate its users on how they can manage their money better and save more, which many believe is the biggest problem that financial service companies need to solve.

what is chime

Chime has been able to increase its user base from 100,000 in 2014 to 1 million Chime users, and Chime is adding approximately 10,000 users a month.

Chime has been able to expand into the market because Chime was designed based on customer feedback, 60% of Chime users are under 35 years old, and Chime offers low fees for its banking services.

Pros and Cons of Chime Bank

Pros

No Monthly Fees:

Chime doesn't charge a monthly fee for Chime's accounts. Chime would rather motivate Chime users to manage their money responsibly with Chime's goal of increasing Chime users' financial knowledge, and Chime does this by charging Chime users no monthly fees.

In fact, not only does Chime not charge a fee, they actually refund Chime users for any fees Chime users are charged by Chime's partnered banks.

FDIC Insured:

Chime accounts are FDIC insured, which means Chime account holders would be covered in the event of Chime Bank closing. Chime uses an FDIC pass-through insurance structure, so each depositor at Chime is insured to at least $250,000, which includes principal and any accrued interest up to that amount.

No Overdraft Fees:

Chime doesn't charge Chime users overdraft fees. Chime users can overdraft their accounts because Chime allows Chime users to link their checking accounts with a debit card. Chime's overdraft fee policy is that Chime Chime will not charge Chime user overdraft fees.

No Foreign Transaction Fees:

Chime doesn't charge any foreign transaction fees, which means every time a Chime user makes a payment in Chime or whatever currency that is not US Dollars or local to the area where the transaction was made, there are no foreign transactions fees.

Free Spam Protection:

Chime offers free spam protection for text messages, phone calls, and emails to protect its users from fraudulent activity associated with financial service providers, such as stealing money from Chime.

Cons

No Personal Touch:

The con of Chime bank is the lack of personal touch. Although Chime has a great online banking system, there is no in-person customer service available.

For example, if a Chime user wanted to discuss their account with someone at Chime, they would have to schedule a call. Chime does have a customer service phone line on the website for questions and answers, but it isn't 24/7 available.

Limited Services:

The services available with Chime are limited. There isn't an ability to schedule future payments on Chime's website either, so any scheduled payments have to be done manually.

ATM Charges:

If using an ATM, however, there will be fees if using an ATM outside of Chime or whatever currency that is not US Dollars.

Spending Limits:

Chime users are limited to the amount of money they can spend per month.

How To Create A SoFi Account Online?

  1. Sign up on SoFi's website by filling out the required information.
  2. Once an account has been created, users will receive an email with their login credentials to access their accounts online.
  3. There are some optional features that you can purchase, like tax refunds or overdraft protection, that must be attached within your first 30 days of opening an account.
  4. SoFi offers personal checking and savings accounts to save for short-term goals while paying interest on your deposits, but there is no minimum balance requirement which means users can come and go at their discretion while only being charged fees if they use a non-SoFi ATM.
  5. The best part is that there are no monthly fees with a SoFi account, and if you use another bank's ATM, you don't have to pay any fees.
  6. You can withdraw up to $500 per day from another bank without paying an ATM fee when using the SoFi Debit Card for transactions over this amount.

How To Create A Chime Account Online?

  1. Sign up on Chime's website by filling out the required information.
  2. A verification email will be sent to a new user confirming their identity and account.
  3. Chime does not charge any monthly fees but instead refunds users for all bank fees that are charged by partnering banks.
  4. Chime is able to reimburse users for these charges because it partners with over 36,000 different banks and credit unions around the country.
  5. To keep fees low, Chime has a monthly transaction limit of $1,000.
  6. If a user violates this, they will be charged an additional $3 fee per month until their transactions are under the limit.

Extra Information On SoFi Accounts:

  • SoFi is a financial services company that offers investing, banking, and personal loans to its customers.
  • A Personal Loan from SoFi also helps customers build credit history while having access to lower interest rates.
  • After 12 on-time payments, your loan will be reported to the credit bureaus.

Extra Information On Chime Accounts:

  • Chime is a new type of bank that offers checking and savings accounts while also being able to save for short-term goals while paying interest on your deposits, unlike other banks.
  • There are no monthly fees, but if you use another bank's ATM, you will be charged a fee.
  • ATMs with foreign currency will also charge an additional fee for this service.

What Are The Security Measures Of SoFi?

  1. SoFi is an FDIC-insured bank, and all deposits are backed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation for up to $250,000.
  2. All personal information and online banking information are encrypted using 128 Bit SSL (secure socket layer) for enhanced security.
  3. SoFi has partnered with Fiserv in order to manage customer service, deposits, and transfers.
  4. Customers are able to check their balance using text messages, so there is no need to go online or call in when an account has activity.
  5. A digital passcode is needed for logging into the mobile app so only the account owner can have access.
  6. SoFi does not offer paper checks for your account, but customers can receive money by having another SoFi customer or a vendor send them an electronic transfer.
  7. All accounts are linked to the user's Social Security number, so there is no need for additional information when verifying transactions.
  8. Customers also don't have any hidden fees, so there are no over the limit or overdraft fees associated with an account.

What Are The Security Measures Of Chime?

  1. Chime uses 256 Bit SSL encrypted servers for online banking sessions.
  2. All visible information is covered by HTTPS://, which means that it is secure.
  3. Chime has partnered with Trusteer to protect its customers from malware, phishing attacks, and man-in-the-middle attacks.
  4. All of this information is sent encrypted through TLS v1.2 sessions for the best protection while using the website or mobile app.
  5. There are no hidden fees associated with Chime, which means that customers will never pay fees for having an account or overdrawing on their account.

Who Should Use SoFi?

SoFi is a great option for anyone who has an income and wants to build credit or needs a personal loan. Customers will receive a 1.29% interest rate on their loan, which means that they can save money by not having to pay other high-interest fees associated with borrowing from other financial institutions.

It is also beneficial to anyone who needs a checking or savings account that doesn't have any hidden fees associated with it.

Who Should Use Chime?

Chime offers interest-bearing savings account for customers in order to save money and have access to different financial tools in just one place.

Customers can also make secure transactions through Chime's mobile app at no additional cost. The account will help customers save for short-term goals or emergencies while still earning interest on their deposits.

Another option with Chime is the debit card, which offers cash back rewards of up to 1% on purchases made using an associated checking account.

How Is The Customer Support Service Of SoFi?

SoFi offers a number of different ways in order to contact their customer support team. Customers can call SoFi at 1-855-437-9243 or can write an email. SoFi also has a live chat feature that customers can access when using the SoFi website or within the mobile app.

How Is The Customer Support Service Of SoFi

SoFi also has a feature that allows its customers to connect with other people in order to see how they manage and save money in order to offer ideas and tips for personal finance management.

How Is The Customer Support Service Of Chime?

Chime offers its customers a number of different ways to contact its customer service team. Customers can call Chime at 1-833-244-2094 or can send an email and reach them.

There is also a live chat feature that allows customers to get in touch with someone quickly and easily when checking out, looking for information, or just having a question.

How Is The Customer Support Service Of Chime

Chime also has an app where customers can take care of their finances on the go, so they are never out of touch with the money that is available in their account.

In addition, they also have a feature that allows customers to reach out to other people who are using Chime in order to find tips and advice.

Conclusion:

Both SoFi and Chime are great choices for anyone who wants to take control of their personal finances. However, if you are looking for an interest-bearing savings account with no hidden fees, then Chime is a good option.

Chime offers its customers the ability to make secure transactions, manage their money safely on mobile apps, and track their finances on the go. It also offers cashback rewards to customers who use Chime's debit card.

On the other hand, SoFi is beneficial for anyone who needs a personal loan or credit line but doesn't want to pay the high fees associated with taking out loans from other financial institutions.

SoFi has a customer support team available for customers who need help with their accounts or have questions about the process. SoFi also offers different ways to contact them, such as calling, writing an email, and live to chat.

Both companies offer great options for people looking to take control of their personal finances and save money while doing so. However, Chime offers a little more in terms of features and benefits for its customers.

cloud-uploaddatabasebooklaptop-phonehourglassdownloadcrossarrow-right