How to Open a Chase Checking Account (4 Easy Steps)

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Checking account fees to be aware of

Most checking accounts have a monthly service fee.  There are typically ways to waive monthly service fees if you meet certain requirements.  Other fees may apply, such as out-of-network ATM fees and overdraft fees.

What to consider before opening a checking account

Before you apply for a checking account, it’s important to know the potential upsides and downsides of different types of accounts. This way, you can confidently decide which type is right for you. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Perks. Premium checking accounts offer perks you’d typically have to pay for, such as a no fee safe deposit box, checks, official checks, money orders or waived out-of-network ATM fees. Rewards checking accounts allow you to earn points or cash back through purchases with your debit card. Other types of checking accounts may offer lower mortgage interest rates or financial guidance. 
  • Service and ATM fees. Depending on the account, you may have to pay monthly service or maintenance fees. There may be options to waive the monthly service or maintenance fee if you meet certain requirements. Other fees such as out-of-network ATM fees or overdraft fees and other miscellaneous fees may apply.
  • Fund access. The benefit to checking accounts is that you can access your funds through a debit card or checks. However, because some checking accounts have minimum balance requirements to waive the monthly service fee, consider how important it is for you to have access to all your funds on demand.
  • In-person vs. online. Some checking accounts through traditional banks give you access to brick-and-mortar locations you can visit for assistance, account management and transactions. Others, like online or checkless accounts, are online only. Weigh whether it’s important to have access to a real person vs. conducting all of your needs online or over the phone.

You should also consider which checking account works best for you. Whether it be student checking, college checking, or a traditional checking account, each plays an important role when it comes to managing your finances.

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How To Waive the $12 Monthly Fee

While the minimum opening deposit balance is $0, most people want to know the minimum daily balance to waive the monthly fee. This Chase account comes with a $12 monthly service fee.

However, you can get that monthly fee waived in one of three ways:

  1. Monthly Direct Deposit: Have direct deposits totaling $500 or more in new money each monthly statement period
  2. Maintain Daily Balance: Have a daily balance of at least $1,500 at the beginning of each day
  3. Average Balance from Linked Accounts: Have an average beginning day balance of $5,000 or more in any combination of linked qualifying Chase checking, savings and other accounts

Qualifying personal balances include Chase First Checking℠ accounts, personal Chase savings accounts (excluding Chase Premier Savings℠ and Chase Private Client Savings℠), CDs, certain Chase Retirement CDs and certain Chase Retirement Money Market Accounts.

About the Author

Kim Olson began her freelance career after first pursuing an editorial career in college textbook development. She has a background in medical and legal transcription. Since 2006, she has ghostwritten thousands of articles for a variety of online venues with a focus on consumer finance.

Student banking

Discover products and financial education tailored to help parents and students at the Student Center. For parents with kids and teens, explore Chase High School Checking or Chase First Banking as an account that helps parents teach good money habits. Our Chase College Checking account has great benefits for students and new Chase customers can enjoy this special offer.

Is Chase Total Checking Worth the $12 Monthly Fee?

Credit: iStock.com/Georgijevic
Credit: iStock.com/Georgijevic

A Chase Total Checking account isn’t right for everyone. Therefore, it’s essential to consider both the advantages and disadvantages of getting one. Here are some important considerations when deciding whether to open an account:

  • Can you get the monthly fee waived? The bank makes it relatively easy to get the monthly service fee waived. But if your financial situation makes it hard to skip the fee every month, you may want to look for a checking account that’s truly free.
  • No interest is earned on balance: Also, it isn’t an interest-bearing account. While this isn’t uncommon for checking accounts, there are several credit unions and online banks that offer interest-bearing checking accounts.

You can get a Chase Savings account, which offers interest, but the annual percentage yield (APY) is a measly 0.01% — you can find rates upwards of 1.00% APY with several other banks and credit unions.

As an example, Axos Rewards Checking is an online-only checking account that offers customers up to 1.25% APY. However with Axos Bank, you won’t have access to in-branch customer service, and the online bank generally does not offer checking bonus for new customers.

Other Service and Transaction Fees

Monthly Maintenance: $12
Non-Chase ATM Transaction: $3
International ATM Withdrawal: $5
International Transfers and Inquiries: $3
International Exchange Fee: 3%
Overdraft / Insufficient Funds: $0-$34‡
Incoming Wire Transfer: $15
Outgoing Domestic Wire:– $35 per transfer if a banker helps you send the wire– $25 per transfer if you use chase.com or Chase Mobile app to send the wire
Outgoing International Wire: – $50 per transfer if a banker helps you send the wire in U.S. dollars or foreign currency– $40 per transfer if you use chase.com or Chase Mobile app to send the wire in U.S. dollars– $5 per transfer if you use chase.com or Chase Mobile app to send the wire in foreign currency– $0 per transfer if you use chase.com or Chase Mobile app to send the wire in foreign currency AND the amount is equal to $5,000 USD or more

‡ With Chase Overdraft AssistSM, there’s a $0 overdraft fee when you overdraw your account $50 or less. Chase won’t charge an overdraft fee if you are overdrawn $50 or less at the end of the business day. Chase may pay, for a $34 fee, overdraft transactions at its discretion based on your account history, deposits and transaction amount. If you’ve enrolled in Debit Card Coverage, everyday debit card purchases like groceries, may be approved at its discretion when you don’t have enough money in your account.

If you want to find lower checking account fees in general, you may want to examine online-only checking, but remember that online banks do not provide the in-person services that come with nationwide banks like Chase.

How to get a new debit card

Once you are approved for a checking account the debit card is often provided to you. If one is not automatically provided, you may be able to get a debit card through the following steps:

  • Call customer service. You can usually call your bank’s customer service line to request a debit card or to confirm if one has been mailed to your correct address.
  • Request a card online. You may be able to request a debit card through your bank account’s website or mobile app.

Before you can use your new debit card, you’ll need to activate it by calling the number on the back of the card. If this feature is available to you, you may be able to confirm receipt of your debit card and activate it through your bank account’s mobile app.

What do you need to get a debit card?

Once your checking account is opened you can get a debit card. There are a few documents you will need to open a checking account whether it is online or in person. Banks and other financial institutions may have different requirements. If you are a U.S. citizen or non-U.S. citizen residing in the U.S., here’s a list of a few documents you may need to open your account. However, check with your financial institution to determine what documents you will need. This could be a valid:

  • Government issued photo ID or driver’s license
  • Social security card or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
  • Passport
  • Birth Certificate
  • Proof of Address: It must show your name and address of your residence. This could be a current and valid:
    • Lease document
    • Mortgage document
    • Utility bill
    • Bank statement or credit card statement

How to set up a bank account

You may open a bank account through some of the following steps:

  1. Start the application process with your bank.
  2. Choose the right type of accounts (checking, student, etc.) for you.
  3. Read over your account materials. Once you are approved and your eligible bank account is opened you can request a debit card.

Money management made easy with extra current accounts

Keep your spending in check

Keep your spending in check

Want to set up an account just for socialising? That's easy. Set it up in seconds and see where your nights take you. 

You can instantly create an account for special occasions, an account for everyday purchases – or however you want to keep an eye on your money. You can even add notes to individual transactions – very handy if you want to jot down specific details about what you bought.

Take the hassle out of organising 

Take the hassle out of organising 

Each current account has its own account number, so if you're saving for a holiday with friends or family, or sharing household bills, you can create a dedicated account that everyone can pay into.

And if you no longer need an account that you created, you can transfer the balance instantly, and close it.

Easily set aside money for something special 

Easily set aside money for something special 

Have a money goal in mind? Maybe you'd like to make some home improvements, or perhaps you have a big occasion coming up? Create an account specifically for it – and even personalise it with a unique account name and image to keep you motivated.

What you need to open a checking account

  1. Verify your identity

    There are a few documents you will need to open a checking account whether it is online or in-person. Banks and other financial institutions may have different requirements. If you are a U.S. citizen or non-U.S. citizen residing in the U.S., here’s a list of a few documents you may need to open your account. However, check with your financial institution to determine what documents you will need. Identification: This could be a valid:

    • Government issued photo ID or driver’s license
    • Social security card or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
    • Passport
    • Birth Certificate
    • Proof of Address: It must show your name and address of your residence. This could be a current and valid:
      • Lease document
      • Mortgage document
      • Utility bill
      • Bank statement or credit card statement
  2. Make an opening deposit Some accounts require new account holders to make an opening deposit. This deposit can be made using an account and routing number to transfer funds from another bank account or with a check or money order. You can also visit a branch to deposit cash.
  3. Activate your debit card Since checking accounts are typically linked to debit cards, you’ll need to activate your card before using it. This can be done online or over the phone, or at the bank’s ATM. Usually, mailed separately from your debit card, you will receive a personal identification number (PIN) that is used when making debit card transactions.
  4. Start using your account Once the bank finishes setting up your account, it’s ready to go. You’ll now be able to make deposits, withdrawals and any other features that come with your account. Opening a checking account online is just one way to help manage your money. Compare Chase checking accounts to select the one that best fits your needs.

About us

Chase Bank serves nearly half of U.S. households with a broad range of products. To learn more, visit the Banking Education Center. For questions or concerns, please contact Chase customer service or let us know at Chase complaints and feedback.

What do I need to open a bank account?

There are a few documents you will need to open a bank account whether it is online or in-person. Banks and other financial institutions may have different requirements. If you are a U.S. citizen or non-U.S. citizen residing in the U.S., here’s a list of a few documents you may need to open your account. However, check with your financial institution to determine what documents you will need.

Identification:

This could be a valid:

  • Government issued photo ID or driver’s license
  • Social Security Card or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
  • Passport or Birth Certificate

Proof of Address:

It must show your name and address of your residence. This could be a current and valid:

  • Lease document
  • Mortgage document
  • Utility bill, bank statement or credit card statement
  • Student checking accounts may require proof of enrollment in an eligible school such as a student ID or acceptance letter.
  • If the bank has a minimum opening deposit requirement, you may need to provide the deposit at the time of applying.

Access to your cash

Users can withdraw cash for free at over 16,000 Chase ATMs around the country or visit more than 4,700 branches nationwide.

Daily withdrawal limits cap at $500 for non-Chase ATMs ($1,000 for Connecticut, New Jersey and New York), $1,000 for Chase ATMs and $3,000 for in-person withdrawals at the bank. Debit card users are limited to $3,000 in daily purchases.

Bottom line

The Chase Total Checking® account offers a high bonus offer when you set up direct deposit, plus easy ways to waive the monthly fee.

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