Chase Bank Business Account Review: Why We Caution against the Biggest Bank

We explain all the reasons you should avoid Chase Bank’s business accounts—and a couple reasons you might go with Chase anyway.
JP Morgan Chase Bank Business
2.1 out of 5 stars
2.1
  • Check
    Variety of business bank accounts and other financial services
  • Check
    Widespread availability in 29 states
  • X
    Long history of sketchy and illegal practices
  • X
    Mediocre to negative customer reviews

JPMorgan Chase & Co., better known as Chase Bank to its friends and customers, is the largest bank in the United States.1 No wonder you’re thinking about doing your business banking with this well-known giant.

But should you? Or should you take your business’s business to a different bank?

In this review, we’ll tell you all about Chase’s business bank accounts, its other financial products for business, and what customers have to say about it.

Oh, and we’ll let you know why we strongly recommend you take your business elsewhere.

Ready for the scoop?

Chase is best for businesses in Hawaii. (Maybe. If they have to.)

We want to be completely honest here: we have a hard time saying that Chase is best for anyone or anything.

In part, that’s because Chase doesn’t really have any standout features. Other banks have cheaper business bank accounts. You can find higher annual percentage yield (APY) on business savings accounts and CDs elsewhere. Its business financing is fine, but not the best. In other words, Chase is just kind of okay.

Then there’s that other thing: Chase’s long and storied history of, well, super sketchy stuff. Here’s a small sampling of things Chase has been sued for in the last decade:

  • Discriminating against black and Latinx mortgage borrowers2
  • Charging customers for credit monitoring they didn’t get3
  • Processing transactions out of order so it could profit from overdraft fees4
  • Improperly foreclosing or overcharging military members on their mortgages5
  • Conducting illegal business with customers in Iran, Sudan, Cuba, and Liberia6
Best Small Business Banks
KeyBank
Best for cash businesses
Huntington Bank
Best one-stop shop
Citizens Bank
Best customer service
BlueVine
Best checking account
Learn more about our top brands.

Since you don’t have all day, we’ll stop there. But let us stress that there is much, much, much more where those came from. And sure, lots of banks have faced government action (yes, we’re talking about you, Wells Fargo and CitiBank!), but few have quite as many as Chase.

Chase fast facts

Feature
Chase

Online banking

Icon Yes  Dark

Mobile banking

Icon Yes  Dark

In-person banking

Icon Yes  Dark

Branch locations

5,000

ATMs

16,000

24/7 support

Icon Yes  Dark

Customer service options

Phone, email

And sure, those scandals may not have specifically affected Chase business banking customers. But with a history like that, we wouldn’t be surprised if the next scandal does. (Because given Chase’s track record, it’s safe to assume more scandals are coming.)

Plus, given that many of Chase’s lawsuits are about problems that directly affect the consumer—from fraudulent charges to inflated interest rates—we can’t just look the other way. This is your business we’re talking about, after all. We don’t want to let a bank scam you out of your hard-earned money, no matter how big and old that bank is.

Fortunately, the vast majority of states have better banks to choose from, so you can take your business dollars elsewhere.

Except Hawaii. Sorry, Hawaii.

us map showing states where chase is available: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Washington DC, West Virginia, Wisconsin

Chase availability

So if you’re in Hawaii, we might tentatively agree that if you really need a business bank account pronto and you don’t have time to shop around, you could possibly bank at Chase—so long as you watch your money like a hawk.

And even then, we really suggest you go with an online bank for small business instead, or perhaps your local credit union. Maybe go look at Hawaii Community Federal Credit Union, for example?

But if you still think you want to bank with Chase, despite our warnings, then we at least want you to be well-informed about what it has to offer. So let’s explore what products and services Chase has for small business.

Chase checking and savings accounts

As you’d expect from a big bank like Chase, you have choices between several different types of business checking and savings accounts. Let’s look at your checking choices first.

Checking accounts

Chase has three business checking accounts (plus one interest-bearing checking alternative, if that’s your jam).

Chase small-business checking accounts

FeatureBusiness Complete BankingPerformance Business CheckingPlatinum Business Checking
Min. opening depositUnlistedUnlistedUnlisted
Monthly service fee$15$30$95
Monthly fee waivable?Icon Check  DarkIcon Check  DarkIcon Check  Dark
APYN/AVariableN/A
ATM fees$0$0$0
Out-of-network ATM fees$2.50/transaction$0$0
Free transactions20250500
Additional transactions$0.40 ea.$0.40 ea.$0.40 ea.
Free cash depositsUp to $5,000Up to $20,000Up to $25,000
Cash deposit fee$2.50 per $1,000$2.50 per $1,000$2.50 per $1,000
Open an account

Data effective 10/26/20. At publishing time, rates, fees, and requirements are current but are subject to change. Offers may not be available in all areas.

Chase’s Business Complete Checking is its cheapest, most basic account. You can waive the monthly fee by keeping a $2,000 minimum balance, linking it to a Chase Private Client Checking account, making $2,000 in purchases on a Chase Ink credit card, or by making $2,000 in merchant services deposits. You can also get a $3 discount on the monthly service fee by choosing paperless billing.

If you want more free transactions, higher free cash deposit amounts, and fewer ATM fees, you can go for Performance Business Checking. Just know that if you want to waive the monthly fee, you’ll need a daily average of $35,000 across your Chase business accounts.

You can also get an interest-bearing version: Chase Performance Business Checking with Interest. It’s pretty much the same account, just with the chance to earn some interest on your money. You can earn 0.01% APY on your Performance Business Checking account―certainly nothing to write home about. (By way of comparison, BlueVine’s free business checking account offers 1% APY.)

Finally, you have Platinum Business Checking. It gives you the most free transactions and cash deposits, but it has one of the highest monthly fees we’ve seen. And to waive that maintenance fee, you’ll need a daily average of $100,000 in your business banking or investment accounts.

Chase online banking
Info
Like most banks, Chase has both a website and a mobile app that you can use to access your business bank account online. Though, you’ll still need to visit a branch for some things (like depositing cash or opening an account).

These accounts don’t have the highest costs we’ve ever seen, but they’re far from the lowest we’ve seen. We’ve found cheaper rates and fees at both online banks for business and regional banks (like TD Bank). But Chase does sometimes offer deals for new business customers, like a $200 bonus when you open a checking account.

Is that enough to make up for its mediocre pricing? Up to you.

Chase also has some specialized checking accounts, including both analyzed checking accounts and escrow checking accounts for attorneys and real estate brokers.

Chase specialized business checking accounts

FeatureAnalysis Business CheckingAnalysis Business Checking with InterestIOLTA/IOTA/ IOLA/IBRETA/ IOREBTA/IRETA/ COLTAF/CARHOF/UARHOF
Min. opening depositUnlistedUnlistedUnlisted
Monthly service fee$25$25 $15 in IL or NY; $0 elsewhere
APYN/A0.01%0.18%
Transaction fees$0.20–$2 per item$0.20–$2 per item$0
Free cash depositsUp to $10,000Up to $10,000N/A
Cash deposit fee$2.50 per $1,000$2.50 per $1,000$2.50 per $1,000
Open an account

Data effective 10/26/20. At publishing time, rates, fees, and requirements are current but are subject to change. Offers may not be available in all areas.

Its analyzed checking accounts work like any other analysis checking account, meaning you earn credit based on your account balance. Then that credit gets applied to your account fees. So if you keep a high account balance, analysis checking accounts can offer a great deal. (For lower account balances, though, the fees can eat you alive.)

Chase offers two versions of its analysis checking: one earns interest, while the other doesn’t.

As for Chase’s escrow accounts? You just need to know that they comply with all the relevant regulations. (And if you don’t already know what these accounts are and how they work, that means that they don’t apply to you.)

Savings accounts

In addition to its checking accounts, Chase also has a handful of savings accounts for you to choose from: two standard savings accounts and certificates of deposit (CDs). (If you want a money market account, you’ll need to go elsewhere.)

Chase small-business savings accounts

FeatureTotal SavingsPremier SavingsSmall-business CDs
Min. opening depositUnlistedUnlisted$1,000
Monthly maintenance fee$10$20N/A
Monthly fee waivable?
Icon Check  Dark
Icon Check  Dark
N/A
APY0.01%0.01%-0.05%0.01%–0.05%
TermN/AN/A1-120 mos.
Free cash deposits per cycleUp to $5,000Up to $10,000N/A
Cash deposit fee$2.50 per $1,000$2.50 per $1,000N/A
Penalty-free withdrawal
6/cycle
6/cycle
Icon Close  Dark
Open an account

Data effective 10/26/20. At publishing time, rates, fees, and requirements are current but are subject to change. Offers may not be available in all areas.

The Total Savings account has a low monthly maintenance fee, which you can waive by keeping a $1,000 account balance. Another option for waiving the fee? Linking your Total Savings account to a Total Business Checking account. Pretty easy. While it does earn some interest, the APY for Total Savings is quite low.

For a shot at a higher (but still low) APY, you can opt for Premier Savings instead. In this account, the more you save, the higher your APY. And you’ll need a healthy account balance to waive the monthly service fee. Waiving the fee requires a $25,000 average balance, or you can link your account to a Performance Business Checking, Analysis Business Checking, or Platinum Business Checking account.

Note that Chase has a limit of six transactions per monthly cycle on its Total Savings and Premier Savings accounts. That used to be because of Regulation D, a federal rule that limited transactions on savings accounts. But now that the law has changed, Chase has kept its limit in place anyway. So if you make more than six transactions per month from your Chase savings account, you’ll get hit with a $5 fee per transaction.

Your final savings option? Chase’s certificates of deposit. But, uh, the APY on these isn’t that great. The starting APY is quite low, and even the maximum APY is way lower than you can find from other banks. And remember, you won’t be able to add or withdraw funds for the length of your term—between 1 and 120 months, depending on what term you choose.

Any of this sound tempting? Then let’s figure out if you should take the plunge to apply with Chase.

Reasons to bank with Chase

This is where we’d normally tell you about some cool feature that makes Chase stand out from the crowd. But as you may have noticed, we don’t have a ton of praise for Chase Bank.

Still, in the interest of fairness, we’ll tell you some reasons you might want to bank with Chase, despite our protestations.

For example, as we discussed above, you might live in Hawaii and have limited options. It happens.

Or maybe you already have and like a personal account with Chase. And you might find that Chase is just really convenient, like this business owner did:

Icon Quote  Dark
“I chose [Chase] because I personally bank at Chase, which makes transfers between the accounts easier. I also received a $300 bonus when I opened my Chase business checking account, which sweetened the deal. There is also a branch very close to my house, which makes it convenient if I ever have to speak in person with a business banker.”

We get it—you’re a busy business owner. Maybe a nearby location to drop off cash deposits really matters to you. In that case, Chase might work well for your business.

And as Logan Allec noted, Chase often has special offers when you open a business checking account (only $200 as of this writing). So that’s another nice incentive for you.

Or maybe you’re just really into some of the other products Chase has to offer your business.

Other small-business products and services from Chase

Chase offers more than just banking. It also has a variety of financing (including loans, lines of credit, and business credit cards), plus some other services for business owners.

Small-business financing

Chase is pretty cagey about its financing. If you want to apply—or get more information—you have to visit your local branch. Feels pretty inconvenient in this age of online lenders, doesn’t it?

(Other banks we’ve reviewed have prominent phone numbers and online chat options to answer any questions you have. Chase doesn’t.)

Compare Chase’s small-business lending

Loan type
Loan min./max.
Lowest listed rate
Term
Get a loan

Business Line of Credit

$10,000/$500,000

Unlisted

Revolving w/ 5 yr. renewal

Commercial Line of Credit

$500,000 and up

Unlisted

12–24 mos. renewable

Business Term Loan

$5,000 and up

Unlisted

12–84 mos.

Equipment financing

$10,000 and up

Unlisted

Up to 7 yrs.

Commercial Real Estate Financing

$50,000 and up

Unlisted

7–10 yrs.

SBA loansUp to $12.5 millionUnlistedUnlisted

Data effective 10/26/20. At publishing time, rates, fees, and requirements are current but are subject to change. Offers may not be available in all areas.

Chase doesn’t publish its small-business loan application criteria (again, you have to visit your branch to find out), but if it’s anything like other big banks, you’ll need a good credit score, at least a couple years in business, and revenue of at least $200,000. In return, you’ll probably get lower rates than you could find through an alternative lender.

One good thing about Chase’s lending? It’s an SBA preferred lender. So if you’ve been thinking about getting an SBA loan (a loan backed by the US Small Business Administration), Chase can help you get approved faster than many other lenders.

You can also get trade financing with Chase. But surprise! You’ll need to visit a Chase branch to get any details on that.

Small-business credit cards

Aside from its loans and lines of credit, Chase also offers six business credit cards. You can get various types of rewards from these Visa cards, such as cash back and travel points. Plus, all six cards have point or cash bonus offers when you first open the card, though you may need to spend a certain amount to qualify.

As you pick your business credit card, keep in mind that several of these cards do have an annual fee. You may want to do some quick math and make sure you won’t end up paying more in annual fees than you’ll be earning in rewards.

Merchant services

Need a way to accept credit card payments? Enter Chase’s merchant services.

Chase has plenty of terminal options, including mobile credit card readers, standalone payment terminals, and even virtual terminals. You can also build your own point-of-sale (POS) system with its POS tablet and accessories (like a cash drawer and receipt printer).

And if you already have a terminal or POS system you like, you may be able to use Chase’s payment processing with your existing solution. A Chase payment specialist can help you figure out how.

Miscellaneous

Finally, Chase has a few more business services that may interest you:

  • Cash collection services
  • QuickDeposit desktop check scanner
  • Bill pay directory

What customers say about Chase

Chase has a pretty poor 1.3 out of 5 on Trustpilot,7 but it fares better on Bank Branch Locator, where it has a 3.1 out of 5.8

Many negative reviews complain about poor customer service, which isn’t unusual among the banks we’ve reviewed. More unusual? Allegations that Chase doesn’t honor its offers (like giving you $200 for opening a business checking account) and complaints that Chase mishandles fraud cases. While we can’t necessarily verify these stories, they wouldn’t surprise us, given Chase’s legal record.

So what about the good reviews? While we saw some glowing reviews about Chase’s mobile app, most of the good reviews praise its customer service. In fact, when we asked small-business owners about their bank accounts, we got a couple positive reviews of Chase’s customer service. Like this one:

Icon Quote  Dark
“[Chase is] great. The branch is always welcoming and friendly. I always have a short wait to see someone and most of the time they can resolve an issue while I'm in the branch. My only dislike is that the rates are so low that we don't get interest on the cash we have in the account.”

One last thing, while we’re on the topic of Chase’s reputation. When we wrote “Best Banks for Small-Business Checking” last year, Chase had an F with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) because of government action against it. Sometime in the past year, that score was upgraded to an A+, presumably because the case has been settled.9

That probably says more about how the BBB scores businesses than it does about how much you should trust Chase, though. (BBB scores often reflect how much a business is willing to pay rather than how good it is—learn more in our guide to the Better Business Bureau.)

The takeaway

Look, we’re pretty skeptical of Chase business banking—or more accurately, we’re pretty skeptical of Chase as a whole. It’s got a history of bad behavior, and we’ve seen better deals elsewhere.

So while Chase Bank offers plenty to businesses, like bank accounts, financing, and merchant services, we’d rather see you give your cash to a different bank.

But ultimately, you know your needs, you know your business, and you know what you’re comfortable with. At this point, the choice is yours. We just hope we helped you make it.

Want an alternative to Chase? Great! Check out our ranking of the best banks for small-business to find one.

Disclaimer

At Business.org, our research is meant to offer general product and service recommendations. We don't guarantee that our suggestions will work best for each individual or business, so consider your unique needs when choosing products and services.

Sources
1. Federal Reserve, “Large Commercial Banks.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
2. USA Today, “JPMorgan Pays $55M to Settle Mortgage Discrimination Lawsuit.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
3. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, “CFPB Orders Chase and JPMorgan Chase to Pay $309 Million Refund for Illegal Credit Card Practices.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
4. Reuters, “JPMorgan Settles Overdraft Fee Case for $110 Million.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
5. Bloomberg, “JPMorgan Settles Military Mortgage Suits for $56 Million.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
6. U.S. Department of the Treasury, “Release of Civil Penalties Information - JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Settlement.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
7. Trustpilot, “Chase.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
8. Bank Branch Locator, “Chase Bank.” Accessed October 26, 2020.
9. Better Business Bureau, “JPMorgan Chase & Co..” Accessed October 26, 2020.

Chloe Goodshore
Written by
Chloe Goodshore
Chloe covers business financing and loans for Business.org. She has worked with many small businesses over the past 10 years, from video game stores to law firms. Those years watching frustrated business owners try to sift through their many options gave her a passion for breaking down complex business topics. She wants to help business owners spend less time agonizing over their businesses so they can spend more time running them.
Recent Articles
How to Avoid Hidden Business Banking Fees
How to Avoid Hidden Business Banking Fees: 9 Questions to Ask
“Hidden Fee” . . . or Normal Fee You Just Didn’t Know About? No one...
BlueVine vs. Novo Banking
BlueVine vs. Novo Banking 2021
We compare bank account costs, access, and more at BlueVine and Novo. Best business checking...
BlueVine vs. NBKC
BlueVine vs. NBKC Banking 2021
We compare banking options, costs, perks, and more to help you find the right business...
Best Online Business Bank Accounts
10 Best Online Business Bank Accounts 2021
We compared checking accounts, savings accounts, and other banking services at more than two dozen...