Chemical Bank Review: Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market and IRA Accounts

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Written By

Updated on Sunday, November 1, 2020

Chemical Bank’s checking account options

ChemBasic Checking

Living up to its name, ChemBasic Checking is the bank’s entry-level, no-frills checking account.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0 with eStatements ($3 with paper statements)
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

ChemBasic Checking is targeted toward customers who don’t keep large balances in their checking account or frequently write checks. If you’re looking for a no-fee account and can’t qualify for a no-fee relationship checking account, this might be your best option.

Customers who don’t select the eStatement option with this account will be charged a $3 monthly fee for paper statements. The account offers certain features common with entry-level checking accounts, such as eBanking, eBill Pay, Voice Banking, Mobile Banking and Mobile Remote Deposit Capture. However, the bank also offers, on approval, a 0.25% discount on a personal loan. ATM fees are fairly standard, which means they are free for network ATMs but charge a fee for out-of-network withdrawals. Overdraft fees are high, though they can be reduced with overdraft protection.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

ChemPlus Checking

A standard checking account reserved for those 55 and older.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

With the exception of the 55-and-over age requirement, the ChemPlus Checking account does provide a few additional features from that of the ChemBasic Checking account. For starters, this is the only Chemical Bank checking account that doesn’t charge a $3 fee for paper statements. Green-mint safety paper checks are also provided free of charge with this account, and customers can get a 50% discount on orders of other types of checks.

ChemPlus account holders are also entitled to free notary services and photocopies. Beyond that, the account comes with the standard eStatements, bill pay, mobile and telephone banking and the 0.25% personal loan discount.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Classic Checking

Classic Checking is Chemical Bank’s “traditional” checking account.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $5; $0 with a daily minimum balance of $500
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Classic Checking has the same features and benefits of the bank’s ChemBasic checking, with the only difference being the minimum balance requirements. Although technically there is no minimum opening deposit, customers are required to deposit $500 within 30 days of the account being opened to avoid a monthly maintenance fee.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Advantage Checking

Advantage Checking is the only Chemical Bank checking account that pays interest.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.01%$0
0.01%$10,000
0.01%$25,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $7; $0 with a daily minimum balance of $1,000, an average daily minimum balance of $1,500, the maintenance of a Midwest Savings Account or an aggregated daily minimum balance of $10,000 in other Chemical Bank deposit accounts
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Advantage Checking pays interest in three tiers, with the top tier for deposits of $25,000 or more. However, at the current time, the interest rate is the same for all tiers. Customers have 30 days after opening the account to deposit enough funds or open a Midwest Savings account to waive the monthly maintenance fee.

This account provides the same basic account features as other Chemical Bank checking accounts, including mobile, online, and telephone banking, along with the 0.25% discount on personal loans.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Green Checking

Green Checking is an environmentally friendly, completely paper-free account.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATMs; $0 foreign ATM fees if 20 debit card signature-based transactions are completed within each monthly cycle
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Chemical Bank’s Green Checking account is best suited for customers that either want to have a small carbon footprint or who otherwise don’t need check-writing capabilities. Account holders access their funds via electronic means or by using a debit card, rather than by writing checks. In that sense, Green Checking isn’t so much a “checking” account as a savings account with unlimited withdrawal capabilities. Other features of the account are the same as the bank’s other checking accounts, including online and mobile capabilities and the 0.25% discount on personal loans.

How to get Chemical Bank’s checking accounts

As noted above, Chemical Bank does not permit accounts to be opened online. To get any of the bank’s checking accounts, you’ll have to visit a Chemical Bank branch.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

magnifying glass

How Chemical’s checking accounts compare

Chemical Bank’s checking accounts are mostly variations on the same theme. Nearly every account offers the same basic benefits, with a few tweaks here and there. For example, there’s a dedicated account for those 55 and older, one for those who want to earn interest and one for those who want to go “green” and paperless, but beyond those distinctions, the accounts are mostly similar.

The sole account that pays interest, the Advantage Checking account, pays a low rate across the board, far lower than you can get even with the average checking account nationwide. Those looking for an interest-bearing account should search elsewhere, as Chemical’s rates are a world away from the best nationwide rates for checking accounts.

Chemical Bank’s savings account options

Classic Savings

Classic Savings is Chemical Bank’s traditional savings account, good for first-time savers or for those not in need of additional features.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $3; $0 with a daily minimum balance of $300
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32.00; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Classic Savings has no minimum opening deposit requirement, but a small maintaining balance is suggested to eliminate the small monthly fee. The ATM structure of the account is like the bank’s checking accounts, with free withdrawals from in-network ATMs and a small fee for others. Interest is paid on all balances with this account, but rates are not listed on the bank’s website, so you’ll have to visit a branch or talk to a banker to get the current APY. Withdrawals and transfers are limited to six per month, and additional transactions incur a $1 fee each.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Classic Savings for Minors

Chemical Bank’s Classic Savings account is also available in this format for minors.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM*
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32.00; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Chemical Bank offers a special version of Classic Savings for minors, with the most important distinction being that this account carries no monthly maintenance fee, regardless of balance. This account also requires special permission from a branch to have an ATM card issued. As with the Classic Savings account, a fee is charged for non-Chemical ATM withdrawals, and certain withdrawals and transfers in excess of six per month incur a $1 fee per transaction. Overdrafts also have the same fee structure as with Classic Savings.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Community Savings

Community Savings is a rare bird — a savings account that doesn’t pay any interest.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $3; $0 with a daily minimum balance of $300
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Community Savings seems like the account that Chemical Bank can do without. In terms of its overall structure, it’s nearly identical to the bank’s Classic Savings account, with no fee on in-network ATM withdrawals, no minimum required opening deposit and a small maintenance fee that can be avoided with a small balance. However, the account doesn’t pay interest. With the same cost and requirements as the Classic Savings account, customers would be better served opening that account — and earning interest — rather than keeping a Community Savings account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Holiday Savings

Holiday Savings is a typical club account, with interest earned on deposits until a mandatory distribution date near the end of the year.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

Chemical’s Holiday Savings account allows customers to make regular contributions the account over the course of the year, with a mandatory payout on either Oct. 10th or Oct. 31st. Any withdrawals made before this distribution date will trigger account closure. Interest is paid on Holiday Savings deposits, but you’ll have to contact a banker to get the current rates, as they are not available on the bank’s website.

Customers typically use this account to save for special occasions, such as weddings, vacations or holiday spending. Voice Banking, eBanking and Mobile Banking services are all available with this account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Midwest Savings

Midwest Savings is Chemical Bank’s top-tier checking account, good for those with higher balances who want to earn interest and gain a complementary checking account.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.01%$0
0.01%$5,000
0.01%$10,000
0.01%$25,000
0.01%$50,000
0.01%$100,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Opening a Midwest Savings account is one of the ways to get Chemical Bank’s Advantage Checking account without a monthly fee; it’s also a way to earn tiered interest on your savings. Somewhat unusual, the bank doesn’t pay its highest rates on the largest deposits. Once your account size reaches $50,000 or more, your money earns the same low rate paid on deposits of up to $10,000.

This account has no monthly fee and requires no balance to open, but withdrawals are limited to just four per month. After that, a $1 fee is assessed per transaction. Beyond these differences, Midwest Savings also offers the same features that can be found across Chemical Bank accounts, from online and mobile banking to a 0.25% APY discount on personal loans.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Health Savings

Chemical Bank’s Health Savings account is a typical HSA.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $3; $0 with eStatements
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

Chemical’s HSA requires no minimum deposit but does charge a small fee if you don’t sign up for eStatements. You can access the account via check writing or a debit card, but you won’t have ATM access. You also will not be allowed to overdraw the account. As with all HSAs, you must meet certain requirements to qualify for this account, such as being under age 65 and participating in a high-deductible health plan.

How to get Chemical Bank’s savings accounts

As mentioned above, Chemical Bank has no online account application. You must visit a branch to open an account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

magnifying glass

How Chemical Bank’s savings account compares

As with the bank’s checking account roster, there is no shortage of available savings accounts at Chemical Bank. Whether you’re looking for a traditional savings account, one for a minor, a holiday savings account or an HSA, you can find it at Chemical. Unfortunately, rates and features of all the accounts are a bit sparse.

When compared with the national average, none of Chemical Bank’s savings accounts can measure up, with each account failing to hit that benchmark. The best available savings rates can be found at other institutions.

Chemical Bank’s CD account options

Regular CDs

Chemical Bank offers an attractive range of CD maturities, with low minimums.
TermAPYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
15 months0.10%$100
18 months0.15%$100
24 months 0.15%$100
30 months0.20%$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 3 months’ interest for maturities of 3 to 12 months; 6 months’ interest for maturities of 13 to 35 months; 12 months’ interest for maturities of 36 to 60 months

For a large bank, Chemical offers a pretty low minimum balance requirement to open a regular CD account. Unless you’re looking for an extremely long maturity, you can likely find a term suiting your needs in Chemical’s regular CD lineup. Chemical offers both single maturity and automatic renewal certificates, with interest payments monthly, quarterly or at maturity. Chemical offers terms from 3 to 60 months but doesn’t advertise all of the rates. You need to call the bank for the complete list of rates.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Raise-Your-Rate CD

The Raise-Your-Rate CD allows you to adjust the yield on your CD to the current rate.
TermAPYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
36 months0.30%$100
48 months0.30%$100
60 months0.30%$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 12 months’ interest

Chemical’s Raise-Your-Rate CDs are only offered in 3 year, 4 year and 5 year maturities. Once per term, you can call the bank and have your rate raised to the then-current rate, up to a maximum increase of 1%. Minimums and withdrawal penalties are otherwise the same as with the bank’s regular CDs.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Add-On CD

Chemical Bank’s Add-On CD is a single-maturity CD that allows additional deposits before maturity.
TermAPYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
12 months0.10%$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 3 months’ interest

In all respects but one, Chemical Bank’s Add-On CD is a regular CD, including the minimum opening deposit and the early withdrawal penalty. The distinction is an important one, however. This 12 month CD allows customer to continue making deposits into the account until it matures. The only restriction is that deposits must be at least $100.

How to get Chemical Bank’s CDs

As mentioned above, you can’t open any Chemical Bank CDs online. You must visit a branch.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

magnifying glass

How Chemical Bank’s CD rates compare

Overall, Chemical Bank’s CDs are nothing to write home about. Although it’s nice to have the option to choose a Raise-Your-Rate or Add-On CD, the rates paid on Chemical’s CDs of all types are below average. While not all banks can compete with the very best available national CD rates, even the average CD rate tops those offered at Chemical Bank, for every maturity.

Chemical Bank’s money market account options

Money Market

This account is Chemical Bank’s traditional money market account, combining features of both checking and savings accounts.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.01%$0
0.01%$10,000
0.01%$25,000
0.01%$50,000
0.01%$100,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10; $0 with $2,500 average daily minimum balance
  • ATM fee: None; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Chemical Bank’s Money Market account has a fairly high monthly maintenance fee, but you can avoid it with a $2,500 average daily balance. Per Federal Regulation D, certain transactions, including pre-authorized withdrawals or transfers, are limited up to six per month. Interest is paid in tiers, with the highest rates paid on deposits of at least $100,000.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Premier Money Market

Chemical Bank’s Premier Money Market account allows customers the opportunity to earn higher interest rates but requires a larger maintaining balance.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.01%$0
0.05%$10,000
0.05%$50,000
0.10%$100,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $30; $0 with average daily minimum balance of $35,000
  • ATM fee: $0; $2.50 per withdrawal from other/foreign ATM
  • ATM refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $32; limit of 10 overdraft and NSF Fees ($320) per day; $10 per transfer with overdraft protection

Chemical Bank knows how to put the “premier” into its Premier Money Market account. True, the account pays higher interest rates than those in its regular Money Market account. However, it takes a lot of money to get that benefit. The $30 monthly maintenance fee is one of the highest bank account fees you can find. To avoid it, you’ll need to deposit 14 times the amount required for the bank’s regular Money Market account, and you’ll need to keep it there. Otherwise, the accounts are identical.

How to get Chemical Bank’s money market account

As mentioned above, you’ll have to visit a branch if you want to open a Chemical Bank money market account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

magnifying glass

How Chemical Bank’s money market accounts compare

While the Chemical Bank Money Market account is a perfectly normal, serviceable money market account, the Premier Money Market is one of the most expensive accounts you can find.

With an astronomical annual fee that can only be waived with a significant and ongoing minimum balance, the interest rates paid should be commensurately higher. Sadly, that is not the case. Rates on the Premier Money Market account only climb above the national average on deposits of $100,000 or more, and even this “top” rate is nowhere near the best available money market rates nationwide.

Chemical Bank’s IRA account options

IRA Regular CDs

Chemical Bank’s IRA CD lineup has varying rates and maturities, but you’ll have to check with a bank to get all current options.
TermAPYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
15 months0.10%$100
18 months0.15%$100
24 months0.15%$100
30 months0.20%$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 3 months’ interest for maturities of 3 to 12 months; 6 months’ interest for maturities of 13 to 35 months; 12 months’ interest for maturities of 36 to 60 months

Chemical’s IRA CDs are similar to the lineup in its non-IRA accounts, but there are a few differences in terms of available maturities. Only a few of the bank’s rates are published on the website. For complete details, you’ll have to contact the bank directly. Chemical offers both single maturity and automatic renewal certificates in its IRAs, with interest payments monthly, quarterly or at maturity.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

IRA Variable-Rate CD

Chemical Bank offers a Variable-Rate IRA CD in a single maturity; this CD is not available in the bank’s taxable accounts.
TermAPYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
6 months0.05%$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 3 months’ interest

Chemical Bank’s IRA Variable-Rate CD is an unusual product. Coming in a single, short maturity of six months, the CD pays a rate that can be adjusted after purchase by the bank, but not by the customer. The rate on this variable CD is currently the same as with a regular six-month IRA CD. Minimums and penalties on this account are the same as with regular IRA CDs.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

IRA Raise-Your-Rate

The IRA Raise-Your-Rate CD is a carbon copy of the bank’s non-IRA CD of the same name.
TermAPYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
36 months0.30%$100
48 months0.30%$100
60 months0.30%$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 12 months’ interest

Chemical’s Raise-Your-Rate IRA CDs are offered in 3 year, 4 year and 5 year maturities, just like the non-IRA version. Once per term, you can call the bank and have your rate raised to the then-current rate, up to a maximum increase of 1%. Minimums and withdrawal penalties are otherwise the same as with the bank’s regular IRA CDs.

How to get Chemical Bank’s IRA accounts

As with the bank’s non-IRA products, if you want to open an IRA account at Chemical Bank, you’ll have to visit a branch.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Chemical Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

magnifying glass

How Chemical Bank’s IRA accounts compare

Chemical Bank’s IRA CDs share the same lackluster yields as the bank’s regular CD lineup. You’ll be able to find better IRA CD rates elsewhere.

Overall review of Chemical Bank’s products

Chemical Bank offers a large number of both checking and savings accounts, but not one of them particularly stand out. Only a single checking account pays interest, and its rates — along with the rates on all of Chemical’s savings accounts — are below average.When it comes to the bank’s money market and CD accounts, sub-par rates continue to prevail.

New customers looking for a bank with a wide range of account options might be curious about Chemical Bank, as they offer accounts for seemingly any need. However, upon comparison shopping, it’s clear that higher rates can be had elsewhere for nearly any type of account. You can find better options at competitor banks.