For some people with negative Chexsystems reports, second chance checking accounts may often be the way to go. (See the Non-Chexsystems Banks post for more information on what Chexsystems is and how to avoid being listed with them.) Second chance checking accounts are bank accounts that people can get when Chexsystems has blacklisted them with regular bank accounts. Most of the time second chance checking accounts are with slightly lower end banks. These banks decide to take a chance on high-risk consumers in order to make the monthly fee and provide a service to the people at the same time. If you do well with your new second chance account, within a certain amount of time, the bank usually agrees to upgrade you to their standard checking account automatically at no charge or obligation.
It is important to note that most banks that offer second chance checking accounts do not actually list them on their websites or materials as services that they provide. You have to know they are there. With that being said, here is a list of national banks (banks available in three or more states that encompass more than one basic region) that offer second chance checking accounts as I am aware of them:
-Woodforest National Bank: Located in many Walmart locations around the south and east coast and headquartered in Texas, where there are also actual brick and mortar locations that are separate from Walmart. I will do a review on this bank in the coming weeks, but I really enjoy banking with this bank. For a bank that has a partnership with Walmart, it is actually a very good bank to work with. I highly recommend them.
-Wells Fargo: They do not list their second chance checking account on their materials and it is relatively hard to find on their website. To find their Opportunity Package, click the link. I do not normally recommend this bank, but you can get your account without a monthly fee if you get cumulative direct deposits totaling $750 or more per month, which most of us do. This is a good deal.
-Chase: They are like Wells Fargo in that it is not called a second chance account. Chase calls it their Access Checking. It comes with a $15 mandatory fee, which has no workaround with direct deposit or high daily balances. There is also no overdraft protection. It comes like a prepaid card and reverses every transaction for which there are no funds.
-PNC Bank: I HIGHLY recommend this bank. I had this bank for about a year. I wish I never left. There isn’t a branch near my home now that I have moved, so I left the bank. I miss them, to be perfectly honest. If you have a PNC Bank nearby, get an account there. Their virtual wallet is incredible. However, they make you work for your second chance account. You have to join a Foundations of Money Management class and go through two hours of money management information and a large workbook in order to pass and be eligible for this account.
-US Bank: The only thing to note is that I have learned that US Bank is very inconsistent in their approval methods. Some people are approved and some are not, with seemingly no reasoning behind it, some are approved online, some need to go into a location to be approved, and others are never approved. Call your local branch before attempting anything.
-Bank of the West: Only on the west coast. It’s not a national bank, but it is in multiple states out west.
-BBVA Compass: Apparently they are very lenient with second chance patrons, but if you are listed on Early Warning Services, do not bother.
-Liberty Savings Bank: I have no data, but CNN reported that this smaller bank has a second chance account.
-TriCentury Bank: Apparently they do not use Chexsystems at all, but it is marketed as a second chance account. They seem to use a lot of affiliate marketing to target high risk consumers, and I have no reviews or information on them in any way, so be cautious.
For business accounts, it seems M&T Bank (headquartered in New York and branched all over the east coast and midwest United States), Chase, and Bank of America check the EIN or TIN of the business on Chexsystems but not the signer. Bank of the West and Woodforest National Bank are the only banks that I can verify have second chance accounts for business.
Attention bank representatives: If your bank does not offer a second chance account or if any of the included information is wrong, please comment below to instantly correct the record and I will contact your institution to verify the information and update this post. If your bank offers a second chance account that is not listed, please do the same to update the record and I will update the post upon verification.
If anyone has any information about other national second chance banks, please comment below and I will update the post upon verification. For information about local second chance banks in your area, please see Second Chance Checking Banks.