Second Chance Checking Accounts Across the U.S.

Second chance checking is an option if you've been rejected for an account due to a bad banking history. Accounts are available in all 50 states.

On a similar note...
On a similar note...
Second Chance Checking Accounts Across the U.S.

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If you've ever been turned down for a checking account because of past banking issues — such as an account closed due to unpaid overdraft fees — second chance checking could offer you another shot at banking.

» Ready to compare accounts? Skip ahead to our list of banks that offer second chance checking

What is second chance checking?

Serious banking issues can put you on a list held by consumer reporting agency ChexSystems. Banks look at it or similar sources before approving new accounts — and having a flawed banking history from bounced checks, unpaid fees, or account closures makes it less likely you'll be approved.

Second chance checking accounts can help people rebuild their banking histories, but they don't have all the services that come with regular checking accounts.

Some banks and credit unions offer "second chance" checking accounts for people in this situation. The accounts can help people rebuild their banking histories, but they don't have all the services that come with regular checking accounts.

What are the pros and cons of second chance checking?

Second chance checking accounts usually have monthly fees that can't be waived, and they often carry more requirements than standard checking accounts, such as setting up direct deposit or completing a money management class. You typically can't enroll in an overdraft program, since the point of a second chance account is to demonstrate that you can avoid overdrawing.

These checking accounts can help improve banking history, but they don't rebuild credit. For that, consider a secured credit card.

Despite their limitations, second chance checking accounts often beat alternatives, such as prepaid debit cards or check-cashing services.

Despite their limitations, second chance checking accounts often beat alternatives, such as prepaid debit cards or check-cashing services. These can come with costly transaction fees and balance requirements, and may also lack convenient features like online banking.

If you can avoid negative balances or fees, many second chance checking accounts let you upgrade to a regular checking within six months to a year.

» Want to explore another option? Check out our roundup of the best prepaid debit cards

Picking a second chance checking account

The best second chance accounts come with:

  • Low or no monthly fees.

  • No minimum balance requirements.

  • Services such as debit card access, online bill pay and unlimited check writing privileges — for free.

  • Few limits, such as daily or monthly maximum transaction amounts.

Not all second chance checking accounts have these features. Some charge monthly fees as high as $20 and don't issue debit cards or checks to account holders. Check the fees and requirements before applying.

National second chance banking

A few banks and financial companies backed by banks offer second chance checking nationwide:

  • Chime (account name: Spending Account, available online)

  • Green Dot Bank (account name: GoBank, available online and at Walmart stores).

  • Radius Bank (account name: Essential Checking, available online).

  • Varo (account name: Bank Account, available online)

  • Wells Fargo (account name: Clear Access Banking, available in 39 states and Washington, D.C.).

Most major banks don’t offer second chance checking, but many community banks and credit unions have them under various names, such as Opportunity Checking and Fresh Start Checking.

If you can't find one in the lists below, see if your community participates in a Bank On program. This is an initiative many communities have joined that lets city governments and local banks work together to serve those who are trying to get back into the banking system. Another option is to consider a prepaid debit card with robust services and few fees.

Compare second chance checking accounts

GoBank GoBank Checking Account
NerdWallet rating 
Read review

GoBank

  • Monthly fee: $8.95 (unless waived).

  • Overdraft fee: None.

  • Special feature: Up to 2 day early direct deposit.

Varo Varo Bank Account
NerdWallet rating 

at Varo, Deposits are FDIC Insured

Varo

  • Monthly fee: None.

  • Overdraft fee: None.

  • Special feature: 55,000 free ATMs.

Radius Bank Essential Checking
NerdWallet rating 
Read review

Radius Bank Essential Checking

  • Monthly fee: $9.

  • Overdraft fee: $5.

  • Special feature: Possible to upgrade to Rewards Checking in a year.

Regional and state-based second chance checking accounts

Some regional banks and credit unions offer second chance accounts, though customers must often live in certain states or meet other special membership requirements. Here's a list of several such institutions.

American Airlines Credit Union: Ascend Checking Appalachian Community Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Bank of the Ozarks: Pathway Checking BBVA: Easy Checking BOK Financial: Opportunity Banking Centennial Bank: Opportunity 100 Checking City National Bank: Bounce Back Checking Corporate America Family Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Fifth Third Bank: Express Banking First Financial Bank: CLEANslate Checking Hope Credit Union: Easy Checking InTouch Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking OneUnited Bank: U2 e-Checking Premier Bank: StartFresh Checking Republic Bank: Checking Builder Simmons Bank: Affordable Advantage Checking Staley Credit Union: Renew Checking Unify Financial Credit Union: Right Start Checking Webster Bank: Opportunity Checking Woodforest National Bank: Second Chance Checking

Want (or need) an account at a state-based financial institution? Find options by clicking below.

Alabama Credit Union: On-Track Checking Avadian Credit Union: e-Checking Azalea City Credit Union: Opportunity Draft Community Bank & Trust: Second Slice Checking Family Security Credit Union: Give Me a Break Checking First National Bank: Credit Builder Gulf Winds Federal Credit Union: MyOpportunity Checking United Bank: Gateway Checking

True North Federal Credit Union: True Options Checking

Alhambra Credit Union: Basic Checking Banner Federal Credit Union: Opportunity Checking Copper State Credit Union: Try Again Checking MariSol Federal Credit Union: Start Again Basic Checking Pima Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Tucson Old Pueblo Credit Union: Mission Checking

Diamond Bank: Encore Checking Red River Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking River Valley Community Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Befit Financial Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking E-Central Credit Union: E-Builder Checking Excite Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Foothill Credit Union: Rebound Checking Los Angeles Federal Credit Union: Second Chance Checking North County Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Premier America Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Priority One Credit Union: New Leaf Checking Self-Help Federal Credit Union: Access Checking Strata Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Liberty Savings Bank: Clean Slate Checking NuVista Federal Credit Union: The Last Chance Checking

Eastern Savings Bank: Restart Checking Finex Credit Union: Re-Start Checking Hartford Federal Credit Union: 2nd Chance Checking Tobacco Valley Teachers Federal Credit Union: myChance Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for regional and national options.

No accounts found at financial institutions based here. Check for regional and national options.

Alabama Credit Union: On-Track Checking Axiom Bank: Opportunity Checking CenterState Bank: Fresh Start Checking Central Credit Union of Florida: Fresh Start Checking Community First Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Compass Financial Federal Credit Union: Restart Checking First American Bank: Fresh Start Checking First Florida Credit Union: Smart Track Checking Gold Coast Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Gulf Winds Federal Credit Union: MyOpportunity Checking JetStream Federal Credit Union: Second Chance Checking Liberty Savings Bank: Clean Slate Checking McCoy Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Members First Credit Union of Florida: Second Chance Checking Okaloosa County Teachers Federal Credit Union: Second Chance Checking One South Bank: Opportunity Checking Priority Credit Union: Restart Checking San Antonio Citizens Federal Credit Union: Checking Rebuilder Self-Help Credit Union: Personal Checking South Florida Federal Credit Union: Aspire Checking United Bank: Gateway Checking

Community Bank & Trust: Second Slice Checking Excel Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Georgia United Credit Union: Restart Checking Georgia's Own Credit Union: Resolution Checking Health Center Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Members United Credit Union: Another Chance Checking Peach State Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for regional and national options.

Latah Credit Union: Second Chance Checking

Catholic & Community Credit Union: Rebound Checking First American Bank: Fresh Start Checking First National Bank and Trust Company: Renew Checking Marquette Bank: ReStart Checking Prairieland Federal Credit Union: Not Your Normal Checking2

Centra Credit Union: Opportunity Checking Diamond Valley Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union: Opportunity Checking Heritage Federal Credit Union: 2nd Chance Checking Horizon Bank: Fresh Start Checking Park Community Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Regional Federal Credit Union: First Step Checking

Collins Community Credit Union: Take2 Checking Federation Bank: Fresh Start Checking Greater Iowa Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking North Iowa Community Credit Union: Fresh Start Debit

Central National Bank: New Opportunity Checking United Consumers Credit Union: Second Chance Checking

The Cecilian Bank: Choice Opportunity Checking Central Bank: Clean Start Checking Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union: Opportunity Checking First United Bank and Trust Company: Fresh Start Checking FNB Bank: Start Again Checking Heritage Federal Credit Union: 2nd Chance Checking Home Federal Bank: Square One Checking Park Community Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Neighbors Federal Credit Union: Basic Checking Pelican State Credit Union: Horizon Checking Southwest Louisiana Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Five County Credit Union: 2nd Chance Checking

Central Credit Union of Maryland: Renew Checking Clear Mountain Bank: StartFresh Checking Market USA Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Security Plus Federal Credit Union: Revive Checking

Alden Credit Union: No Boundaries Checking Athol Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Washington Savings Bank: Online Rewards Checking

Credit Union One: Basic Checking Horizon Bank: Fresh Start Checking Marshall Community Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Members First Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Michigan State University Federal Credit Union: Rebuild Checking

Minnesota Valley Federal Credit Union: Second Chance Checking WESTconsin Credit Union: Foundations Checking

Citizens National Bank: Clean Slate Checking Gulf Coast Community Credit Union: New Chance Checking Magnolia Federal Credit Union: Opportunity Checking MUNA Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Columbia Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Electro Savings Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking First State Community Bank: New Opportunity Checking Health Care Family Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Montgomery Bank: Montgomery New Start Checking St. Louis Community Credit Union: Second Chance Checking Town & Country Bank: Opportunity Checking United Consumers Credit Union: Second Chance Checking United Credit Union: Restore Checking Wood & Huston Bank: StartFresh Checking

Valley Credit Union: Opportunity Checking

Central National Bank: New Opportunity Checking Western Heritage Federal Credit Union: Simple & Free Checking

Clark County Credit Union: CheckAgain Checking WestStar Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for national options.

Credit Union of New Jersey: Right Turn Checking Jersey Shore Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking United Teletech Financial Federal Credit Union: United Fresh Start Checking

Bank of Albuquerque: Opportunity Banking Lea County State Bank: Opportunity Checking

Alternatives Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Centra Credit Union: Opportunity Checking Financial Trust Federal Credit Union: 2nd Chance Checking Fulton Savings Bank: New Opportunity Checking Genesee Valley Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

American Partners Federal Credit Union: EZ 4U Checking Charlotte Metro Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Excite Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for national options.

Buckeye State Credit Union: Second Chance Checking Eaton Family Credit Union, Inc.: Second Chance Checking Hopewell Federal Credit Union: Rebound Checking Kemba Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Members Trust Federal Credit Union: Trust and Alternative Checking Sun Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Superior Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Allegiance Credit Union: Second Chance Checking Bank of Oklahoma: Opportunity Banking Citizens Bank of Edmond: Fresh Start Checking Oklahoma Educators Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking TTCU Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Weokie (Credit Union): Fresh Start Checking Western Sun Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Point West Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Sun Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Utilities Employees Credit Union: Green Light Checking West Branch Valley Federal Credit Union: Back on Track Checking WSFS Bank: Fresh Start Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for regional and national options.

Caro Smart Financial Solutions: Rebound Checking Carolina Trust Federal Credit Union: Encore Checking HopeSouth Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Market USA Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Peach State Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Vital Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for national options.

First National Bank: Credit Builder Greater Eastern Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Holston Methodist Federal Credit Union: Second Chance Checking Home Federal Bank: Square One Checking Select Seven Credit Union: Second Chance Sharedraft

4U Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Abilene Teachers Federal Credit Union: Restart Checking AFFCU: SAF-T Checking Allied Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Associated Credit Union of Texas: 180 Checking Bank of Texas: Opportunity Banking Baptist Credit Union: Draft Builder Checking Chocolate Bayou Credit Union: Clean Slate Checking Diamond Bank: Encore Checking First Service Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Houston Metropolitan Federal Credit Union: Freedom Checking Kelly Community Federal Credit Union: Smart Choice Checking MemberSource Credit Union: Select Checking Members Trust Federal Credit Union: New Start Checking Memorial Credit Union: New Path Checking Neighborhood Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking North East Texas Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Peoples Bank: Second Chance Checking Premier America Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Prestige Community Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Red River Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Rio Bank: Fresh Start Checking Select Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Southside Bank: Next Checking Tarrant County's Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking United Heritage Credit Union: Choice Checking Unity One Credit Union: Clean Start Checking

American United Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Cyprus Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

No accounts found at state-based financial institutions. Check for national options.

Central Virginia Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Healthcare Systems Federal Credit Union: Renew Checking Member One Federal Credit Union: Smart Choice Checking

MountainCrest Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Clear Mountain Bank: StartFresh Checking West Virginia Federal Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking

Brewery Credit Union: Fresh Start Checking Dane County Credit Union: Relationship Builder Checking First National Bank and Trust Company: Renew Checking Tomahawk Community Bank: Fresh Start Checking WESTconsin Credit Union: Foundations Checking

Greater Wyoming Federal Credit Union: Freshstart Checking WyHy Federal Credit Union: Second Chance Checking WYO Central Federal Credit Union: 2nd Chance Checking Valley Credit Union: Opportunity Checking

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