Have you burned bridges with your previous bank or banks? Are you finding it difficult to open a new account to help you manage your money during the holidays? Failing to manage one bank account properly could give you a bad reputation amongst most financial institutions. There is a way to open a bank account — a second chance checking account is your way back into the bank’s good graces.

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Just like your credit is monitored, so is the status of your checking and savings accounts. ChexSystems is the monitoring agency that banks report to and lists a variety of reasons why you may have had an account closed and are having a hard time opening a new one.

Financial hard times could have left you without a bank account to deposit and access money from. You may have honest intentions to get your finances in order but with things such as checking account fees on the rise, it can seem virtually impossible.

If you are having a difficult time opening a checking account — rest assured, second chance checking accounts are available from financial institutions such as Wells Fargo and Chase. Check out these second chance checking accounts available to you this holiday season.

Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking

Wells Fargo opportunity checking allows those with bad banking history to open an account for just $50. Once enrolled, a monthly service fee of $10 is applied to maintain online-only statements or $12 for paper statements. A member may have this fee waived if he or she has three or more accounts with the bank.

These include debit cards, online banking, and a savings account. He or she must also have a minimum daily balance of $2,000, 10 debit card purchases and/or payments a month, or a total of $750 or more in direct deposits.

The biggest benefit of this account is that there is a $0 cash withdrawal fee at Wells Fargo ATMs. There is, however, a $2.50 cash withdrawal fee at U.S. located non-Wells Fargo ATMs, with additional fees applied from the owner of the ATM. Cash withdrawal fees at non-Wells Fargo ATMs outside the U.S. are $5 per withdrawal plus any additional fees from the ATM.

Learn more about the Wells Fargo opportunity fees to determine if this type of account sounds appealing to you.

Chase Access Checking

Chase offers customers a Chase Access Checking account for $25 for customers that have a not-so-good reputation with banks. In order to maintain the account, an unavoidable monthly fee of $17 is charged. Over a period of time, a Chase Access Checking account is eligible for an upgrade.

Although this is possible, Chase does not provide a clear understanding of when an account is eligible for upgrade. Someone that is eligible will receive a letter or email notification that they can go into a branch and upgrade. Factors that determine the length of time it takes to switch over to a standard account include previous banking history and account status throughout the life of your Chase Access Checking account.

U.S. Bank Second Chance Checking Account

Anyone can open a bank account with U.S. Bank. To open a second chance checking account you need a minimum deposit of $25. You also need to be debt-free elsewhere. The monthly fee for U.S. Bank is $6.95 a month for online statements or $8.95 for paper statements.

This fee can be waived if you accumulate $1,000 or more in direct deposits throughout the course of a month, have a balance of $1,500 or more, or hold a line of credit such as a credit card or auto loan with U.S. Bank.

PNC Bank Foundation Checking

PNC Bank offers Foundation Checking to customers that are interested in re-establishing their reputation with banks. A minimum of $25 is required to open a Foundation Checking account.

Effective on December 9, 2013, a monthly service fee of $7 will be applied to all Foundation Checking accounts. There will also be a $2 monthly fee for paper statements. Have an open account for at least six months and you will be eligible to open another one. Visit a branch and speak with a representative to learn more details.

The most beneficial aspect of second chance banking accounts is that most offer you a chance to upgrade to a normal account. Establish your credibility with a new bank for a period of time and you can get back into good standing with ChexSystems.

The new year is right around the corner so it is a good time to establish good habits. Get a jump start on improving your credibility with banks by opening a second chance checking account.

The majority of negative information remains on your account for five years, so it’s better to build your reputation sooner rather than later. Manage a new account to help you budget your finances as you shop during this holiday season.


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  • disqus_pONGLTOzz1

    The banks destroyed millions of peoples lives, then they get bailed out after being irresponsible, the justice department after 5 years has yet to put anyone of these multimillionaires in jail…And I have to get a second chance account.

    • Brivvy

      Right on!

    • msmarie

      Yeah I remember that matter of fact I was just watching a movie on comcast internet tv in reference to the bank bailout oh wow it was sad how they did those people you stay strong and ill keep you in prayer caise im praying hard for myself

    • omshhaol

      The majority of banks had to pay back the money they were given as part of the bailout. Its not like individuals expecting to write checks with no balance and not only have it clear the bank, but to expect no penalties for spending money they do not have. Just Sayin’

  • Nick N

    Its truly unbelievable. Wheres the justice? Wheres my Bailout?

  • Gerald Morales

    At least banks provide people an option to open an account. It would be much more devastating if you couldn’t open an account at all.

    • ty

      Banks have no real money, and any money the do claim is the ridiculously high interest paid on loans or your money that they take and flip (invest). And still charge a fee for just keeping your account active or open. Bailouts, are just another way to show us American ms how naive we really are. So you mean the whoevers bail them out and the consumers who created their cash flow is still in debt. Thats crazy. Honestly, banks have no real objective but to make the middle class poorer and keep the low income to poverty level of people out of the loop of financial support, stability etc…its all a setup. You be better getting a safe!!!!!

      • quitBlamingOthers

        I’ve got a second chance account and you don’t see me bitching – it sucks but the truth is it was my fault – and even though I don’t agree with the government spending money to bailout car companies and banks – its not the banks that actually screwed up – its the people they loaned money to who then couldn’t pay the money back – so its people who screwed over the banks that caused them to get in this predicament – so its only natural they would take extra steps this time to prevent this from occurring again – i.e. second chance account instead of fully functional and feature rich account.

        • It’s always refreshing when people own up to their past mishaps for the reasons that they are stuck with less-than-average financial products. Yes, media sensationalism favors the consumer-advocating, bank-bashing side of the argument, but it’s just nice to see people who acknowledge their financial mistakes. These are the people who, I believe, possess the right attitude to improve their finances.

          • omshhaol

            Took the words right out of my head! Indeed it is refreshing to see someone own up to their own action. Was to go QuitBlamingOthers… Everyone makes mistakes. I know I have, and probably still will. But you won’t find me complaining about my bank “taking out two major transactions the same day my money was available”… Because guess what, that is the way banks are supposed to work. If a bank is presented with a debit, it is their obligation to process it in timely manner. Similarly, if you make a deposit (which is a debit to another bank/account), that other bank is also required to process it in a timely manner. If that does not bode well with your plan, go try a loan shark if you can find one…. (And take care of your knees before you lose them)…

        • Chuckle

          I agree in part but deadbeats aren’t the only people put in this kind of predicament. There are plenty of people who go bankrupt due to medical bills. They are the exception. But yes those who have overextended themselves through their own carelessness should shut it and be happy they are being given a second chance

        • Nate Ford

          No you are so wrong. It was truly the banks fault and the car companies. What does gross mean to you? To me it means the amount of money made before taxes. Dont forget we live in America where we PAY to have our freedom. Now Net, how about you explain this one? Net is the actual amount you bring home. You cannot base if someone can afford something based off money that they actually never get. The banks knew exactly what they were doing. Charging the hard working man fee after fee after fee for things like late payments, returned check fees and eventually foreclosure/repossessions. Think how many people they overextended credit too…. Now think about all the fees they racked up in fees…… Then to take a bailout and still get to keep someones home or car to go resell after they got our tax dollars. They knew exactly what they were doing. Welcome to America, where the government bails the banks out and the banks bail the government out. Now think about all that money, why not bail the man out and help him save his home, hell in my eyes it would have been cheeper.

    • Sheila

      You really do.not needa bank account at all to successfully navigate life. I have done better after closing all of my bank accounts. And closed all.of my credit.cards. Noe all of my money is exactly that…..My Money.

    • Dan Ghosoph

      LIKE MY SUPER RICH UNCLE SAID– live like your poor–save your money— and YOU WILL ALWAYS BE RICH..!!

      • Dan Ghosoph

        OR..THIS WAY…—live like your —rich— spend all your money– never save any–and— YOU WILL ALWAYS BE POOR–!!

  • james

    I had my identity stolen along with my wallet 2 years ago. I thought they had put a fraud alert and all that. Now I am trying to open a checking account and I keep getting denied. They said I owed wells Fargo 225 dollars from 2013 the same time all that stuff happens. So I just payed them the money and I am still having issues. Banks are nothing but stealers

    • Helena

      Same issue with me,some guy hacked my Wellsfargo Account and did a mobile Check Deposit and he called and text threatening messages to me about me giving him his money back,so i took the issue to the Branch Teller and they saw the messages so I paid off the overdraft just so i do not have it in my credit history and yet I been denied an account with them ever again,only reason they can give me was the check was in my name so I am not allowed to apply for any account with WellsFargo.

  • Pay Pay

    Tell them baby

    • Ladda Love

      Someone hijacked my wellsfargo account and did a $2,000 mobile check deposit and then called and text me the next day,my account got deactivated cause of the counterfeit check and the guy kept texting me to give him back his $4,000 or he will come to my house and kill everybody in it,I told him I no longer live at that address and he said he will kill whoever lives at the address.So I called the bank and told them,I don’t know who did that check deposit but they did not believe me cause it was made out to me.I told them I don’t write or accept checks,so I went to the branch to see if they can help me keep my account open cause I did not do that check deposit and showed them the text messages again they did not believe me and closed my account but I asked them is there a way I can just keep it open til my son’s s.s.i go through first,they say just go to the branch on the day of the s.s.i and they will release the funds to me and I opened a new checking account 2 months later and the dude told me they declining it cause of all that fraudulent check crap that they do not want to associate with me ever again,I was like if yall gps the log in like how computers tells you,your account been logged in from such and such place,you would see I did not deposit that check.I even contact the police about the guy but they told me since he is outside of the state line,they can’t do nothing.

      • omshhaol

        So how did the police know “he’s outside of ‘state line'”?

        • Helena

          Probably cause she didn’t know him and the police thinks its a bogus threat so they just assume stuff but not want to waste their time with crap.

  • Ugh!

    US Bank is a joke! They will manipulate your transactions so that they can slap you with NSF fees! This stupid bank is disgusting! They get away with it!

    • US Bank has stopped manipulating transaction-processing order to maximize overdraft fees. Deposits are processed first and withdrawals should be processed in the order that they occurred, while checks are processed by check number.

      Are you still noticing different post orders? If so, you should definitely bring it up with US Bank to get your fees refunded. Also, you can report this behavior to the CFPB:


      • Ugh!

        Yes! Can you believe it? The major transactions were both debit and taken out the same day my money was available! I did file a complaint with the CFPB!

    • london

      Yes they do I really dislike that bank they try to get over on someone all the time

      • Ugh!

        That’s why I now have a credit union. Waaaay better!

  • Helena

    I been looking up banks that will give you a second chance when other banks turn you down for an account but even those second chance banks turns you down even though you never even gotten an account from them.So why would banks be second chance if they deny people that never had an account with them before,banks are just trying to manipulate you to pretty much have your info in their system.