If you recently applied for a checking account and were denied because of a negative banking history, you’re not alone. Approximately 85% of banks in The District of Columbia use a company called ChexSystems when you apply for a new checking account. If you have experienced several overdraft checks from another bank or have been unable to pay overdraft fees, ChexSystems will flag that behavior making it next to impossible to find a bank willing to work with you.
Granted, ChexSystems is the safety net for bank institutions to weed out people who have committed fraud or identity theft, but if you get caught in the net it can be crippling. And most of us absolutely require the use of a bank checking account to manage our money, pay bills, and receive direct deposits from an employer or government agency.
Fortunately, some banks and credit unions offer so-called No ChexSystems Checking Accounts and/or Second Chance Checking Accounts to help people rebuild their credit and financial histories. Our job at checkingexpert.com is to find those institutions in The District of Columbia that can assist you.
BBVA Online Checking
Available in all states except Alaska and Hawaii. The BBVA Online Checking Account is our hands-down winner for the best checking account. Unknown to some, BBVA is owned by a multi-billion dollar international bank and has won several awards for their leading products and online services. They are a fully insured FDIC member. Features include mobile deposits, direct deposit, online bill payment, and NO monthly or annual fees. Setting up an account is almost too easy and the smartphone app tools are the best we’ve reviewed. Here are a few of the highlights:
- FREE Visa® debit card you can personalize with your favorite photo
- NO monthly service charge
- Complimentary online banking and mobile banking, bill pay and online statements
- 24/7 customer support
- NO fees at over 64,000 ATMs nationwide (includes BBVA and Allpoint® locations)
- You can apply with only a $25 opening deposit
Applying is simple. The BBVA website is simple and easy to interact with. As stated above, there is a $25 minimum deposit required to open an account and once that deposit clears, you’ll be off and running. Hands down, BBVA is one of the most friendly banks for those who need a second chance at a checking account. The entire process from start to finish takes about 3 minutes.
For anyone interested, I signed up for a BBVA Bank checking account. I have been using the new checking account, debit card, online website, direct deposit, and customer service for over a month now. I have to say I am genuinely impressed with everything they have done with me and my account.
So far it seems like the ideal bank.
B. Lewis, BBVA Customer
Get a BBVA account now!
Best Second Chance Banks in The District of Columbia
Residents in virtually every state have access to local, regional, or national financial institutions that offer “Second Chance Checking Programs” or what some banks call Fresh Start Checking, Opportunity Checking or New Start Checking. Most banks or credit unions offering second chance checking use ChexSystems or EWS, but are willing to forgive your previous banking mistakes and give you a second chance.
A second chance checking account offers the security of a bank account while letting a consumer rebuild his or her banking history. After a year or two, an account holder may be able to upgrade to a regular checking account. Here’s the list of banks in The District of Columbia offering these services:
|BBVA (Our Top Pick)||Online Checking|
|CommonWealth One Federal Credit Union||Second Chance Checking|
|PNC Bank||Foundation Checking|
|Premier Bank||StartFresh Checking|
|Wells Fargo||Opportunity Package|
Did we leave your financial institution off this list? Has there been a change in any of the listings? Please let us know.