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First National Bank of America 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 has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

First National Bank of America’s checking account options

Personal Checking

A basic checking account that doesn’t earn you any interest.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $4 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $30

Unfortunately, there’s not much that stands out about the Personal Checking account. You get free online and mobile banking, an ATM or debit card and unlimited check-writing capabilities. If you’re looking for a no-frills checking account, it could be a good choice to cover your basic needs.

To waive the monthly maintenance fee, you’ll need to maintain at least a $350 average daily balance or a $100 minimum daily balance.

How to get First National Bank of America’s Personal Checking account

You’ll need to visit a branch to open an account. You’ll be asked to provide the bank with your address, Social Security number and state-issued ID. You can call customer service at 800-968-3626 to find out more.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

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Simple Checking

You’ll need a higher minimum balance than the Personal Checking account to waive the monthly fee.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $6 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $30

There isn’t much of a difference between the Personal Checking and Simple Checking accounts, except that you can earn a little bit of interest with this one.

The monthly maintenance fee is slightly higher at $6, but you can get that waived if you maintain a $500 minimum daily balance or a $750 average daily balance each month.

Like with the Personal Checking account, you get free online and mobile banking and an ATM or debit card. Keep in mind that the rate for the Simple Checking account isn’t advertised on the bank’s website, so it’s best to call to find out the current one.

How to get First National Bank of America’s Simple Checking account

To open a Simple Checking account, visit a branch. The bank could require information such as your address and Social Security number. You can call customer service at 800-968-3626 for more details.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

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How First National Bank of America’s checking accounts compare

Many of First Bank of America’s competitors offer no monthly fees and ATM refunds. Plus, First National Bank of America doesn’t advertise its Simple Checking account APY for you to compare it to our list of the best checking accounts.

You’re probably better off looking elsewhere.

First National Bank of America’s savings account option

Statement Savings

We’re not impressed with the APY, but you do get ATM access.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.25% $200
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $200
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $2 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

With the only savings account offered at First Bank of America, you get ATM access, but the APY rate is still pretty low.

Account holders do get online and mobile banking access, as well as itemized monthly statements. You’re allowed up to six certain withdrawals a month because of the Federal Reserve’s Regulation D, and you’ll need to pay a $5 excess transaction fee each time you go over.

To waive the monthly maintenance fee, you’ll have to maintain an average balance of $199.

How to get First National Bank of America’s Statement Savings account

Visit a branch to open a Statement Savings account. Customer service may ask you for personal information such as your address and state-issued ID. To find out more, call customer service at 800-968-3626.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

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How First National Bank of America’s savings account compares

It’s great that First National Bank of America doesn’t charge you any ATM fees, but its APY is less than impressive. Other institutions offer higher rates than what First National Bank of America offers, alongside no monthly maintenance fees — some of them even provide ATM access. You could be better off going with one of the competitors found on our list of the best online savings accounts.

First National Bank of America’s CD rates

Certificate of Deposit

These rates aren’t half-bad.
TermAPY
1 to 5 months0.90%
6 to 11 months1.25%
12 to 23 months1.55%
24 to 35 months1.75%
36 to 47 months1.80%
48 to 59 months1.85%
60 months1.90%
84 months2.00%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on the term:
    • Less than 12 months: 90 days’ interest
    • 12 to 23 months: 180 days’ interest
    • 24 to 47 months: 360 days’ interest
    • 48 to 84 months: 540 days’ interest

These CDs offer a guaranteed rate of return — assuming you leave all funds in the account until maturity — so it’s best for those who want to ensure a steady return on their investment. It appears as though First National Bank of America is trying to be more competitive, as this is one of the few deposit accounts you can open online.

Any interest you earn is compounded and credited quarterly to your account. When your account matures, you have a 10-day grace period in which you can make changes such as an additional deposit or withdrawal, as well as renew for another term. Otherwise, the CD will automatically be renewed.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

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Flex CD

It’s a lower rate than the fixed-rate CD, but you may be able to get a rate increase.
TermAPY
3 years1.75%
4 years1.80%
5 years1.85%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on the term:
    • 3 years: 360 days’ interest
    • 4 or 5 years: 540 days’ interest

The Flex CD offers you the opportunity to increase your rate once during your CD term. If you see that the rate for your current term has increased, you can request a rate increase for the remainder of your CD. Like with the fixed-rate CD, interest is compounded and credited to your account quarterly.

Upon maturity, your CD will be renewed automatically unless you make changes — such as additional deposits and withdrawals or renewing for another term — during the 10-day grace period.

How to get First National Bank of America’s CDs

To open either type of CD, go to First National Bank of America’s website and fill out an online form. You’ll need to agree to the online disclosures and pick the CD term you want. You can then complete the rest of the application by entering your personal details such as your name, employment information and Social Security number before funding the account.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

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How First National Bank of America’s CD rates compare

We’re fairly impressed with the rates we’re seeing, as some of them are pretty much equal to online competitors. Other places have lower opening minimum deposit requirements, but not by much.

Considering you can open an account online — much like the banks on our list of the best CD rates — these CDs are worth a look.

First National Bank of America’s money market account option

HomeTowne Money Market Checking

It’s a pretty unique product in that it’s a savings account that acts like a checking account.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.65%Less than $1,000
0.75%$1,000
0.95%$20,000
1.10%$100,000
1.35%$250,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

Although this is a money market account, it operates like a regular checking account in that you get ATM and check-writing capabilities, plus you can get unlimited transactions. That means you’re not limited to six withdrawals a month like with other savings accounts, and you’re not subject to a excess transaction fee. You also get a free ATM or debit card, bill pay and online banking.

First National Bank of America also guarantees that it’ll have the best money market rate in the area. If you can find a better money market rate from a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.-insured bank in East Lansing, Grand Rapids or Traverse City, Mich., the bank will beat or match it. But promo rates that are offered for less than six months or rates that require loan or additional deposit requirements are excluded.

You’ll be able to waive the monthly maintenance fee if you maintain a $1,000 minimum daily balance.

How to get First National Bank of America’s HomeTowne Money Market Checking account

To open the HomeTowne Money Market Checking account, you’ll need to head to a branch. You may be asked to provide your Social Security number and state-issued ID. If you choose, call customer service at 800-968-3626 to find out more.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How First National Bank of America’s money market account compares

It’s pretty neat that this money market account gives you unlimited withdrawals, ATM access and check-writing capabilities, but the rates aren’t stellar.

Although the highest tier does offer a fairly competitive rate, it requires a much higher minimum deposit amount compared to the ones on our list of the best money market rates. If you don’t have that much cash lying around, you may be better off looking elsewhere.

First National Bank of America’s IRA account options

IRA CD rates

IRA CD

These rates are on par with what’s currently being offered by competitors.
TermAPY
12 to 23 months1.55%
24 to 35 months1.75%
36 to 47 months1.80%
48 to 59 months1.85%
60 months3.35%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $,1000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on the term:
    • Less than 12 months: 90 days’ interest
    • 12 to 23 months: 180 days’ interest
    • 24 to 47 months: 360 days’ interest
    • 48 to 72 months: 540 days’ interest

The IRA CDs are a fixed-rate account that could be best for those who are interested in a more conservative investment vehicle. Interest is compounded and credited quarterly, but the APY assumes you’ll keep all funds earned in the account until it matures. When it does, your account will automatically be renewed unless you make changes within the 10-day grace period. This can include making additional deposits or a withdrawal, as well as renewing for another term.

How to get First National Bank of America’s IRA CDs

You need to open an IRA CD account in person. It’s a good idea to call customer service at 800-968-3626 to confirm, but you’ll most likely need to bring your Social Security card and state-issued ID.

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on First National Bank Of America’s secure website

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How First National Bank of America’s IRA CD rates compare

We’re happy to say that these are on par with some of the best offerings on our list of the best IRA CD rates. Unfortunately, it won’t be as convenient to open an account if you don’t live near one of its branches, so an online option may be a better choice for you.

Overall review of First National Bank of America’s banking products

Most of the rates that First National Bank of America offers are quite low compared to other online banks and credit unions. But where the bank shines is its CD and IRA CD accounts. They offer pretty competitive rates and have a wide range of terms from which to choose.

For now, you can only open the CD account online, so you may have no choice but to go elsewhere if you’re not close to one of the bank’s branches.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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Earning Interest, Eliminating Fees, Reviews

Schwab High Yield Investor Checking Account Review

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

The Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account offered by Charles Schwab Bank isn’t your average checking account. In fact, it’s a checking account designed exclusively for investors. If you want the convenience of having your idle cash and invested assets all under one roof, this product could be for you.

What is the Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account?

The Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account is an interest-bearing checking account that is linked to your Schwab One brokerage account, making it easy and convenient to invest otherwise idle cash.

This product comes with attractive features that many traditional checking accounts offer — including no minimum balance requirements, no monthly service or ATM fees and a variable interest rate — as well as the unique feature of easy transfers to and from your linked brokerage account. When you open your High Yield Investor Checking account, a Schwab One brokerage account will also be opened for you. The accounts will have separate account numbers, but both can be viewed online with a single login.

Here’s what you can expect to receive upon opening and funding a Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account:

  • 0.03% APY
  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insurance
  • Free transfers to and from your linked brokerage account
  • Schwab Bank Visa Platinum debit card
  • Complimentary checks, deposit slips, mailing labels and pre-addressed, postage-paid envelopes

How is the High Yield Investor Checking account different from other checking accounts?

In most cases, checking accounts do not require you to open another linked account in which funds will flow to and from. The Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account, however, is only available as a linked account with the Schwab One brokerage account.

If you’re in the market for just a checking account to stash the cash you use for your everyday spending needs, opening a brokerage account alongside your checking account can seem like an unnecessary step. The brokerage account’s main function is to trade stocks, options, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs and other financial products.

However, it is worth noting that the Schwab One brokerage account does not have any minimum balance requirements or requirements to fund the account, making it relatively accessible and easy to open.

Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account fees and minimums

The Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account features the following fees and minimums:

Monthly service fee

$0

Minimum balance fee

$0

ATM fee

Unlimited ATM fee rebates

Foreign transaction fee

$0

It’s worth noting that while the Schwab One brokerage account also does not have any minimum balance requirements or monthly maintenance fees, other account fees may apply. For example, trades placed through a broker come with a service charge of $25.

Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account pros and cons

Pros

  • Easy to invest idle cash: By having your checking account linked to your brokerage account, it makes it much more convenient to invest any idle cash.
  • Minimal fees: Schwab’s High Yield Investor Checking account boasts minimal fees compared to other checking accounts, specifically ones offered by other big banks.
  • Unlimited ATM rebates: This is a valuable feature and could save you a significant amount of money over time.

Cons

  • Low interest rate: The account’s 0.03% APY pales in comparison to other high-yield checking accounts, some of which have rates that climb to over 5.00% APY.
  • Unnecessary complexity: The requirement of having a Schwab One brokerage account could be viewed as an added hoop to jump through for those simply looking for a traditional checking account product.
  • Non-sufficient funds fee: Watch out for the account’s non-sufficient funds (NSF) fee of $25, up to $100 maximum per day, if you don’t have enough money in your account to cover a transaction. Still, this is less than the average NSF fee of $30.50.

Who is the Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account good for?

If you’re just looking for a liquid checking account that you can use for your everyday spending needs, the Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account is likely not for you. There are other checking accounts offering much higher interest rates without requiring you to link a brokerage account in order to open the account. Additionally, if your strategy is to let your extra cash sit in the Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account without initiating regular transfers to your Schwab One brokerage account, your money would grow at a considerably faster rate in a high-yield savings account, money market account or CD.

If you already are an investor and have a Schwab One brokerage account — or are looking for a checking account that provides easy and instant transfers to and from your brokerage account — the Schwab High Yield Investor Checking account is certainly worth exploring. It has many of the same, standout features that the best traditional checking accounts have, while also being one of the few checking accounts out there that provides instant access to your invested assets.

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Best of, Reviews

The Top 7 Second Chance Bank Accounts

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

Some banks don’t like giving second chances to customers who have less-than-stellar financial histories, especially since it could expose them to expensive risks. A record of bounced checks or debit card overdrafts could easily lock you out of the conveniences of modern banking.

Fortunately, banks also like making money, and some offer special “second chance” accounts that minimize their risk while allowing consumers to stay in the banking system. A second chance bank account gives customers with troubled records a fresh opportunity to demonstrate they can bank responsibly.

When it comes to a second chance account, fees are an unfortunate reality. But some accounts offer customers a better deal than others, and we’ve researched our database to find the second chance accounts with the most reasonable fee structures, while also factoring in whether they provide online and mobile banking, and how accessible accounts are throughout the country.

Account Name

Monthly Fee

Minimum to open

Availability

Chime$0$0Nationwide
Peoples Bank Cash Solutions Second Chance Checking$4.95 $30Nationwide
GoBank Checking Account$8.95, can be waived if you meet requirements$20Nationwide
Radius Essential Checking$0$10Nationwide
Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking and Savings Accounts$10, can be waived if you meet requirements$25Nationwide
BBVA Easy Checking$13.95$25Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas
Woodforest National Bank Second Chance Checking$9.95 monthly maintenance fee if you use a direct deposit; $11.95 without a direct deposit$25Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia

Second chance account basics

With a second chance bank account, customers shut out of traditional bank accounts get the opportunity to win their way back into a bank’s good graces. Similar to credit bureaus, financial services company ChexSystems maintains records of consumers’ banking histories. Bounced checks, overdrawn accounts or instances of fraud can all end up on your ChexSystems record; if you accumulate enough black marks on ChexSystems, banks could deny your application to open a new account.

Because second chance accounts are meant for customers who have demonstrated bad banking behavior, some lack features of traditional accounts, such as overdraft protection. In the eyes of the bank, you represent too much of a risk for them to extend you such courtesies.

Nobody likes paying fees, and we generally advise consumers to avoid needless banking fees due to the many fee-free banking options available. But fees are the price you pay for access to banking when you have a poor record. Plus, the second chance accounts listed below give you access to online and mobile banking, which is always a plus.

The 7 best second chance bank accounts

1. Chime

Chime

Fintech app developer Chime is not a bank, however their online checking account product is open to everybody no matter how bad your record is with ChexSystems. Chime does not check on applicants with ChexSystems, plus they offer lots of non-traditional features to help you get your financial life back on track. Best of all is the fact that they charge no fees at all, and require neither a minimum opening deposit or a minimum balance.

Chime account features:

  • No opening balance or minimum balance requirements.
  • Set up direct deposit for your paycheck, and the funds from each pay period will be deposited as soon as the transaction is initiated, giving you access to your pay up to two days earlier than conventional checking accounts.
  • Automatic savings features to help you save in your connected Chime Savings account.
  • The app sends you daily bank account balance notifications, and sends transaction alerts every time you use your debit card.
  • You can disable the debit card from the app.

Fees to watch out for:

  • Chime’s service is almost entirely fee-free: No monthly charges, no ACH transfer fees, no foreign transaction fees, and no ATM fees if you withdraw funds from MoneyPass ATMs.
  • If you make an ATM withdrawal outside of these networks, there is a $2.50 fee.
  • Overdrafts are not permitted, so there is never an overdraft fee.

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Member FDIC

2. Peoples Bank Cash Solutions Second Chance Checking

Peoples Bank Cash Solutions

This Texas-based bank offers a second chance bank account that is available nationwide, and so long as you don’t have a record of bank or checking fraud on your record, you should be approved for this account. You’ll need to deposit at least $30 before the bank activates your account and provides you with checks and a debit card.

Fees to watch out for:

  • $4.95 monthly maintenance fee
  • $27.50 overdraft fee
  • $27.50 nonsufficient funds fee
  • $3.95 printed statement fee (which can be avoided with electronic statements)
  • $2.00 ATM withdrawal fee at machines not owned by Peoples Bank
  • $25 stop payment fee
  • $20 account closure fee (if within 90 days of opening account)

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on Peoples Bank Cash Solutions’s secure website

Member FDIC

3. GoBank Checking Account

GoBank

A brand of Green Dot Bank, GoBank does not run a background check for new checking customers on ChexSystems, and it does not require a credit check. The account comes with a free debit card and fee-free access to a large network of ATMs, although be warned that out-of-network ATM withdrawals carry a $3 fee, on top of whatever the ATM operator charges. GoBank’s $8.95 monthly fee is high. However, this fee can be avoided with a monthly $500 direct deposit.

Account Features:

  • A free debit card
  • 24/7 mobile and online banking
  • Simple budgeting and spending tracker tools
  • Mobile check deposits

Fees to watch out for:

  • $2.95 sign-up fee, waived if you set up your account online
  • $8.95 monthly maintenance fee, waived each month your account receives payroll or government direct deposits totaling at least $500
  • Fees of up to $4.95 charged by retailers to make cash deposits
  • $3 out-of-network ATM withdrawal fee
  • $5 card replacement fee
  • Foreign transaction fee is 3% total transaction

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on GoBank’s secure website

Member FDIC

4. Radius Essential Checking

Radius Bank

Products from online bank Radius are available to customers nationwide, and accessibility is a strong point in its favor. This second chance bank account only requires customers to deposit $10 to open an Essential Checking account, which is lower than some other accounts on this list.

Account Features:

  • A free debit card
  • 24/7 mobile and online banking
  • Access to Radius’s budgeting and personal finance tracking apps
  • Eligibility to upgrade to Radius’s Reward Checking account after 12 months of positive banking history

Fees to watch out for:

  • $9 monthly maintenance fee
  • $25 per item non-sufficient funds fee (waived on all overdraft items $5 or less)
  • $5 daily overdraft fee

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on Radius Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

5. Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking and Savings Accounts

Wells Fargo Bank

Wells Fargo’s Opportunity Checking and Savings Accounts are tailor-made for folks with a lackluster credit or banking history. With a $25 opening deposit, you’ll get access to a second chance bank account that offers most of the bells and whistles of a traditional bank account. The account does come with a monthly fee, although it’s possible to waive it if you meet a few requirements (see below).

Account features:

  • $25 minimum deposit to open
  • Free transfers are available between Opportunity Checking and Savings accounts
  • You can choose to opt into overdraft protection
  • Free access to bill pay
  • “My Spending Report with Budget Watch” is available if you want to pay extra attention to where your money is going
  • Free debit card with access to more than 13,000 Wells Fargo ATMs throughout the country

Fees to watch out for:

  • $10 monthly service fee, waived if any of the following are true:
    • You make 10 posted debit card purchases or payments
    • You keep a minimum daily balance of $1,500 in the account
    • You receive $500 total in direct deposits each statement cycle
  • $35 overdraft and returned item fee
  • $12.50 overdraft protection transfer fee
  • $15 fee for excess activity (exceeding withdrawals from your savings account)
  • 3% foreign transaction fee with your debit card
  • $5 for money orders
  • $31 for stop payments

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on Wells Fargo Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

6. BBVA Easy Checking

BBVA
BBVA’s Easy Checking product is available as a second chance account to customers in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas. There is a $13.95 monthly service charge to maintain the account. You can request that BBVA upgrade your account one of their regular checking products after 12 months — and ditch that high monthly fee — so long as the Easy Checking account remains active and has a positive balance.

BBVA Easy Checking features::

  • Online and mobile banking, customized alerts, and a free debit card (with option to personalize)
  • $25 minimum deposit to open
  • Free BBVA ATM withdrawals

Fees to watch out for:

  • $3 fee for out-of-network ATM withdrawals
  • $38 insufficient funds fee ($32 in California)
  • $15 deposit item returned fee
  • $32 stop payment fee made over the phone or in person ($30 in California); $25 if made online

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on BBVA’s secure website

Member FDIC

7. Woodforest National Bank Second Chance Checking

Woodforest National Bank

This regional bank has a checking account aptly named Second Chance Checking, to help people rejected by other banks access — provided they live in one of the 17 states where a physical branch exists and can meet the $25 minimum opening deposit requirement. Those states are: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

Fees to watch out for:

  • $9.95 monthly maintenance fee if you use a direct deposit
  • $9 one-time account set-up fee
  • $2.50 ATM withdrawal fee when used at a non-Woodforest network ATM
  • $15 debit card set-up fee
  • $32 overdraft fee (for each charge)

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Woodforest National Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Alternatives to a second chance bank account

Get a prepaid debit card

Tired of the traditional banking experience? You could opt for a prepaid debit card instead. With a prepaid card, you can load money onto it and spend at merchants that accept major credit and debit cards. But if you try and spend more money than what’s on the card, the transaction is declined — although this prevents you from accruing any overdraft or insufficient funds fees. This is useful if you feel you may still have trouble managing your spending and need an extra layer of security to prevent you from getting into trouble.

Some prepaid cards offer extra perks like advance direct deposit and free ATMs so long as you stay in their network.

Open a secured credit card

You may also have better luck applying for a secured credit card if your credit score is in good enough shape. Usually, this requires depositing cash with the lender, who then gives you the credit card for the same amount. Each month that you make on-time payments, the bank will report that good behavior to the credit bureaus, helping you boost your credit score. At the end of the payment period (generally 12 months, though it varies by banks), you’ll get the full deposit back.

Secured cards can come with high interest rates and many don’t feature the enticing rewards other high-end cards do, but they get the basic job done for consumers who don’t need a card with a high credit limit.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.