Maine Banks with Second Chance Checking Accounts
A few banks in Maine specifically offer “Second Chance Checking Account” programs, which means they’ll open an account for you even if you’re on ChexSystems as long as you’ve already paid any money owed. Some banks have other names for these banking programs, such as “Opportunity Checking” or “Fresh Start Checking.”
To open a checking account through one of these special bank programs you must typically apply in person, and in many cases, the bank requires you take a class on how to balance your checking account and avoid overdrawing your account.
The best checking accounts you can open online with no credit check, no opening deposit and no Chexsystems are: List of Second Chance Banks
- Discover Bank – Open a Discover Bank savings account online instantly and earn a rate 5x the National Savings Average with a low opening deposit and access to your cash anytime. The opening deposit is $500 but you have 30 days to make a deposit at a local branch or by setting up direct deposit. Discover Bank is currently offering a $50 bonus if you also open a checking account. You have to have either a Discover Savings account or credit card to open a Discover Bank checking account.
- BBVA Compass Bank – Open an online checking account with the new ClearConnect checking account. The BBVA Compass ClearConnect Checking Account is a free checking account and offers customers the chance to open an online checking account for only $25. Enjoy no monthly service charges, free online and mobile banking, bill pay and online statements. The ClearConnect Checking Account has no ATM fees at any BBVA Compass or Allpoint® ATM. You’ll also receive a BBVA Compass Visa® Debit Card you can personalize with you favorite photo.
- Scottrade Bank – Open a checking account online with no opening deposit, no monthly or ATM fees, including most cash withdrawal fees charged by another bank. Free checks. Set up direct deposit online or make deposits at a local branch. Scottrade Bank has hundreds of branches nationwideecond Chance Checking
The banks on Checking Help’s List of Second Chance Banks in Maine do not use ChexSystems or check your credit history. Most have short, online applications and do not require an opening deposit, as many other banks require. Consequently, you can open a checking account online and get an instant account number to set up direct deposit. Or you can mail in the opening deposit or, sometimes, use a credit card or prepaid card.
Of course, you can also apply for a new checking account with a bank that expressly caters to second chance clientele. One such second chance bank is Gorham Savings Bank, which offers Maine residents in Falmouth, Portland, Scarborough and Standish its second chance “Fresh Chance Checking” account. This second chance account requires a $25 initial deposit, and entails $8.95 monthly service fees. But it features no minimum balance and no transaction limits, plus free e-Statements and direct deposit. Gorham Savings Bank also allows for some slight leeway with its “Fresh Chance Checking” accounts, only closing account the second time it is overdrawn.
Yet, if you don’t have the money available to pay off your old, overdrawn bank accounts, even banks specifically offering second chance checking might not let you open a bank account. Your ChexSystem record stays on file for five years unless the information in ChexSystem’s report is inaccurate and you file a dispute. Even if you pay off your old bank account, you still have to make sure the bank sends a letter to ChexSystems requesting the removal of any negative information.
Applying for a Bank Account with Bad Credit
When you apply for a new bank account, some banks will also check your complete credit report and score. The credit check itself isn’t usually the reason banks will deny you a checking account. Banks tend to deny you a bank account, not because you have unpaid credit cards or a bad credit score, but because you bounced checks in the past or still have a negative balance with a previous checking account.
To prevent terrorism and fraud, the law requires all banks verify your identity in the form of a “soft pull” of your credit report. This means they only access your credit report to check that your name and address match up with your social security number. This is how the bank obtains the information that makes up the random identity confirmation questions during the process of applying for a checking account. A soft pull of your credit report won’t lower your credit score and doesn’t mean the bank can see detailed information about late car payments or bills in collection.
Still, banks requiring that your checking account is enrolled in overdraft protection, in the form of a bank-issued line of credit, will require you don’t have bad credit. The bank will conduct a “hard pull” of your credit report, meaning that the credit check itself will lower your credit score by two points. Our list of recommended national and local second chance banks in Maine include banks that do not use ChexSystems or check your credit history.
Why You Need A Checking Account
Many employers today no longer bother with issuing checks and, instead, require you have direct deposit. This can be an embarrassing situation if you need a bank account but keep getting denied because of ChexSystems; naturally, no one wants to explain to their new employer that they bounced checks at their last bank and can’t get a checking account.
Also, because ChexSystems works like a consumer credit reporting agency, if you try to cash a check, even at many popular retail locations, such as Wal-Mart, they will also run your identity through a check system such as Telecheck or ChexSystems and refuse to cash your check. Without a checking account, you’re usually left with the option of paying a higher fee and cashing your check at a check cashing store or currency exchange, businesses that profit from your past mistakes. The worst part about this is that the greater the amount of your check, the higher the fee a check casher will charge, making it even more difficult to get your financial house in order.