Are you trying to open a checking account in Alabama, but can’t get approved? It’s probably because you have a negative listing in ChexSystems. Most banks in Alabama use ChexSystems to review your banking history.
Fortunately, you still have options. There are several banks that don’t use ChexSystems during the application process, and others that offer second chance checking.
Non-ChexSystems & Second Chance Banks in Alabama
Take a look at this comprehensive list of banks and credit unions in Alabama that either don’t use ChexSystems, or offer second chance checking accounts.
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Aspiration’s Spend & Save Account hybrid checking and savings account that is entirely online. There’s a $10 minimum opening deposit to get started.
With an Aspiration debit card, you get unlimited fee-free withdrawals at over 55,000 ATMs and one out-of-network ATM reimbursement per month. You can also get paid up to two days early with direct deposit.
You can earn up to 5.00% APY when you spend $1,000/month and deposits are FDIC insured.
Current is a financial technology company, not a bank. The company does not use ChexSystems or pull your credit report, and they have a lot to offer.
A Current mobile bank account includes fee-free overdraft protection of up to $200. Account holders also get access to over 40,000 fee-free Allpoint ATMs with your Current debit card, and there is no minimum balance or hidden fees.
You can also get paid up to two days early with direct deposit with a Current Premium account. Plus, Current offers up to 4.00% APY with Current Savings Pods.
Alabama Credit Union offers the On-Track Checking account, which is available if you have trouble getting approved for their Free Checking account. The monthly fee is $8. While there’s no required opening deposit, if you don’t sign up for direct deposit, you’ll be required to deposit $75 into a savings account.
You get all the same perks as ACU’s Free Checking account, including a free debit MasterCard. You can even earn rewards points each time you use your debit card. You’re also able to manage your bank account online and through the ACUmBranch app. Plus, there are branch locations across Alabama if you prefer a personal touch.
Avadian’s eChecking account is designed to help rebuild your banking and credit history. As the name implies, you don’t get access to paper checks with the e-Checking account, but instead, get a free Visa debit card.
You get unlimited debit transactions and don’t have to worry about maintaining a minimum balance. It takes just a $25 deposit to open the account. While the $7 monthly fee can be waived, it takes a hefty $2,500 account minimum to be eligible.
Avadian is located throughout Birmingham and the surrounding areas. You can also find branches in Mobile, Dothan, Geneva, Madison, and Huntsville.
You can apply for the Opportunity Draft account as Azalea City’s version of second chance checking. In addition to a free debit card, you also get unlimited check writing, online account access, and rewards program access.
There’s no minimum balance but you do have to pay a monthly fee in addition to a $5 new account fee. If you have a share account balance of less than $25, you’ll have to pay an additional $5 fee. Azalea City has two locations in Mobile and one location in Calvert, Alabama.
The Pathway account from Bank OZK is a great option if you’ve been turned down by other banks. There is an opening balance minimum of $50 but after that, you don’t have to maintain a specific amount in your account. The monthly service fee is $10 for Pathway Checking.
You do get quite a few perks, including unlimited check writing, bill pay, and online and mobile banking. Bank OZK has locations across the country. In Alabama, there’s a branch in Geneva.
Central State Bank reportedly does not use ChexSystems as part of the approval process for checking accounts, so it may be worth trying out. Their most basic account is called Central Checking.
It requires a steep $100 minimum opening deposit, but there’s no monthly fee. Plus, you get a debit card, check writing, and unlimited bill pay. If you travel, you can even get reimbursed for foreign ATM fees if you submit them within 30 days. There’s also more day-to-day services available, such as mobile check deposit and Apple Pay.
The main branch of Central State Bank is located in Calera, with additional locations in Limestone, Pelham, and Alabaster.
Try Second Slice Checking from Community Bank & Trust. This account is their second chance checking and provides you with both a debit card and free unlimited check writing. The minimum opening deposit is $100. Benefits include access to direct deposit, online banking, and a mobile banking app.
Community Bank & Trust is primarily located in Georgia but has an Alabama branch in Union Springs.
You can re-establish your checking history with Family Security’s ‘Give Me a Break’ account. When you open your account, you’ll receive a packet with resources on budgeting and financial management. You also get a free consultation with a financial counselor.
The monthly fee for this account is $10, but there’s no minimum balance required. When you deposit checks, you’ll be subject to an extended hold, unless it’s issued by the government or from your employer’s payroll.
You also can’t use shared branching with this account. On the plus side, you can apply for a traditional account after 12 months of having no non-sufficient funds or negative balances.
Family Security has locations in the following cities:
Athens, Boaz, Cullman, Daphne, Decatur, Gardendale, Guntersville, Hartselle, Hazel Green, Huntsville, Madison, Mobile, Moulton, Muscle Shoals, Priceville, Saraland, Stevenson, Thomasville
The Credit Builder account from First National Bank is designed for individuals with an e-funds score under 586. The account comes with a MasterCard debit card, plus online banking and bill pay. There’s no minimum opening deposit and you’ll also need to take semi-annual credit counseling from First National Bank.
It doesn’t accrue interest and doesn’t come with unlimited check writing. You can find Alabama branch locations in Huntsville and Athens.
At Guardian, you can get Fresh Start Checking which comes with no monthly service fee or minimum balance requirement. Extra services that come with this account include a free debit card and e-statements, online and mobile banking, plus an awards program.
There’s no overdraft protection or courtesy pay available until you upgrade to another account. Guardian can be found in the Montgomery area of Alabama.
MAX is a non-ChexSystems bank in Alabama and uses EWS instead. There’s also no credit report pull as part of the application process. The most straightforward account to apply for is the Standard Basic Checking. You need a valid ID, social security number, and email address in order to apply.
If you’re approved, the account comes with no minimum balance or per check charges. The opening deposit requirement is at least $50 and there’s a $5 monthly fee. You can get the fee waived if you are a student under the age of 26 or meet the following two conditions:
- Use your debit card 15 times a month and
- Receive one or more direct deposit or mobile deposit each month
MAX has several locations throughout the greater Montgomery area.
You may qualify for checking with Renasant Bank despite a history in ChexSystems as long as you don’t owe them any money. The most basic account option is Renasant Checking, which comes with an $8 monthly fee. To get the fee waived, simply sign up for e-statements or maintain a daily account balance of at least $500.
Renasant Checking comes with Anywhere Banking Tools, including online banking, mobile banking, check deposit, bill pay, and mobile wallets. All of Renasant’s checking accounts require a $50 minimum deposit. There are branch locations throughout Alabama.
Synovus uses your credit report instead of ChexSystems to approve your application. Consider the Free Checking account. There’s no monthly fee but you do have to deposit $100 initially to get started.
Plus, you get access to all the standard digital banking tools you’d expect from a modern checking account. There’s a mobile banking app for both iPhone and Android phones and the account also comes with unlimited online bill pay.
Alabama locations for Synovus include Jasper, Cordova, and Dora.
United Bank offers Gateway Checking for individuals who have no credit, low credit, or past banking issues. You may even be able to upgrade to a traditional account after just six months as long as you manage your account well.
One major restriction, however, is that you don’t receive a debit card with this particular account but you do get a variety of check options.
Gateway Checking costs $10 a month and you must take on an additional $4.95 a month if you want online bill pay. Online banking is included free, as is a smartphone app with mobile check deposit. United Bank is located in the following towns:
- Bay Minette
- Spanish Fort
- Frisco City
- Magnolia Springs
West Alabama Bank has Fresh Start Checking for those who have had applications denied for traditional checking accounts. You’ll need $100 to open the account, then you’ll pay a $10 monthly service fee.
Internet banking and bill pay are included with Fresh Start Checking, as are e-statements and mobile money. You can find West Alabama Bank locations in and around Tuscaloosa.
Woodforest National Bank has locations throughout Alabama and offers a Second Chance Checking account for anyone who’s had banking trouble in the past. The minimum deposit for opening the account is just $25.
You’ll need to pay a monthly maintenance fee, which costs $9.95 with direct deposit or $11.95 without it. There’s also a one-time setup fee of $9. You can find Woodforest National Bank branches throughout the state of Alabama, primarily located in Walmarts.
Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services and debit card provided by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted.
1. Out-of-network ATM withdrawal fees may apply with Chime except at MoneyPass ATMs in a 7-Eleven, or any Allpoint or Visa Plus Alliance ATM.