South Carolina’s “unbanked” population is actually getting smaller, which is a positive trend when considering that having access to a bank gives you better options for managing your money. For people who may have previously been denied a checking account because of negative history in ChexSystems, there are more options than ever before to work around your past.

There are two ways South Carolina banks and credit unions appeal to those with ChexSystems records.

First, some banks in South Carolina don’t use ChexSystems as part of the application process. Alternatively, they may access your ChexSystems records but still offer you a second chance banking account.

Non-ChexSystems & Second Chance Banks in South Carolina

Wondering what banks and credit unions in South Carolina offer these perks? We’ve got the comprehensive list below.


Our Top Pick
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on Chime's secure website

With Chime, bad banking history is not an issue. They offer an award-winning financial app, a debit card, and a credit-builder Visa credit card, all with no credit check.

The Chime Spending Account is 100% free and has no monthly fees:

  • no overdraft fees
  • no monthly maintenance fees
  • no foreign transaction fees
  • no minimum balance fees

They’ll even spot you up to $200 on debit card purchases with no overdraft fees.

You can also start building your credit with the Chime Credit Builder Visa Credit Card. It’s a secured credit card with no annual fees, no credit checks, and no interest charges.

Chime has over 60,000 fee-free MoneyPass® and Visa® Plus Alliance ATMs. Plus, you can get your paycheck up to 2 days earlier with direct deposit. You can also deposit cash for free at over 8,500 Walgreens.

You can see why Chime is our #1 choice.

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Our Second Pick
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on Current's secure website

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 banking account includes fee-free overdraft protection of up to $100. You 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.

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Our Third Pick
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on Sable's secure website

Sable allows you to open a bank account with a debit card and secured credit card in just 5 minutes.

There are no credit checks, no fees, and no minimum deposit required. You can also get an unsecured credit card in about 4 months after using your secured card. That’s 3x faster than what traditional banks offer.

The Sable credit card offers 2% cashback on your favorite brands.

To open a Sable account, you don’t need a social security number or U.S. credit history. You can also send money to 55+ countries and get multilingual customer support.

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Caro — Smart Financial Solutions

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on Caro's secure website

Previously named Carolina Collegiate Federal, Caro offers a second chance checking account for account holders that need to repair their checking history. Called Rebound Checking, it requires a one time deposit of $25, but does not require a minimum balance thereafter. Instead, it does require direct deposit and has a monthly fee of $15.

Transferring to a standard checking account is possible after Rebound Checking has been kept in good standing for a predetermined amount of time. Caro has two locations in Columbia and one in Spartanburg.

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Carolina Trust Credit Union

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on Carolina Trust's secure website

Carolina Trust offers a second chance checking account called Encore Checking. There is a monthly service fee, but if you can keep a positive account for 12 months, you can then transfer to a free checking account. Moreover, after only six months, you can replace your ATM card with a Visa debit card.

Carolina Trust has seven locations in the following areas: Conway, Johnsonville, Surfside Beach, Lake City, Little River, and two in Myrtle Beach.

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First Reliance Bank

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on First Reliance's secure website

First Reliance offers banking accounts to everyone, regardless of their credit report, ChexSystems, Telecheck, or EWS file. To open a Simple Checking account requires an initial deposit of $25, but it doesn’t have a monthly fee if you sign up for eStatements.

If you don’t select eStatements, then the fee is $5. It comes with free online and mobile banking, free automatic bill pay, as well as a free debit card. All account holders also get free access to thousands of worldwide ATMs.

First Reliance Bank has locations in Florence, Lexington, West Columbia, Mount Pleasant, Charleston, Loris, Summerville, Winston-Salem, Greenville, Taylors, Simpsonville, Myrtle Beach, and Mooresville.

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Apply Now

on FSNB's secure website

Instead of looking into whether an applicant has a checkered ChexSystems history, FSNB does a credit report check instead. It offers four types of checking accounts: 50+ Checking, Career Checking, Advanced Checking, Interest NOW Checking, and Basic Checking.

Basic checking requires a $5.00 minimum deposit, and costs $5.50 a month if the balance falls below $75. If the account has a minimum of $500 in it, it will accrue interest. E-statements are free, but if you prefer a paper statement, it’s $3.00 per statement cycle. FSNB only has one branch location in Parris Island but offers free online, mobile, and text banking.

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Founders Federal Credit Union

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on Founders FCU's secure website

Founders Federal uses credit reports in lieu of referring to ChexSystems, Telecheck, or EWS records. Additionally, each applicant must have a government issued ID. Each account holder is given a free Visa debit card, and there are no monthly fees. Founders has 18 locations throughout northern South Carolina.

To become a member, applicants must live, work, study, volunteer, or worship in Chester County, Chesterfield County, Laurens County, Town of Wellford, Town of Duncan, or Union County. Eligibility can also be granted to applicants with family members who are already members, or if the applicant works, volunteers or retired at participating companies.

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HopeSouth Federal Credit Union

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on HopeSouth's secure website

HopeSouth offers a second chance checking account to people who have issues with their checking history. Called Fresh Start, HopeSouth asks that anyone who is interested in this account contact a representative to discuss details concerning qualifications and monthly fees.

Though there’s a monthly fee, once the account has maintained a positive history for a set period of time, HopeSouth encourages all account holders to apply for a standard checking account. Their basic checking account is free and does not require an account balance minimum. They have one branch location, which is at 807 West Greenwood Street in Abbeville.

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Vital Federal Credit Union

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on Vital's secure website

Vital Federal offers a second chance checking account called Fresh Start. There is a monthly service charge of $15, but there is no minimum balance requirement.

Direct deposit is required, but transferring to a basic checking account is possible if the Fresh Start is kept in good standing for a predetermined amount of time. Each account is federally insured up to at least $250,000.

Vital has locations in Spartanburg and Duncan, South Carolina. To become a member, applicants must live, work, worship, or attend school in Spartanburg County, or have a family member who is already a member.

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Woodforest National Bank

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on Woodforest's secure website

After an initial deposit of $25, Woodforest National Bank offers a second chance checking account. There is a one-time account set up fee of $9 and a monthly fee of $11.95 if you don’t sign up for direct deposit. If you do, the fee drops down to $9.95. An account with Woodforest comes with free online and mobile banking. Account holders can also sign up for account updates to prevent overdrafts from occurring.

Woodforest currently has 20 locations throughout South Carolina, as well as numerous others throughout the United States.

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