Being unbanked in Wisconsin can lead to a host of inconveniences. From missing out on direct deposits to having to carry cash with you all the time, it’s important to get yourself back in the banking system — even if you’ve made mistakes in the past. But if you have negative entries in ChexSystems, you still have options available to you.
Keep reading to find out the best banks and credit unions offering second chance checking accounts or no requirement for ChexSystems. This list is a great starting point to find financial institutions near you that cater to your banking history, no matter what it may be.
BBVA Compass Clearconnect Free Checking
BBVA Compass is a non-ChexSystems bank that offers an entirely online checking platform. Account holders are able to access their account from either a PC, tablet or smartphone. Everything is completely fee-free, meaning there aren’t any monthly fees or overdraft fees. In fact, there isn’t even a minimum account balance requirement.
When you have an account with BBVA you get access to super large ATM network. BBVA is partnered with the AllPoint ATM network, which gives its users access to over 55,000 ATMs around the world for free. To open an account with BBVA Compass only requires a $25 opening deposit.
Brewery Credit Union
Brewery Credit Union offers a second chance checking account called Fresh Start Checking. A $100 minimum deposit is required to open an account and there is a $6.50 monthly service fee associated with the account. Once an account is open, there is no minimum account balance requirement.
Fresh Start Checking account holders get free online banking, free mobile banking, free telephone banking, unlimited check writing and a free debit card.
Brewery Credit Union has locations in Milwaukee and Greenfield. To become a member, you must live or work in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee, Washington, Racine, or Kenosha County.
Chime Bank is an online checking platform that doesn’t use ChexSystems to screen new applications. There are no fees associated with Chime. This means Chime:
- Doesn’t charge overdraft fees
- Doesn’t charge monthly service fees
- Doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees
Chime also doesn’t even require a minimum account balance.
You can access your account from any internet enabled device. You get free access to over 38,000 fee-free ATMs through the MoneyPass network. Another great perk is that if you sign up for direct deposit, you can gain access to your money two days before your coworkers.
Educators Credit Union
Educators Credit Union has a second chance checking account to help people establish a positive checking history with ChexSystems. After maintaining a positive account balance for a year, you can transfer to a standard checking account.
Called Fresh Start Checking, this second chance checking account requires a $100 minimum opening balance, and a one-time activation fee of $20. After that, the monthly fee is $10. The monthly fee can be waived if the account holder has three or more Loyalty Pay Back Services.
To join ECU, you must live or work within one of the following service areas:
Educators Credit Union has locations in Kenosha, Milwaukee, Racine, Rock, Walworth, Washington, and Waukesha.
Schneider Community Credit Union
Schneider Community Credit Union offers a Fresh Start Checking account for anyone looking to re-establish their checking history with ChexSystems. You must apply in person to receive the full details of this account, and it is recommended that you call and make an appointment first before visiting a local branch.
To join Schneider Community Credit Union, applicants must live or work in Brown County or be related to an existing member. Schneider currently only has one location in Green Bay but is partnered with other credit unions, which means each member can access his or her account from nearly 5,000 branches nationwide.
Taylor Credit Union
Taylor Credit Union does not use ChexSystems to screen new applications. In fact, they don’t use Telecheck, EWS, or even run a credit report. You must be able to provide two forms of ID, and one of them must be government issued. Secondly, you can’t owe any money from a previous account with Taylor Credit Union. If these two conditions can be met, it’s likely your application will be approved.
Taylor Credit Union has locations in Abbotsford and Medford. To join, you must fulfill one of the following criteria:
- Have a family member who is already a TCU member
- Live or work within 25 miles of Medford
- Live or work within one of the following counties:
TCU offers a free checking account that does not require a minimum balance and comes with unlimited check writing, online access, and a free Visa debit card.
TCF Bank actually does use ChexSystems, but they have a positive reputation of accepting applications that other banks have denied. They likely draw the line in matters concerning fraud, or if you owe them money from a previous account. As long as neither of these is the case, they may approve of the account. To save time, it’s suggested that you call and talk to a TCF representative before proceeding.
TCF has locations in Greenfield, Milwaukee, and Elm Grove, and they offer four types of checking accounts: Premier, Free Student, 62+ and Teen. Premier Checking has a $15 monthly fee, which is waived if the account balance is $2,500 or more.
All accounts come with digital banking services, online bill pay, mobile banking, a free debit card, unlimited check writing, and free withdrawals from TCF ATMs.
Tomahawk Community Bank
Tomahawk Community Bank has a Second Chance Checking account for customers who need to repair their checking history. There is a one-time set-up fee of $10, and a $50 minimum deposit is required. Once the account is established, there is a monthly fee of $10. If you’ve maintained your account with a positive balance for 12 months, you may be able to transfer to a standard checking account with TCB.
Each account comes with online access, online bill pay, mobile banking, and free eStatements. Tomahawk currently has locations in Tomahawk and Merrill.