Open a Bank Account Online with No Deposit and Bad Credit

Banking

In our digital world, having a bank account is no longer optional. Instead, it’s quickly becoming a necessity, especially as many stores are beginning to refuse to accept cash from consumers.

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Opening a bank account isn’t a big deal for most people, but this can be a different story for consumers with a negative banking history. For example, if you’ve had too many bounced checks, unpaid fees, negative balances, overdrafts, or closed accounts in the past, you could be denied a bank account.

If you find yourself in this situation, don’t despair. Some banks and credit unions will be willing to work with you, but you may have to be more strategic about finding them.

12 Banks Accounts That Don’t Require a Deposit

In the past, most consumers opened checking accounts at banks or credit unions with brick-and-mortar locations. But this is no longer a requirement. In fact, there are many benefits to choosing an online-only bank.

Most online accounts come with little to no minimum balance requirements or monthly maintenance fees. Of course, you will sacrifice a certain amount of convenience, but it may be worth the trade-off to find a bank account with better terms.

Listed below are ten bank accounts for bad credit that don’t require a minimum deposit. These banks were chosen because they offer better options for the average consumer.

1. Chime

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  • No credit check
  • No minimum opening deposit or monthly service fee
  • Over 60,000+ fee-free1 ATMs
  • Get paid up to 2 days early with direct deposit2

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2. Upgrade

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  • $0 annual fees, $0 ATM fees, $0 overdraft fees, and $0 transfer fees
  • Visa debit card, iOS and Android mobile app
  • Up to 2% cash back on debit card purchases

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3. Chase

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  • No credit check or ChexSystems
  • $100 bonus after 10 purchases in 60 days
  • Over 16,000+ fee-free ATMs
  • $4.95 monthly service fee

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4. Current

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  • No credit check
  • No minimum opening deposit or maintenance fees
  • Get paid up to 2 days faster
  • Overdraft up to $200 without any overdraft fees

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5. Axos Bank

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  • No credit check
  • $100 Sign-up Bonus
  • No monthly maintenance fees or overdraft fees
  • Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements

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1. Chime

Chime offers second chance checking and savings accounts with no monthly service fee and no minimum balance requirement. There are no physical locations, but consumers do have access to the bank’s network of 60,000 ATMs across the country.

Chime makes it easy to deposit and transfer your money with its free mobile app. You’ll get access to automatic deposits, online transfers, mobile banking, and ATM withdrawals. This free checking account also comes with online bill pay, direct deposit, and a Visa® debit card. Check out our full review of Chime.

2. Upgrade

The Upgrade Rewards Checking account has no monthly fees, no ATM fees, and no transfer fees. Plus, you’ll get up to 2% cash back on everyday debit card purchases. If you use an out-of-network ATM, Upgrade will give you a rebate on up to five ATM fees per month if you meet certain conditions.

Upgrade has a bank partnership with Cross River Bank, Member FDIC. Your funds are FDIC-insured up to $250,000. You can also get up to 20% lower rate on Upgrade loans and credit cards.

3. Chase

Chase is one of the most popular banks in the U.S. And now, they offer an account called Chase Secure Banking with no credit check, no ChexSystems, and no overdraft fees.

Account holders also get access to over 16,000 fee-free ATMs, free online bill pay, and free money orders and cashier’s checks. With 4,700 locations across the country, this is an excellent option for anyone who prefers having access to physical branches.

Opening a Chase Secure Banking account comes with a $100 cash bonus when you use the card for 10 purchases within 60 days. Account approval is immediate and you’ll receive your debit card within days. There is a small monthly service fee of $4.95; however, there is no minimum opening deposit to get started.

4. Current

Current is one of the fastest-growing mobile banking solutions in the U.S., with over one million members. However, Current is a financial technology company, not a bank. Most importantly, Current does not use ChexSystems or pull your credit report.

Some features of the Current mobile banking account include fee-free overdraft protection of up to $100, 40,000 fee-free Allpoint ATMs, and no minimum balance or hidden fees.

You can also get paid up to two days early with direct deposit and earn up to 15x points, and get cashback.

5. Axos Bank

The Rewards Checking account from Axos Bank comes with plenty of great features. You can earn up to 1.25% APY and enjoy unlimited ATM fee reimbursements in the US.

This checking account has no monthly maintenance fees, no overdraft fees, and no NSF fees. There’s also no minimum monthly balance requirements.

Chime app

Do most banks require a credit check for bank accounts?

Yes, and no. Most banks won’t run a credit check with one of the three major credit bureaus, but they will run a bank-specific credit check. Most of them are not interested in your credit score or credit card payment history. They’re more interested in seeing what your history is of working with other financial institutions.

Most banks check your ChexSystems report, which highlights your banking history. This covers things like writing bad checks, negative account balances, and unpaid account fees.

Just like a credit report, you are entitled to receive one free copy of your ChexSystems report each year. And if a bank or credit union turns you down based on information found in your report, you have a right to access that information.

It’s a good idea to check your ChexSystems report to look for any inaccuracies periodically. In addition, if you’re looking to open a checking account, you may want to check to see if you’re in their database. If you find negative information on your report, you can dispute it or wait five years until it is permanently deleted. However, either way, you may need to explore other options for now.

Fortunately, there are some banks that don’t use ChexSystems, so you can still get an account with these banks even if you have a bad banking history.

How to Choose the Right Bank Account

Many people choose where they bank based on convenience. For example, if a particular bank has a branch located right down the street from you, you may choose to bank there. But that bank may or may not be in line with your financial goals.

If you were looking to take out a car loan, you wouldn’t sign up with the first lender you saw. So you shouldn’t apply that same decision-making process to where you bank.

You should always spend some time shopping around for the right bank. Here are a few factors you should consider:

  • Fees: Banks make quite a bit of money by charging customers fees. Some of the most common fees to watch out for are minimum balance fees, overdraft fees, ATM fees, and international transaction fees. If a bank charges fees, that doesn’t mean you should immediately rule out banking there. But you do want to know what fees a bank is charging because there are usually ways you can get around paying these fees.
  • Interest rates: You should know what kind of interest rate your bank is paying you to do business with them. Keep in mind that these will change periodically depending on whether the Federal Reserve raises or lowers interest rates.
  • Other benefits: What kind of benefits will you receive from choosing a particular bank? Is visiting a brick-and-mortar location important to you, or are you comfortable with an online-only bank? Do they have thousands of conveniently located ATMs? Knowing these perks will help you make an educated decision.

Summary

If you have bad credit or a tarnished banking history, it doesn’t mean you can’t open a bank account. Many online banks will be willing to work with you.

Before making a final selection, know what kind of products and services you’re looking for in a bank or credit union, and do your homework. This will help you make a decision that’s in line with your financial goals and priorities.

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.

2. Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing of the submission of the payment file from the payer. Chime generally make these funds available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to 2 days earlier than the scheduled payment date.

Jamie Johnson
Meet the author

Jamie Johnson is a freelance writer who has been featured in publications like InvestorPlace and GOBankingRates. She writes about various personal finance topics including student loans, credit cards, investing, building credit, and more.