Second Chance Banks In Houston Texas

Did you know that 8.4 million households in the United States are unbanked? Discovering this many unbanked households is according to a 2017 survey completed by the FDIC. Being unbanked means that you do not use banks in any capacity and tend to pay for things with cash, money orders, or prepaid VISA debit cards. The reason why many people are unbanked could be due to a few reasons:

  1. Unable to qualify for a bank account due to bad credit or poor banking history
  2. Unstable or low income doesn’t allow the opening or maintaining of an account
  3. There are no desired banks easily accessible
  4. Want more privacy or don’t trust banks

While the number 8.4 million shows a lot of unbanked people for the nation, certain areas have higher numbers across the states than others. In Houston, Texas, they are known to have one of the highest rates of the nation’s unbanked average. About 11.8% equal to about 1 million households.

How We Made Our Second Chance Bank Picks

It is not always easy to find a second chance bank account. Most banks don’t prioritize these types of accounts in advertising at their locations or on their websites. Sometimes you find out there is a second chance account option after you apply and don’t end up qualifying for a regular checking account. With our list of second chance bank accounts, you have choices for a fresh start checking to help you manage and build back your financial reputation.

We completed research on the top second chance checking accounts looking for diverse options that will benefit and give you variety, anywhere from local banks in your city to online-only banks. To also make it easier for you to find the right account, we determined our picks of accounts with the lowest fees and best features whether online-only or in your local area.

Second Chance Banks In Houston Texas – Top 3

Are you apart of the 1 million households in Texas who don’t have a bank account? If you are unbanked because of your banking history or due to low income, we have developed a list of second chance checking accounts that will help you get back on track financially.

1. Radius Bank

Radius Bank offers an online-based banking experience that will give you what you need to become successful with a bank account while allowing you to conduct daily financial transactions. The Essential Checking is a second chance account that will help you rebuild your financial record. There is a monthly service fee of $9, however after 12 months of positive banking history, you will be eligible for a regular checking account for a zero monthly fee!

Features of the account:

  • There is a monthly service charge of $9
  • The daily transaction limit with your debit card is $500
  • You are only allowed mobile deposits up to $1,000 a day and $2,000 per 10 days.
  • If you display positive banking history for 12 months, you will be eligible to upgrade to one of their regular checking accounts.
  • You will have access to your account online 24/7 through the mobile app or with virtual banking.
  • Enroll in direct deposit
  • Send money to other people and businesses to pay bills.
  • Become financially stable and be more in-tune with your money by utilizing their financial dashboard to create a budget, track spending, track and pay off debts, connect other accounts, and more.

2. Chime Bank

Chime is an online-based bank available to anyone, no matter where you live. Chime’s Spending account and VISA debit card is our next choice because they are all about helping their members by charging no fees. They also give you easy access to your account information and help you improve your financial situation with many helpful services. Best of all, if you are struggling for a second chance, Chime does not require a credit check or a ChexSystems report to be eligible.

The Features a Chime Spending Account Offers:

  • Getting paid early, as soon as your direct deposit from your employer or payor notifies Chime of the incoming deposit, they will make it available to you right away. Monitoring deposits may allow you to have your money up to 2 days earlier!
  • Easily access your account with online and mobile banking features.
  • If you are qualified, you can become eligible for fee-free overdraft protection.
  • Allow Chime to help you save by automatically rounding up each transaction and putting it into your savings account.
  • Pay other people or companies quickly with online bill pay and use your spending account to mail checks when needed.
  • Control your card by disabling transactions on your mobile app if you happen to lose your card.
  • If you lose your card, a replacement is always free.
  • Take advantage of mobile payments with Google or Apple apps, and leave your card at home.
  • Withdraw cash from their network of over 38,000 fee-free ATMs
  • No hidden monthly service fees or minimum balance requirements.

Apply for free by entering your email; it only takes 2 minutes!


BBVA Free Checking is our number 1 pick and for a good reason. If you need a second chance and want an account with no fees, then the Free Checking account is the way to go. BBVA doesn’t use ChexSystems to determine eligibility for their new members; they use Early Warning to help them see a clearer picture when it comes to your banking history. Based on your history, they will assess risk and detect fraud if applicable. With 20 branch locations in Houston, you not only have convenience but a fresh start as well.

The Features a Free Checking Account Offers:

  • No monthly service fees or hidden charges
  • No ATM fees at BBVA ATMs, there are about 20 in Houston, Texas alone!
  • Free VISA debit card per account holder
  • Receive cashback by redeeming offers and making qualifying purchases
  • Set up customizable alerts on your account for purchases made on your account, deposits being made, and more.
  • Free online and mobile banking to manage your account no matter where you are
  • Receive free online and paper statements
  • Free unlimited check writing
  • Fine with a few fees? Customize the features you would like to add to your Free Checking accounts such as a safe deposit box, unlimited cashier and personal checks, and more.
  • You only need $25 to open your account!

It is easy to apply, you can do so online or in-person, and it only takes a few minutes!

4. Peoples Cash Solutions

Our last pick of the top 3 is Peoples Cash Solutions, known for providing people a fresh start checking bank account. They are based out of Texas, but you don’t have to live there to be eligible for an online-based second chance checking account. You are not subject to ChexSystems or TeleCheck; the only stipulation that could cause an account denial is with fraudulent activity on your background. People’s Second Chance Checking account gives you all the benefits of a regular account with minimal fees.

The Features a Second Chance Checking Account Offers:

  • No fee to open an account although there is a requirement of $30 as an activation deposit
  • No minimum balance requirements
  • Free debit MasterCard
  • No fee for writing checks out of your account
  • Receive a free checkbook when you enroll
  • Free online and mobile app banking and features such as bill pay qualifying after having an open account for 30 consecutive days.
  • Free paper account statements
  • Free access to automated phone banking and customer service
  • Enroll in direct deposit for easy access to your money or mail your check to Peoples Cash Solutions to deposit
  • Only $4.95 monthly service fee to keep the account open and active

You can easily apply for a second chance checking online, but you will need to follow the instructions to finish the account opening, such as mailing in a copy of your ID, sending in your deposit, and more.

Looking for a Fresh Start? These Banks Have Great Options Too.

We gave you our top 3 based on their features and the ease of enrolling in a second chance checking or savings account. Below are 6 more banks with locations in the Houston, Texas area that offer other account solutions that may meet your needs as well.

Houston Metropolitan Federal Credit Union

This credit union in Texas offers a Freedom Checking account; they call this their “Fresh Start” account. Features include required financial education, a minimum balance requirement of $250, and a $10 monthly service fee if minimum balance is not maintained. Direct deposit is required, fee-free access to AMT network, credit report monitoring for your security, online banking, bill pay, and more.

Bank of Texas

At the Bank of Texas, you can apply for an Opportunity Checking account. The Opportunity Checking is a fresh start checking account that provides services such as a QuickSave tool, overdraft protection, and one free overdraft refund per year for accidents. You can also have access to free ATMs, free online statements, and the ability to upgrade your account after one year. There is a $10 monthly service fee that can be reduced to $5 with a qualifying direct deposit and a $50 minimum opening deposit.

First Service Credit Union

Another credit union based out of Texas, First Service Credit Union, offers a Fresh Start Checking account. Their features include a $25 opening deposit with no minimum balance requirement, free electronic statements, and a $9 monthly service fee. After 6 months, you can upgrade your account to start receiving cashback on debit purchases, interest on your account balance, and ATM fee refunds.

Members Trust of the Southwest Federal Credit Union

With Members Trust of the Southwest Federal Credit Union based out of Texas, you can apply for a New Start Checking account. With their second chance checking, you won’t have a card to start, but after 6 months, you will be eligible to apply for one. There is a $50 minimum opening deposit, and they provide overdraft protection to help you avoid bounced checks. All members receive unlimited check writing, free online banking, and bill pay.

Harris County Federal Credit Union

This Texas credit union, Harris County Federal, offers a fresh start checking call the Second Chance Share Draft Checking account. With this account, you are eligible to receive a card with access to their extensive network of fee-free Allpoint ATMs. You are also given unlimited check writing access, online and mobile banking, ePay, electronic account statements, and more.

Associated Credit Union of Texas

Take advantage of the 180 Checking account with the Associated Credit Union of Texas. The purpose is to help your turn your finances around and give you financial freedom. You can enjoy features that include a free debit card, unlimited check writing, no minimum balance requirement, free ATM access, online banking features, e-statements, and $100 courtesy pay to help you avoid overdrafts. There is a $10 monthly fee for this account. Another function with this credit union is called vBanking, where you can video chat live with an employee when you need assistance with your account.

A Second Chance Checking Will Benefit You

No matter your reason for not having a checking account, there are many benefits that will help you with day to day financial transactions and money management skills. That’s why recommend you check our the best banks for bad credit here

Resorting to money orders to pay your bills is costing you money every time you buy one. Compare the cost of the money order to the possible monthly fee a second chance checking account will charge you. And some second chance checking accounts don’t even have fees!

What about having to go to the grocery store every payday to cash your check? Or not being able to take a day off on a payday Friday so that you can pick up your check? What would you rather be doing than working on a payday or cashing a check at the store? Direct deposit is very convenient to have, it allows you more time, and some banks will give you your money earlier than your co-workers!

Sometimes it easier to find what you need or want to buy online by doing a Google search rather than traveling from store to store looking for a particular item. If you’re going to buy something online, then you have to purchase a prepaid debit card. With a debit card that withdrawals from your second chance checking bank account, it makes shopping online much more accessible. And if you are worried about fraud occurring on your card, make sure you monitor your online accounts often, use credit rather than your PIN when possible, and report fraud as soon as possible. VISA and MasterCard have zero liability policies that will cover you if fraud were to occur on your second chance checking account. If you are looking to open an online account then visit this guide

Lastly, it is much easier to manage and save your money when it is placed in a bank account. Many banks offer tools to help you limit overspending, features that automatically transfer money into your savings, and other financial education tools and products that will teach you money management. What are your financial goals? It could be that you want to have enough money saved in case of emergencies, maybe you want to buy a home someday, and perhaps you want to be able to spend money without the stress of living paycheck to paycheck. Whatever those goals are, use them as focal points and take advantage of financial tools to help you reach them! See our main page on. Check out banks that offer early direct deposit on this page.