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Nobody’s perfect, but if you’ve had negative banking activity in the past, realize that those errors might have a long-term impact on you and your business.
Just like credit bureaus keep track of your credit history, adjusting your credit score based on whether you pay your credit card bills on time, your credit to debt ratio, and other activities, financial institutions may run a credit check on how well small business owners manage their money in checking and savings accounts. 
There’s a banking reporting agency called ChexSystems that keeps track of your banking activity that financial institutions use to determine whether someone applying for a new account is a risk or not. Just like having bad credit may hinder you from qualifying for low-interest financing (leaving you with higher-cost options like merchant cash advance loans), so too can having a bad ChexSystems report make it challenging to open a business (or personal) checking account.
Compare the Best Business Checking Accounts
Opening a business checking account can increase your chances of getting financing and simplify your cash flow management. Use our research to quickly and easily find the right account for your business.
When it comes to learning how to open a business bank account with no ChexSystems report, it may be more difficult, however, there are financial institutions, both online and locally, who will let you open an account without running the report. Be aware that these options may come with higher monthly service fees or other limitations in terms of account features that you wouldn’t otherwise have.
ChexSystems is a consumer reporting agency that provides information on consumers’ use of deposit accounts. Financial institutions can access details about the following:
The ChexSystems score is similar to a credit score in that it indicates the level of risk a consumer provides to banks. The scores range from 100 to 899, with the higher indicating less risk.
(Curious about your business credit report? Access it and get your free business credit scores here.)
Although ChexSystems reports on consumer banking transactions, they still impact your business. Just like small business loans may require a personal guarantee, or use your personal credit scores as part of your application, your personal banking history may be pulled if you’re applying for a business checking account.
Banks consider how you manage your personal money as an indicator of how you might manage your business account. So they often pull your personal ChexSystems report during the application process.
All that being said, there are still ways to open a business checking account online, either by cleaning up your ChexSystems report or by working with a bank that doesn’t pull your report.
Let’s look at banks that don’t use ChexSystems as a last resort, because you’re better off trying to improve your report and score. Start by requesting your report from ChexSystems. It’s free to do so once a year.
If you’ve already been denied an application to open a checking account, your report may provide insight into why that happened. You’ll see all the activities banks have reported, like you having a negative account balance or bouncing a check. If anything, it can be eye-opening to see your mistakes laid out.
If you see anything on your report that you believe to be inaccurate, first research your own bank records to confirm that it is an error, then dispute it with ChexSystems.
In addition to inaccurate activity, make sure to check that your social security number and contact information is correct on your report, and if it’s not, dispute that as well.
Investigations on disputes take up to 30 days, so allow plenty of time for the process.
In the event that you have unpaid bank fees or other debts that may be causing red flags in your ChexSystems report, pay them off immediately so that your report is more appealing and your ChexSystems score is higher, qualifying you for more account options.
Once you’ve cleared up any discrepancies and paid any banking fees, you can speed up the process by reaching out to the financial institutions that reported on you to update their reports.
Even if your bank updates its report to ChexSystems, it may take a few weeks for everything to catch up. ChexSystems says it will update resolved disputes within 30 days, but give it a little more time before you try to open a checking account.
Plan B, if you don’t want to deal with the steps above, is to apply for a business checking account that doesn’t use ChexSystems.
Most of your options here will be online banks, though there are a few local banks that also offer options to those with bad credit or low ChexSystems scores. Be aware that, while these bank accounts will offer the features you’re looking for, like a debit card or direct deposit, they may also have a minimum balance requirement or higher monthly maintenance fees. Still, if this is your only option, you can use this account to make deposits and withdrawals without incident, rebuild your ChexSystems score, and then later qualify for a less restrictive account elsewhere.
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When you’re ready to open a checking account, start with the list of institutions in the section below, also called second chance banks. These banks have less strict criteria to open an account in terms of your ChexSystems or credit scores but do have some drawbacks.
In addition to higher service fees, you may also not have overdraft protection, which means if you try to use your debit card for more than the balance in your account, the transaction won’t go through. Accounts that offer overdraft protection would let the transaction process and then charge you a fee. You may also not have access to paper checks (some of these accounts are called checkless checking accounts).
You may need a minimum balance to open your account, as well as need to maintain a specified daily balance to keep your account in good standing. Wait until you have more than enough for that opening deposit to apply for your account so you’ll be off to a great start.
It may be challenging to find a free checking account or interest-bearing checking with a second chance bank or credit union, but you’ll still be able to use online bill pay, get a free debit card, and have access to surcharge-free ATMs.
Start your research with the following best banks for no ChexSystems reports. There are far fewer second chance banks offering business checking accounts than personal ones, so one of your options is to open a personal checking account with one of the following, build your banking history, then apply for a business checking account down the road.
While Chime doesn’t offer business checking accounts, it is a popular online business bank account option for personal accounts. Accounts come with a business debit card and early direct deposit. There are no maintenance fees with your Chime account.
The Second Chance Checking Account from Peoples Cash Solutions has all of the features of a regular checking account that your business needs, including checks, debit card, and direct deposit. Fees are $4.95 a month.
This option is a business checking account that has no fees and unlimited transactions. Best of all, your money earns 1% interest.
Another personal checking account option to consider is the Essential Checking Account from Lending Club, an online financial institution that is also a lender. There are a few limitations to be aware of: you’ll have a daily debit card limit of $500 and a mobile banking check deposit limit of $1,000 per day. The monthly service charge is $9 a month. After 12 months, if you’re in good standing, you may be eligible to upgrade to another checking account.
Opening a new business checking account isn’t your only option if you’re trying to avoid ChexSystems but still manage your business’ funds. 
Credit cards can either be secured or unsecured. Secured credit cards require you to put down a security deposit, which then becomes your credit limit. This is usually offered as an option to people with bad credit looking to increase their credit scores. But you can also use it for your business expenses if you don’t qualify for a traditional bank account.
A money market account is like a cross between a business checking and a business savings account: you can earn more interest than you could with either, and you can access your funds relatively easily. Some money market companies do use ChexSystems, so find out if they do before applying.
Another option to consider is a prepaid debit card. Similar to a secured credit card, you can only spend what you load on the prepaid card, and any transactions above that balance will be declined. They don’t do a credit or ChexSystems check for applications.
If, despite the extra transaction fees and limits on overdraft protection or using checks, you decide to open a personal or business checking account with a second chance bank, use it wisely. Now is your opportunity to rebuild your banking history and eliminate negative ticks on your ChexSystems report (they keep your records for five years).If you have good banking behavior, you may qualify for better account options down the road, like interest-bearing checking or an account with lower or no fees. Remember: you’ll get the best business financing options for SBA loans and business credit cards, as well as the best business checking account options, when you manage your business finances responsibly.
This article was originally written on September 2, 2020 and updated on April 18, 2022.
This article currently has 39 ratings with an average of 4 stars.
Susan Guillory

Affiliate Marketing As A Business

Susan Guillory is an intuitive business coach and content magic maker. She’s written several business books and has been published on sites including Forbes, AllBusiness, and SoFi. She writes about business and personal credit, financial strategies, loans, and credit cards.
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Here we go again, another system to check on us, the consumer, and to screw up my credit, more so than I can.
My son, was given my name sake, upon birth. We do have different social security number. My son is the II (2nd); NOT Junior. I am or was the I (first).
Until, the creditors, and the credit reporting outlets, took it upon themselves, to start their own suffix. If you get where I’m going with this.
I have fought with Experion for years, and to this date, Experion, has not corrected my credit report. I’m 76, and tired. Experion, can eat doodoo,
See, I never, ever lived in Las Vegas, but these credit reporting agencies insist that I do. See, my son DID, years ago, took a job there. But, Experion has chosen to mix me up with my son, of which we do have our own SS Number.
Don’t give me this stuff, they are only human. I don’t think so.
So, short story, what can ChexSystem, do for me, but screw up my report too, and mix me up with my son.
I would like to subscribe, but dealing with another reporting agency, at my age, seems fruitless.
Thanks, but no thanks.
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