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On Chexsystems? Consider Debit Card Accounts To Get Back To Banking

Dec 29, 2007
If you've ever written a bad check (whether it was on purpose or accidental) or have had problems with banks, there's a pretty good chance that you're on a list maintained by ChexSystems. This list can cause you a lot of problems when it comes to getting a new bank account or doing other banking tasks. ChexSystems is a Consumer Reporting Agency, like TransUnion, Experian, and others. It provides a list of customers that it considers to be high risk to banks across the country.

Not everyone on this list really is a big risk, though. Some people end up on it because of errors in data, theft of their identities, and many other mistakes. Once you're on the list, however, it becomes very hard to get a new bank account. Most banks use ChexSystems data to decide whether or not you'll be allowed to open an account, whether or not that data is accurate. If you've been trying to find a bank that doesn't use the ChexSystems database in your area, you might have gotten frustrated, and resigned to going through life without an account. However, don't give up hope yet. Debit cards and Internet bank accounts are still an option.

If you're tired of constantly carrying cash, getting money orders, and using check cashing services, getting a debit card account could be the answer you're looking for. You can use these cards just like regular credit cards - at bookstores, gas stations, the grocery store, restaurants and online. Anywhere a Visa or MasterCard is accepted, you can use your debit card, including for getting cash from the ATM.

A debit card automatically deducts the amount of the purchase from your account, meaning that you don't have to pay interest or deal with credit. Since the transactions show up on your bank statement, you'll be able to track your spending. If you want, you can choose to have your paycheck deposited directly into your debit card account. That way, you won't have to use check cashing stores to get your money.

The biggest difference between a regular checking account and a debit account is that you normally don't get a checkbook with your debit card. You'll be able to pay your bills online via Echeck, or automatic debit. Many people prefer to use online banking services (such as those provided by debit card accounts), because they are free -- you don't even need to pay for a stamp and an envelope! Further, using online banking makes it even easier to keep your account balanced, so you avoid further banking problems.

This means that you still get most of the advantages of an ordinary checking account. There are still plenty of banks that permit opening a debit card account for people who are on the ChexSystems list. That makes this an excellent option if you're on the list and can't find a local bank that doesn't use it. A debit card account is a great alternative to an ordinary bank account.
About the Author
Kurt Lehmann is a financial services expert, researching and writing about topics including ChexSystems, Payday Loans , and Second Chance Checking.
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