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Learn How to Open an Account at an FDIC-Insured Bank

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Last Updated: January 28, 2021
“Becoming a part of the banking and financial system in the U.S. is a pathway into being a shareholder in the U.S. and having a vested interest not just in yourself, but also in the well-being in your community and the country as a whole.”
– FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams
A jar filled with money

If you are in one of the 7.1 million U.S. households without a bank account, and you are looking to open an account, there are resources available to help you get started. Banking relationships generally begin with a checking or savings account, and may lead to low-interest loans and mortgages.

Many FDIC-insured banks offer accounts with low (or no) monthly maintenance fees when you have direct deposit or maintain a minimum balance. Many FDIC-insured bank accounts also offer free access to in-network automated teller machines (ATMs), and insure your money up to $250,000 per account. Learn more about the top reasons to open a bank account.

Getting Started

A “checkless” checking account could be a good option if you are thinking about opening your first bank account. With a checkless account, you can make purchases with a debit card instead of writing checks. As an FDIC-insured bank account, a checkless account may allow you to access your account and pay your bills online or using a mobile app. Checkless accounts typically enable customers to avoid spending more than the amount available in the account, which means if there is not enough money in your account to cover a transaction, the transaction will not go through and you will not be charged a fee.

Many FDIC-insured banks have options to open an account online. You can also schedule an appointment to open an account in-person at your local bank branch.

Banks offer many types of accounts and programs, so there is likely one that can meet your specific needs. This checklist can help you choose the best type of account for your individual needs.

Finding a Bank and Opening an Account Online

The FDIC’s BankFind tool can help you locate an FDIC-insured bank in your area. In addition, the following organizations have compiled lists of banks that offer accounts that can be opened online:

Additional Resources

Specific information regarding the unique features of your new bank account are available through your FDIC-insured bank. Below are some additional tools and resources to help you use your account: