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Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account review

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Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking
3.0
★★★★★
Finder score
Fee
$10 per month
APY
N/A
Minimum deposit to open
$25

Our verdict

A second-chance account with avoidable monthly fees and standard features.

The Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account is designed for those who don't qualify for traditional checking accounts. Unlike other second-chance products, this one comes with standard account features and ways to waive the monthly fee.

But you can't open this account directly. To open it, you'll first need to apply to another Wells Fargo checking account. If you're denied, you'll be eligible to apply for this second-chance account.

Pros

  • Most are eligible
  • Avoidable monthly fee
  • Easy access

Cons

  • Longer processing times
  • Limited availability

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  • Ask a question

How do I apply for a Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account?

You can’t open the Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account directly. You’ll be offered it as an alternative after being denied for a regular checking account. Start by applying for another Wells Fargo checking product:

  1. Go to the provider’s site and follow the steps to apply.
  2. From the Wells Fargo website, hover over Banking and Credit Cards, then click Checking Accounts.
  3. Enter your zip code.
  4. Click Compare All Accounts.
  5. Scroll down to Everyday Checking or Preferred Checking and click Open Now.
  6. Choose an individual or joint account, then sign in if you’re already a Wells Fargo customer.
  7. Enter your personal information, then click Continue.
  8. Choose your account options, fund your initial deposit and review the account terms.
  9. Submit your application.
  10. If your application is denied due to your banking history, Wells Fargo should reach out and offer you the option to open this account.

Eligibility

In order to open this account, you’ll need to meet basic eligibility requirements:

  • Minimum deposit of at least $25
  • Valid Social Security number or tax ID
  • Valid state-issued ID
  • Valid US address
  • Denied for a regular checking product due to credit or banking history

Required information

You’ll be asked for the following information during your application:

  • Name, date of birth and address
  • Social Security or tax ID number
  • Driver’s license or other state-issued ID
  • Contact information
  • Employment information

What are the benefits of the Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account?

Designed to get you back on your feet after past banking mistakes, some of Wells Fargo’s Opportunity Checking account perks include:
  • Easy access. Comes with checks and a debit card with free access to over 13,000 ATMs and 5,000 branches.
  • Most are eligible. Even if your name shows up on ChexSystems as a high-risk customer, you can likely qualify for this account.
  • Avoidable monthly fee. Unlike other second-chance checking accounts, Wells Fargo gives you three ways to waive the $10 monthly service fee.

How to avoid the monthly fee

While most second-chance accounts have mandatory fees, there are three ways to waive this account’s monthly fee:

  • Make 10 or more debit card transactions
  • Have $500 or more of qualifying direct deposits
  • Hold a minimum daily balance of $1,500 or more

Wells Fargo ATM network and fees

This account comes with a Wells Fargo debit card. Plus, you’ll have free access to Wells Fargo’s network of over 5,000 branches and 13,000 ATMs. However, if you use an out-of-network ATM, the following fees apply:
  • Domestic ATM fee: $2.50 per withdrawal, transfer or inquiry, plus fees from the ATM owner.
  • Foreign ATM fee: $5 per withdrawal, plus fees from the ATM owner.

What should I look out for?

As with most second-chance accounts, you can’t apply for the Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account directly, and the bank may close your account if you overdraft or can’t pay the monthly fee. Aside from these general cons, there are a few things to watch out for:

  • Longer processing times. Wells Fargo doesn’t process transactions on weekends, which can lead to longer processing times for transactions and payments.
  • Limited availability. Wells Fargo doesn’t have branches in HI, KY, LA, MA, ME, MO, NH, OK, RI, VT or WV.

If you prefer a second-chance account with different features, compare your options until you find one that’s right for you.

Compare with other checking accounts

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SoFi Checking and Savings
Finder Score: 4.5 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
SoFi Checking and Savings
$0 per month
$0
4.60% on balances of $0+
0.50% on balances of $0+
1.20% on balances of $0+
Get up to $300 cash bonus with qualifying direct deposit. Terms apply. This offer is available until June 30, 2024.
Earn up to 4.60% APY on savings by meeting deposit requirements, and 0.50% APY on checking balances. Members without deposit requirements will earn 0.50% APY on both savings and checking balances. Turn on automatic savings or use the Roundups feature to help you reach your savings goals faster. Get up to $2M of additional FDIC insurance through a network of participating banks.
Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus
Finder Score: 4.3 / 5: ★★★★★
Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus
$0 per month
$0
N/A
Earn up to 2% cashback rewards on everyday purchases. Pay $0 fees for overdraft, domestic wire transfer and monthly maintenance. Member FDIC.
Cash Card by Cash App
Finder Score: 4.4 / 5: ★★★★★
Cash Card by Cash App
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The Cash App Cash Card lets you pay for goods and services both online and in stores using your Cash App balance. Enjoy features like ATM access, direct deposit, instant discounts at select stores and a customizable card.
Axos Bank Rewards Checking
Finder Score: 4.2 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
Axos Bank Rewards Checking
$0 per month
$0
3.30% on balances of $0 to $50,000
Use promo code AXOS300 and apply by June 30th, 2024, to earn up to $300 bonus, $50 each month you meet requirements: Make direct deposits of $5,000+ each month for the first 7 months and maintain an average balance of $7,000.
Earn up to 3.3% APY after meeting rate requirements. Get ATM free reimbursements at all domestic ATMs. Pay $0 monthly or overdraft fees. FDIC insured.
Chime® Checking Account
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Chime® Checking Account
$0 per month
$0
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Save easily and access your paycheck up to 2 days early with direct deposit. Pay $0 monthly fees, and no minimum balance is required. Access 24/7 support and get daily balance and transaction alerts. FDIC insured.
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How do I graduate to a standard checking account?

Wells Fargo is vague about upgrading to a regular checking account, but other customers have mentioned the following details:

  • The account will be reviewed around the one year mark
  • You can’t overdraft the account or miss any monthly fees

Generally, Wells Fargo will monitor your account activity to make sure you’re using the account responsibly. The bank will eventually reevaluate your activity and usage to determine if you’re eligible for a standard checking account.

How do I deposit or withdraw money?

Here are all the ways you can access funds in your Wells Fargo Opportunity Checking account:

Deposits

  • Mobile check deposit
  • ATM or branch
  • Phone, online or wire transfer
  • Direct deposit
  • Mail a check

Withdrawals

  • ATM or branch
  • Phone, online or wire transfer
  • Cashback from participating merchant
  • Bill pay

How do I contact Wells Fargo customer service?

There are a few ways you can get in touch:

  • Phone: 800-869-3557 (24/7)
  • Email: Sign on to your online account to send a secure email
  • Twitter: @Ask_WellsFargo
  • Facebook: @WellsFargo

Frequently asked questions

Checking account ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent

★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

We analyze top checking accounts and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include: monthly fees, the ease at which monthly fees can be waived, the breadth of ATM access, ATM and overdraft fees, and customer service.

Read the full methodology of how we rate checking accounts.

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