How to open a US checking account from abroad as a US citizen?

I’m a US citizen who has been living abroad for a considerable amount of time. I will be coming back soon.

I am now looking to open a checking account in the US. But without a domicile, it seems impossible. And without an account, I can’t rent a place.

How do I go about this? I’ve tried talking to bank reps and they all inevitably say I would need an address to go ahead with it. Only one rep said the address wouldn’t be a problem if I were to go in person, but I’m not very sure since I’ve spoken to many, and only one said so.

If I were to get on a plane and come back to the US will I be able to get a checking account without an address?

 

ANSWER 1

Depending on which country you currently reside in, you might be able to open a TransferWise multi currency account which includes the option of a USD bank account. It will allow you to transfer and convert into USD and includes a MasterCard multi currency debit card; it does not include checks, but you can do ACH and wire transfers within the USA.
Pre-FATCA it used to be easy for non USAians and USAians resident abroad to open domestic US accounts; sadly the compliance costs outweigh the potential profits so most US financial institutions avoid servicing non residents – many long-term non US accounts were shut at short notice, leaving clients scrambling to find new non US accounts.

You must have an address it is a federal requirement. A bank or credit union often requires proof of residency like a utility bill or lease agreement or an ID with your address. Online account opening is fine for typical cases, not ones that are out of the ordinary like yours. Without a US address, you’re going to need to call the bank or banks you’re interested in and see what they can do.

 

ANSWER 2

I had this issue.

I got an ID using my parent’s address then signed up for a national bank.

Perhaps you can open up a P.O. box and use the real address to sign up. I did this as well and my card was sent to it even though my ID had a different address. That was with a credit union.

I would suggest reaching out to a friend or family to borrow their address as a mailing address for sometime. I saw a user say that you will need to prove residence, but that is not always the case.

My bank in particular only requires a verification of address if the identification is less than 2 months old. Otherwise, we would not normally ask for address verification.

I would try and explain your situation to a few different banks and see what their opening procedures are like. Some are more lenient than others but I don’t think it’s impossible. Good luck.

 

We can’t answer this for you. You’ll need to ask the individual banks if it’s something they’d allow. You can’t just put a friend or relative’s address?

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