A surprisingly large number of Americans do not have a bank account. According to a survey conducted by the Pew Charitable Trusts, a nonpartisan think tank based in Washington, D.C., approximately 37 million adults fall into this category. The majority of these individuals have annual household incomes that are less than $25,000. Being unbanked comes with several disadvantages. For example, getting a loan is difficult. Often, the only option is to rely on alternative lenders and the financing from these sources can be very expensive. There are other drawbacks as well. If you don’t have an account with a traditional financial institution, it can be difficult to build your credit history. Consequently, getting a car loan or a loan for your small business may not be easy. Why do so many Americans remain unbanked? A report published by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in October 2016, titled FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households points out that over 50% of those without a bank account said that they do not have enough money.

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