Bank On Houston
Why Do I Need An Account
Who are the unbanked in Houston
As of the 2000 census, Houston’s per capita income was $20,101. In general, per capita income is lowest in the eastern half of the city where minorities tend to be the majority. For example, Magnolia Park, Carverdale and Greater Third Ward have the lowest per capita incomes in the city. According to a Brookings Institute study, low income Houston neighborhoods have less access to a bank or credit union than high income neighborhoods.
The social cost
An in-depth analysis of five minority dominated neighborhoods found that as many as 51% of the households in these neighborhoods do not have relationships with banking institutions. Without a bank account, people pay more to conduct financial transactions. Families do not have safe places to keep their money. Robberies tend to be more prevalent around check cashing outlets, especially on paydays. Unbanked individuals are especially vulnerable in the event of a disaster. Seven out of ten Hurricane Katrina evacuees did not have bank accounts. As a result, their money washed away when the levies broke. Banking the unbanked can help reduce these social costs while creating opportunities for helping families achieve financial stability, converting their current spending on high-cost services into savings and wealth.