Can you use a virtual address for a bank account or credit card? That’s the question we will look into today.
The answer here is: It depends.
Let’s take a look…
Virtual Address & Updating your bank or credit card details
Most banks and credit card companies will allow you to update your mailing address without complication.
As long as you pass the account security protocol, (i.e the relevant passwords for your online account, telephone security questions, etc), you will have access to your account.
You will then be able to change the address details linked to your account to that of the virtual address.
- Related Content: Can a Virtual Address Be Used as Residency?
Virtual Address & Applying for a new bank account or credit card
When using a virtual address to apply for a new bank account or credit card, the process can be a bit more complicated.
Very often when you apply for a new account or credit card, the issuer will check your credit report as part of the application process.
If you have never used the virtual address for any other financial-based services, there will be no match between that and your credit report.
In these circumstances, the issuer may ask for additional proof of residence. They may even decline the application altogether.
Matching a Credit Report to your Virtual Address
To avoid the mismatch between your virtual address and your credit report you should change the mailing address of existing financial services that you use, to that of the virtual mailbox provider.
For example, if you have a bank account or credit card, update the personal details to that of your virtual address.
After 2 to 3 months of billing cycles, any new credit report will show your details as being attached to the new virtual address.
Once this happens, you will be able to apply for a new account or credit card without issues.
- Related Content: Can I Use my Virtual Address for my Driver’s License?
What to do when you need a credit card immediately
In circumstances where you need to apply for a credit card immediately, you will need to use your established residential address in order to fast-track the process.
Assuming the financial institution is able to issue you with a credit card, you can change the address details to your virtual address after the card has been granted.
Other Issues: Virtual Addresses & Bank Accounts/Credit Cards
Other issues you might encounter when using a virtual address for your bank details rest in the fact it will not match your more established residential address.
In financial legal disputes such as inheritance claims or recovering monies in an FDIC claim, the virtual address may cause a red flag in terms of potential fraud.
You will normally be able to mitigate this with proof of residence plus proof of virtual address ownership for legitimate means.
However, the hassle of all that may make you think twice about using a virtual address.
Also, some financial institutions are beginning to stipulate that personal addresses used are not that of a CMRA, (which is the technical term for a virtual mailbox provider).
If this happens you will have to use a personal address of a family member, (assuming you no longer have a residential address).
You can then request either electronic correspondence or for your virtual address to be used as an alternative mailing address.
There you have it. When updating existing bank account or credit card details you will be able to change your address to that belonging to a virtual mailbox.
When applying for a new account or credit card, you will have to make preparations so that your credit report is linked to the virtual address.
In other circumstances, you might be forced to use an existing residential address (either owned by you or a trusted person), and then change the address details at a later date.
I’m a 25 year veteran of USPS. I’m retired now, but as the editor of Mailbox Master, I can’t quite remove myself from the carrier industry just yet. 🙂