Founded in 1855 to serve the needs of our community.
From the beginning, BankFive has been dedicated to serving the people and businesses in our communities. Our goal is to ensure that all of our Massachusetts and Rhode Island neighbors have a chance to improve their financial well-being.
Part of the community's fabric
BankFive was chartered on April 10, 1855, as the Fall River Five Cents Savings Bank, one of the first Five Cent Savings Banks in America. While other banks at that time required a minimum $1 deposit to open an account, we only required a five cent deposit, which was more achievable to many of the factory workers who worked and lived in our area. Our bank formally opened its doors on January 1, 1856, at the same site where our present Main Office is located at 79 North Main Street in Fall River, Massachusetts. Since then, we have weathered depressions, recessions, wars, and the great textile strike of 1904, and have always paid at least one dividend every year.
In 1914, we moved to temporary quarters diagonally across the street from where the Main Office stands, and remained there until October 1915, when we moved back to our 79 North Main Street address. On September 2, 1931, Savings Bank Life Insurance (SBLI) was established, and we became the 21st bank to issue their policies on November 1, 1931.
Our very first branch was our “Globe Office,” which opened at 1501 South Main Street in Fall River, Massachusetts on May 3, 1972. A couple of years later on May 30, 1974, a second branch, known as our “Flint Office”, was opened at 1301 Pleasant Street in Fall River. A third branch was opened at 4548 North Main Street in Fall River on January 5, 1976, and that branch was later moved and is now located at River View Marketplace at 4171 North Main Street in Fall River. Our fourth branch opened on February 2, 1976, in the Swansea Mall in Swansea, Massachusetts. This branch was relocated to its own standalone branch at 497 Milford Road in Swansea in 2004.
Our fifth branch, located at President Avenue and Elsbree Street in Fall River, opened its doors on January 27, 1978, and our sixth branch opened its doors on November 1, 1988, at 927 County Street in Somerset, Massachusetts. Both of these branches were relocated in the spring of 2011. North Dartmouth became home to our seventh branch in December 1998, and in 1999 we reconstructed our Corporate Headquarters.
Luzo Community Bank of New Bedford joined with BankFive in 2007 to strengthen our SouthCoast presence. This merger resulted in the addition of our Acushnet Avenue and County Street branches. Later that year, we opened our Fairhaven branch and our "Express" branch in Fall River.
In 2011 we announced the establishment of a charitable foundation with the Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts. The foundation continued to receive bank funding until the $1 million goal was realized in 2015. Since then, the BankFive Foundation Fund has provided financial support to the local community through grants that enrich schools and other organizations serving low- and moderate-income households.
In 2014, we opened our first Rhode Island branch at 590 Metacom Avenue in Bristol. That year we also opened a Loan Production Office in Cranston, Rhode Island.
In 2015 we proudly celebrated our 160th anniversary by unveiling our new logo and kicking off a series of community-oriented celebrations. These festivities included giving free gas to more than 100 people at local gas stations, giving away more than $1,000 in gift cards to local coffee shops, handing out free cookies featuring our new logo at our branches, and delivering gift baskets to first responders at our local fire and police stations.
In late 2018, we opened our Wrentham Mortgage Office and Hyannis Loan Office.
In 2022, BankFive, and the SouthCoast Community Foundation announced the creation of the President’s Scholarship Fund. The scholarship was established to honor the memory of past presidents & CEOs of BankFive. Because BankFive and its leadership value the importance education plays in an individual’s career, the BankFive Board voted to allocate $1.2 million to establish a scholarship fund. Scholarships are available to students from BankFive communities that are pursuing a college education and provides a four-year scholarship to a graduating senior from Bristol County, MA, Bristol and Newport County, RI, to attend an accredited college or university. The first scholarship recipient, to an entering freshman at Cornell University, was awarded in 2023.
Expanding our services even further, a Westport Lending Team and Mortgage Office was added in 2023.
Throughout the decades, we’ve remained committed to bringing affordable financial solutions and products to our Massachusetts and Rhode Island neighbors, and investing in the communities we service with financial and volunteer support.