Compare online savings accounts
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Intro 4 months then 0.35%
Gold Award Winner 2020
An online-based savings account that rewards customers with a high introductory rate and no ongoing fees or minimum balance conditions.
Earn a competitive return on your nest egg with this savings account that also offers branch access and no ongoing fees.
Savers may boost their nest eggs with this savings account offering a high ongoing rate and no ongoing fees.
Intro 3 months then 0.05%
Whether you’re saving for a holiday, house renovations, a wedding or a new car, there are many exciting reasons to open a savings account.
Achieving your savings goals can feel like an uphill battle, and the urge to dip into them is always there, but there are many ways to make the journey a little easier.
Online savings accounts
It’s never been easier to save thanks to online savings accounts. Long gone are the days of long bank queues; online savings accounts allow 24/7 access.
Online savings accounts are a competitive choice when comparing different savings tools. Not only do they offer higher interest rates and lower fees, they encourage you to save by rewarding regular deposits, minimal withdrawals and keeping your balance at a certain amount.
Whether you’re teaching your children financial literacy or saving for a holiday, online savings account can help you through any savings situation.
Savings Account Tips
- Set monthly savings goals
If you’re looking to save $5,000 in the next year or two, the thought of that big number can be overwhelming. However, if you break down those savings into easy monthly deposits it can take away a lot of the stress around “how can I possibly save that much money!”
Online savings accounts typically reward regular deposits through higher bonus rates. If you set a budget and save $200 a month, you’d have $5,000 in two years without any help, but if you accrue higher interest through regular monthly deposits, that time frame will be even shorter.
- Different saving accounts for different savings goals
You can use different savings accounts for different savings goals.
If you’re hoping to save up for an emergency fund, a high interest savings account may be a competitive option for you. Use the RateCity online comparison tool to find one that suits your needs.
You can teach your children great money habits early through a children’s savings account. Help them to do their own online comparison research to find a competitive savings account for their pocket money. If you develop their financial literacy early, they’ll find it easier to navigate through complex financial products and strategies later in life.
- Use online comparison tools
You wouldn’t buy the first house or car you saw without comparing a few options first, and the same is true for savings accounts.
Online comparison tools are the most effective way to ensure you choose the most competitive savings account for your individual needs. Simply enter a few details, including your initial deposit, your monthly deposit and your saving period, and you can compare account types from Australian banks and lender.
And while it may seem that there couldn’t be that many differences between savings accounts, you’d be surprised how many traps you can fall into if you’re unprepared.
When choosing your new savings account, it’s important to use online comparison tools to examine the following:
- What is the interest rate?
It may seem like “the higher the rate the better”, but you’ll also want to look for a savings account with a rate that is higher than the Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) rate. Ensure that the advertised interest rate is not just an introductory rate that may drop to a lower rate after a set period.
- Can I earn promotional and/or bonus rates?
Lenders will use promotional and/or bonus rates to incentivise customers to not only join with them, but reach their savings goals. This may be through higher interest rates when you meet a minimum deposit amount each month, or a higher interest rate for the first six months of the account.
- What are the fees involved?
There are plenty of zero fee options available, so use online comparison tools to ensure you’re not paying them. These fees include monthly fees, ATM withdrawal fees and electronic transaction fees.
Personal Finance Writer
Alex is a personal finance writer and PR professional at RateCity, and has been writing about finance for over three years. She is passionate about closing the gender pay and superannuation gap, and aims to help young Aussies to overcome their financial apathy and better manage their finances. Alex has been published in numerous print and online outlets, including Money Magazine, Lifehacker Australia, and Business Insider.
Today's top savings accounts products
Bonus Saver Account
*Bonus interest is paid when a customer has made an eligible deposit of $20 into the Bonus Saver account in the calendar month and made 5 eligible Visa card purchases on the linked Everyday or Glide account in the calendar month
- Branch access
- No ongoing fees
- No minimum balance
Can you set up a savings account online?
Yes. Several large and small banks offer online applications for savings accounts, and there are also online-only financial institutions to consider.
Online-only savings accounts are often less expensive than other savings accounts, though they may not offer the same flexibility, features, or face-to-face service as more traditional savings accounts.
What is the interest rate on savings accounts?
As banks frequently change their rates, the most accurate way to look at interest rates on savings accounts is to use a savings accounts comparison tool. When you look at the savings rate check what the maximum and minimum rates are. Often banks will offer you a promotional rate for the first few months which is competitive, but then revert back to a base rate which can sometimes be less than inflation. Ongoing bonus rates are often a safer bet as they will keep rewarding you with the maximum rate, provided you meet their criteria
How to make money with a savings account?
Savings accounts make you money by earning interest on your savings. The more money you deposit, the longer you leave it in the account, and the higher the account’s interest rate, the more interest you’ll be paid by the bank or financial institution, and the more your wealth will grow.
To make sure your savings account makes money and doesn’t lose money, it’s important to maintain a large enough minimum balance that the annual interest earned exceeds any annual fees charged on the account.
How much money should I have in my savings account?
A good rule of thumb when working out a minimum balance for your savings account is to make sure that you’ll earn more in annual interest on your savings than what you’ll be charged in annual fees.
If you’re saving with a specific goal in mind, prepare a budget so the interest you earn on your deposits will help you efficiently reach this goal. Online financial calculators may be helpful here.
Can you have a joint savings account?
Yes. Joint savings accounts can be useful for two or more people wanting to combine their savings to meet shared financial goals, including spouses, flatmates and business partners.
Some joint savings accounts require all parties to sign before they can access the money. While less convenient, this extra security can help encourage all parties to meet their shared financial goals.
Other joint savings accounts allow any of the account holders to access the money. These accounts can be convenient for financially responsible couples that trust one another implicitly.
Can you set up direct debits from a savings account?
It’s not usually possible to set up a direct debit from your savings account to cover ongoing expenses or bills, as savings accounts are structured around growing your wealth by earning interest on regular deposits, and discouraging withdrawals.
Some transaction accounts allow you to set up direct debits and also earn interest, though you may not enjoy as much flexibility as a dedicated transaction account, or get as high an interest rate as a dedicated savings account.
Who has the highest interest rates for savings accounts?
How to open a savings account for my child?
Some banks and financial institutions allow parents to open a bank account for their child as soon as it is born, and start depositing funds to go towards the child’s future.
Children’s savings accounts generally don’t have fees, and are structured to help develop positive financial habits by limiting withdrawals, encouraging regular deposits, and earning interest on the savings, similarly to standard savings accounts.
What is a savings account?
A savings account is a type of bank account in which you earn interest on the money you deposit. This makes it one of the easiest and safest investment tools.
How do I open a savings account?
Opening a savings account is a relatively simple process. If you’ve found an account with a suitable interest rate, you’ll just need to get in contact with your chosen lender via a branch, phone call or hop online to begin the process.
You may be required to provide:
- Personal details, including identification (driver’s license, passport etc.)
- Tax file number
- Employment details
How does interest work on savings accounts?
The type of interest savings accounts accrues is called compound interest. Compound interest is interest paid on the initial deposit amount, as well as the accumulated interest on money you have. This is different from simple interest where interest is paid at the end of a specified term. Compound interest allows you to earn interest on interest at a higher frequency.
Example: John deposits $10,000 into a savings account with an interest rate of 5 per cent that he leaves untouched for 10 years. At the end of the first year he will have $10,512 in savings. After ten years, he will have saved $16,470.
What is a good interest rate for a savings account?
A good rule of thumb to keep in mind with savings accounts is to look for a rate that is higher than the CPI inflation rate. This number is constantly changing, so check the Reserve Bank of Australia’s page. If you aren’t earning interest above this then the value of your money will go backwards over time.
Can I overdraft my savings account?
A lot of savings accounts won’t let you overdraw. Some will allow this feature but you’ll need to apply first. It’s best to read the fine print and check with your lender whether this is a feature they offer. It can be a helpful addition, but as your lender can charge you a fee as well as interest for going into negative numbers, it’s best to avoid overdrafting when possible.
Can you direct deposit to a savings account?
Yes. You can make one off payments or set up regular direct deposits into a savings account. This can be organised easily through online banking or by making deposits in a branch. Talk to your lender to find out the easiest way for you to set up direct deposits.
How can I get a $4000 loan approved?
While personal loans and medium amount loans don’t offer guaranteed approval, there are steps you can take to help increase the likelihood of your application being approved, including:
- Fulfilling the eligibility criteria (providing ID, proof of residency, proof of income etc.)
- Checking your credit history (you can order one free copy of your credit file per year, and make sure that there aren’t any errors that may be bringing down your credit score)
- Comparing carefully before applying (making multiple loan applications can mean having your credit checked multiple times, which can look bad to some lenders and reduce your chances of being approved by them)