A term deposit is a type of investment where you deposit your savings into an account for a fixed period. Over the term of the deposit, the bank or lender will pay you a fixed amount of interest on the initial deposit you invest.
Term deposits are considered a low-risk investment and can be a great tool for those looking to add an extra boost to their savings.
Because you’re essentially locking your money away for a set period, banks will usually offer higher interest rates on term deposits than regular savings accounts. The catch is that you can’t withdraw your funds while they’re locked into a term deposit.
For example, say you deposit $5,000 into a three-month short-term deposit: you won’t be able to use those funds until the term deposit has matured.
At the end of the term, you’ll get the initial $5,000 back, as well as any interest you earn during the term deposit.
The amount of money you can make by depositing your savings into a term deposit depends on the interest rate, the term and the amount you deposit.
To get a more accurate idea of how much you can earn by investing in a term deposit, use the Rate City term deposit calculator. Simply fill in your initial deposit amount, how long you intend to invest your money and the potential interest rate on the term deposit, and hit ‘calculate.’
We recommend using the term deposits calculator to compare a few different scenarios so you can see how much you can potentially earn by investing your savings into a term deposit.
How do I use a term deposit calculator
If you’ve got a stash of cash that you don’t need to access every day, use the Rate City term deposit calculator to work out how much you could earn by depositing those funds into a term deposit.
If you’re working towards a savings goal like a deposit or a holiday, a term deposit calculator can help you work out how much interest you can add to your savings by investing in a term deposit.
Use RateCity’s free online term deposit calculator to calculate the return on your fixed investment.
Get the security of a fixed rate of return. In addition to using the term deposit calculator, here are some additional features to consider which may affect your interest earnings:
Interest paid – Is your interest paid monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, annually or on maturity? Your final balance at the end of the term can vary depending on the frequency that interest is calculated. Our term deposit calculator takes into account the frequency of interest payments when a real product is selected from the table.
Nominal and effective interest rates – How are they calculated? The nominal rate is the advertised interest rate, whereas the effective rate is the potential interest rate including the compounding effect of payment frequency based on a 12-month term. The more frequent interest payments are, the higher the effective rate relative to the nominal rate, as regular interest payments are either compounded into the term deposit or can be reinvested elsewhere.
The final balance of your term deposit will differ depending on how interest is calculated and paid into your account. By using our term deposit calculator, you can find a strategy that will maximise your cash flow and nest egg.
Types of term deposits
When it comes to investing your money in a term deposit, you have two main options – short term deposits and long term deposits.
The amount of interest you’ll earn on a term deposit depends on the amount you invest, the length of time you choose and the interest rate. Use our free online term deposit calculator to compare the variables and calculate the return on your fixed investment.
While the premise is simple, it pays to do your research on the different types of term deposits available.
The first question you need to ask yourself is whether you want to invest in a short-term or a long-term deposit.
Short-term deposits vary in time and can range from 30 days (one month), 60 days (two months), 90 days (three months), 120 days (four months), 180 days (six months) all the way up to 12 months (one year). Short term deposits are best suited to savers looking for a short-term boost.
Short term deposits don’t tend to earn as much interest as long term deposits, but the upside of a short term deposit is that you don’t have to lock your cash away for as long.
Short term deposits are a low-risk way to use your money to make money. Short term deposits are for 12 months or less; the longer you keep your money invested, the more interest you’ll earn.
To work out exactly how much you stand to make, use our free online term deposit calculator to see whether investing for one, three, six or 12 months works best for you.
If you’re looking for a set-and-forget investment that steadily grows over a longer period, long term deposits might be a better option. Usually offered for periods of 12 months (one year) up to five years, long term deposits are a safe and steady way to incrementally earn interest and grow your savings. As an incentive to lock your savings away for a longer period, the bank or lender will usually offer higher interest rates on long term deposits.
While long term deposits offer a great degree of certainty, the downside of locking in an interest rate for a longer period is that you may miss out on any potential rate rises.
Withdrawing your money before the maturation date can come with hefty penalties, so before you apply, weigh up both the risk and reward. Using our free online term deposits calculator will help you work out what you can potentially gain by investing your money in both a long and short term deposit.
Some banks will offer the option of a rollover term deposit. This gives you the option of rolling your money over for another fixed term when your term deposit matures. Before you roll over, check to see that the rate is competitive.
What to consider when comparing term deposits
Once you’ve used the online term deposits calculator and worked out whether a short or long term deposit will work best for you, you’ll need to compare the other features of terms deposits to make the best decision.
When considering term deposits, think about your spending and savings habits. If you’re likely to continue saving and adding to your account regularly, you may want to consider high-interest savings accounts or using various types of term deposits.
Regardless of which account you choose, the amount of extra money you’ll earn depends on the interest rate. Take time to use the term deposits calculator to work out how the different interest rates will affect your bottom line.
You’ll also want to think about the term length and how likely you are to need the money in the near future. You may also need to consider that there might be penalties for withdrawing the money from the term deposit before it matures.