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EQ Bank review
Earn high interest rates and pay no monthly fees with a savings account or GIC from the top-rated EQ Bank.
EQ Bank is a leading Canadian online bank known for offering low fees and competitive interest rates. In this EQ Bank review, we break down what you need to know about its accounts and services, rates, safety, fees, pros and cons and more.
What is EQ Bank?
EQ Bank was launched in 2016 by Equitable Bank and is headquartered in Toronto. It operates entirely online, so there are no branches or locations you can visit for in-person service. Low overhead costs translate into lower fees — EQ Bank is known for being affordable and offering very competitive interest rates.
EQ Bank offers a range of personal banking and investment accounts including savings accounts, joint savings accounts, US dollar accounts, TFSAs, RSPs and GICs. It offers international money transfers via Wise, a third party service. EQ Bank also hosts a mortgage marketplace where you can browse 2,000+ products from various lenders.
What EQ Bank offers
EQ Bank offers a range of personal and investment accounts as well as money transfer and mortgage solutions.
EQ Bank Savings Plus Account
Earn 2.5% on funds held in a EQ Bank Savings Plus Account. Joint Savings Plus Accounts are available for up to 3 people.
Perks including zero monthly fees, no minimum balance requirement and free Interac e-Transfers, electronic funds transfers (EFTs) and bill payments. But you won’t get a debit card to make ATM withdrawals, and you can only hold up to $200,000 ($500,000 for Joint Savings Plus Accounts) in your account.
EQ Bank Card
The EQ Bank Card is a prepaid Mastercard linked to EQ Bank’s Savings Plus Account. Just load money onto the card from your savings account and start earning the same interest as the funds in your Savings Plus Account, plus cashback. The prepaid EQ Bank Card works like an everyday bank card: you can use it anywhere Mastercard is accepted to pay for purchases in-store or online and to withdraw cash from an ATM.
How do I get started with the EQ Bank Card?
You’ll need to satisfy the following criteria to qualify for an EQ Bank Card:
EQ Bank TFSA
Open an EQ Bank TFSA (Tax Free Savings Account), and earn 3% on your balance. Grow your funds tax free, pay no monthly fees and make free withdrawals whenever you want. You can also set up recurring deposits from your EQ Bank Savings Plus Account or any other bank account.
EQ Bank US Dollar Account
Earn 2.00% on funds held in an EQ Bank US Dollar Account, which comes with a competitive exchange rate and zero monthly fees. Use the currency conversion calculator built into EQ’s online banking portal to get the latest CAD/USD exchange rate. Like other EQ Bank accounts, US Dollar Account balances are insured by the CDIC.
EQ Bank RSP Savings Account
With a EQ Bank RSP, you can save for retirement by earning a competitive 2.5% rate on your balance. Set up recurring deposits to ensure that your funds grow consistently. Money can be deposited and grown in RSPs tax free. You’re only taxed when you make withdrawals.
EQ Bank GIC (guaranteed investment certificate)
EQ Bank offers some of the highest interest rates that you can get for GICs in Canada. The EQ Bank 1 Year GIC is held in a nonregistered account and offers a 5% rate of return. The EQ Bank 5 Year GIC offers a 4.25% rate of return and can be held in a registered TFSA or RSP. You can start investing with as little as $100.
EQ Bank International Money Transfers
EQ Bank customers can send money transfers to 175 countries in 50 currencies through their online banking portals via Wise, a third party international money transfer service. Wise offers competitive transfer fees, zero-markup exchange rates and high sending limits, so you can get your money where it needs to go.
EQ Bank mortgage marketplace
EQ Bank offers a marketplace where you can explore 2,000+ mortgage products offered by EQ and many other Canadian lenders. EQ Bank customers can get exclusive rates, quick pre-qualification and assistance from professional mortgage brokers. It’s completely free, but you have to be an EQ Bank customer to use the service.
Pros and cons
- Easy application. The online application is quick and easy to fill out.
- No monthly fees. Enjoy zero monthly account maintenance fees.
- Competitive interest rates. Interest rates start at 2.5%, which is high by industry standards.
- Deposit insurance. Deposits in EQ Bank accounts are insured up to $100,000 by the CDIC.
- Low minimum for GICs. Start investing in GICs with as little as $100 (compared to $1,000 for some other digital banks).
- Free transfers. Send money to/from your account with free Interac e-Trasfers, EFTs, bill payments and mobile cheque deposits.
- Debit card. The new EQ Bank debit card can be used to withdraw cash, even from a savings account.
- Cheap international money transfers. You’ll be able to make cheap international transfers from your account using third-party service, Wise.
- User friendly mobile app. Easily check your balance and manage your money with the EQ Bank app for Android and iOS devices.
- Slow bank-to-bank withdrawals. You may need to wait several business days to withdraw funds from your account via bank-to-bank transfer.
- Maximum balance for EQ Bank Savings Plus Account. You can only hold up to $200,000 in an EQ Bank Savings Plus Account ($500,000 for joint account holders).
- No physical locations. It’s not possible to visit a physical location to get in-person service.
EQ Bank app
The EQ Bank mobile app is available for download on Google Play and the Apple App Store.
|Google Play app reviews||2.9/5 stars based on 4.58K ratings|
|Apple App Store app reviews||4.7/5 stars based on 19.5K ratings|
Ratings current as of December 6, 2022.
How do I open an EQ Bank Savings Plus account?
- Click Go to site on below to get started.
- Complete the application with details such as your name, email address, Social Insurance Number and birth date.
- Verify your ID, and deposit funds into your account via Interac e-Transfer, EFT or mobile cheque deposit using the EQ Bank mobile app.
To open an EQ Bank account, you must satisfy the following requirements:
- Be at least the age of majority in your province or territory (18 or 19 years old)
- Be a Canadian resident (Quebec residents cannot open an EQ Bank Savings Plus Account)
- Have a Social Insurance Number (SIN)
Is EQ Bank safe?
Deposits held in EQ Bank accounts are insured by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC). This means that, in the unlikely event the bank fails, your deposits will be insured up to $100,000.
The platform follows a number of industry-standard best practices for protecting your data and money including data encryption, strong password requirements, security questions and regularly monitoring the platform for fraud.
The EQ Bank Mobile and Online Banking Security Guarantee states that you’ll be 100% reimbursed for losses from unauthorized account activity, provided you’ve met all your responsibilities.
How can I contact EQ Bank customer service?
EQ Bank customer service can be reached by phone 7 days a week from 8:00AM to midnight. You can also get help online from a chatbot, or reach EQ Bank by letter mail.
EQ Bank offers convenient account options, very competitive interest rates, low fees and unlimited free transfers. But you may want to look elsewhere if you want in-person service or access to a full suite of banking products and services. Check out our banking hub for more useful guides and resources.
EQ Bank FAQs
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