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Best Savings Accounts

Find the best savings account in Canada to make your money work harder for you.

Promoted

EQ Bank Savings Plus Account

EQ Bank Savings Plus Account logo
  • Earn 1.25% interest
  • Free transactions
  • Zero everyday banking fees
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With so many savings account options out there, how do you find the best account for you? We’ve done the research for you to help narrow down your options of the best savings accounts in Canada. Keep reading to learn how to find the best savings account for your needs, avoid common traps and get the most from your account.

Best high-interest savings accounts in Canada

EQ Bank Savings Plus Account

1.25%
Interest Rate
N/A
Promo Rate
$0
Min. Balance
EQ Bank offers an easy, streamlined, no-hidden-fees alternative to big banks. With the EQ Bank Savings Plus Account, you can enjoy a very competitive interest rate and low costs. EQ Bank is entirely online, so you can manage your money conveniently from home. While you can't perform cash transactions, you can easily send money to and from linked accounts at outside institutions for free. This high interest savings account is great if you're just starting to save or are trying to build up an existing, modest-sized fund.
Interest Rate 1.25%
Min. Balance $0
Promo Rate 1.25%
Transaction Fee unlimited
Interac e-Transfer Fee unlimited
Pros
  • Great interest rate.
  • $0 monthly fee.
  • Hidden fees: $0.
  • Can move money easily between accounts.
  • Interac e-Transfers are unlimited.
Cons
  • Some standard banking features not available such as overdraft protection, use of ATMs and the option to have paper statements.
  • No physical branches for in-person service.
  • Savings limited to $200,000 per customer.

Best high-interest savings accounts

Best Big Bank savings account in Canada

Scotiabank MomentumPLUS Savings Account

0.1%
Interest Rate
1.2%
Promo Rate
$0
Min. Balance
If you need a little help staying motivated to save, then Scotiabank MomentumPLUS Savings Account might be just what you need. Earn a regular interest rate of 0.1% right away, and enjoy a bonus of up to 1.1% if you consistently contribute to your account over a certain amount of time without withdrawing from it.
Interest Rate 0.1%
Min. Balance $0
Transaction Fee You’ll get an additional load of interest at regular intervals within your first year. This payout will occur at 90 days (0.30%), 180 days (0.40%), 270 days (0.50%) and 360 days (0.60%).
ATM Out of Network Fee $1.50
Pros
  • $0
  • $0 minimum balance requirement.
  • In-person service available at Scotiabank branches (note that there may be fees for certain types of teller-assisted services).
Cons
  • It takes some time to earn a higher interest rate.
  • You may be a charged a fee for Interac e-Transfers.

Disclaimer
Please note: All information about Scotiabank MomentumPLUS Savings Account has been collected independently by Finder and this product is not available through this site.

Best tax-free savings accounts in Canada

EQ Bank TFSA account

EQ Bank TFSA account logo

1.25%
Interest Rate
N/A
Promo Rate
$0
Min. Balance
EQ Bank is a fully online alternative to mainstream banks, so you can expect competitive rates. The EQ Bank TFSA account has one of the highest TFSA interest rates on the market, making it easier than ever to reach your savings goals. Other benefits like a $0 monthly fee, $0 minimum balance requirement and that there are help make this a great option for tax-free savings growth.
Interest Rate 1.25%
Min. Balance $0
Transaction Fee unlimited
Pros
  • One of the best interest rates on the market
  • $0 monthly fee
  • No unexpected fees
  • All your money is yours, tax-free
  • The minimum balance requirement is $0
Cons
  • Some standard banking features not available such as overdraft protection, use of ATMs and the option to have paper statements.
  • No physical branches for in-person service.
  • The tax-free maximum is $6,000 per year

Disclaimer
Please note: All information about EQ Bank TFSA account has been collected independently by Finder and this product is not available through this site.
Tax-free savings accounts (TFSA)

Best credit union savings accounts in Canada

Steinbach Credit Union Regular Savings Account

Steinbach Credit Union Regular Savings Account logo

1.55%
Interest Rate
N/A
Promo Rate
$0
Min. Balance
As a credit union, Steinbach reinvests its profits directly into the products and services it offers, so you as the customer can expect great rates. The Steinbach Credit Union Regular Savings Account is one of the best tiered interest rate savings accounts available, starting at 1.05% up to a maximum of 1.35%. The $0 monthly fee makes this an affordable savings option as well. All deposits are free, and withdrawals are $1.00 each (first monthly withdrawal is free).
Interest Rate 1.55%
Min. Balance $0
Transaction Fee deposits are free, and withdrawals are $1.00 each (first monthly withdrawal is free)
Pros
  • The minimum balance requirement is $0
  • The monthly fee is $0
  • Mobile app available for Android and iOS.
Cons
  • You can likely find more competitive interest rates from online banks.
  • The only physical branches are located in Manitoba.
  • You'll have to pay a one-time membership fee to open your first account.

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Best no-fee savings accounts in Canada

Tangerine Savings Account

0.1%
Interest Rate
2.1%
Promo Rate
$0
Min. Balance
Tangerine is one of Canada's most established, fully online banks and is known for its straightforward, fee-free banking solutions. You can manage your money conveniently through Tangerine's easy-to-use online personal banking portal.
Interest Rate 0.1%
Min. Balance $0
Transaction Fee free and unlimited
Interac e-Transfer Fee free
ATM Out of Network Fee $1.50
Pros
  • $0 monthly fee.
  • All everyday transactions are free and unlimited.
  • Supports an Automatic Savings Program for making recurring deposits into your account.
  • 24/7 customer service phone line.
Cons
  • Regular interest rate may not be as competitive as other savings account rates on this list.
  • No physical branches for in-person service.

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How we chose the best savings accounts

With so many savings accounts out there to choose from, we narrowed down the options to a list of the top accounts by considering key factors like the interest rate, how rewarding an account is in terms of growing savings and how easy it was to open. That meant digging into account details like type, annual percentage yield (APY), monthly fee, minimum deposit to open the account, minimum balance to earn interest and signup bonus.

No single savings account will be the best choice for everyone, so compare your options before picking your new account.

Why finding the best savings account is important

The primary feature of a savings account is to safely grow your money over time – an extra 1% yield on an account with a balance of $5,000 will pay out about $50 each year, which can really add up over time. And when you consider that inflation causes your money to lose up to 3% of its value each year, keeping your funds in the best savings account for your needs can help lessen the effects of inflation and protect you financially.

Calculate how much you can save

When choosing the best savings account for your financial situation, it’s important to figure out exactly how factors like your account’s interest rate can impact your savings goals. Compare different account options by using our savings account calculator below.

Best Savings Account Interest Rates

With savings accounts, you can expect interest rates anywhere from as low as 0.02% up to 2% depending on who you choose to bank with. Rates offered by Canada’s Big Banks, such as Scotiabank and BMO, range from around 0.05% and 1% while direct banking operations like EQ Bank and Tangerine offer up the best savings account interest rates to the tune 1.5%.

Savings account interest rates are often referred to as APY or APR. The APY or “Annual Percentage Yield” is the amount of money made each year on an investment due to compound interest (also called EAR or “Earned Annual Interest”). APR or “Annual Percentage Rate” is the interest rate charged during a certain time period multiplied by the number of time periods in a year.

Types of savings account interest rates

Some of the best savings accounts offer a straight forward interest rate on all the money you deposit. Other accounts come with additional interest rate features, like:

  • Tiered interest rates. These rates increase in line with the length of time you keep your money stored away, up to 360 days. The Scotiabank MomentumPLUS Savings Account is a prime example of how tiered interest rates are structured. Accountholders receive a base rate of 0.05% interest on all of their savings in this account for as long as their money is held. You’ll secure an additional premium rate at regular intervals within your first year – 0.30% at 90 days, 0.40% at 180 days, 0.50% at 270 days and 0.60% at 360 days.
  • Promo interest rates. offer introductory rates to new clients opening up an account for the first time. The Tangerine Savings Account is a great example – Tangerine offers 2.1% interest for the first 5 months after you’ve opened your account.

How are savings account interest rates determined?

Banks set and change interest rates for savings accounts based on the national prime interest rate. This rate is set mostly by the Bank of Canada as a general guide for banks to follow when they choose their interest rates for both loans and deposits. When the Bank of Canada updates the prime rate, the decision usually makes headlines and the news can help you predict whether your savings account rate might change.

The 8 different types of savings accounts

There are various types of savings accounts you can sign up for in Canada, each with a different purpose depending on your life stage or whether you’re saving for the near future or for retirement.

Check out the 8 different types of savings accounts below. When you’re zeroing in on the best savings account for you, think about your main objectives. Do you need regular access to your accounts or do you want to tuck a large chunk of money away for the future?

1. Standard Savings Accounts

Consider a standard savings account if you plan on regularly moving money between accounts, and if you prefer visiting a bricks-and-mortar bank in person. The standard savings account typically comes with a small amount of interest, and your funds aren’t locked in unlike other savings accounts, providing you with flexibility to access your cash.

Keep in mind, some banks may charge you fees for moving money in and out of this basic savings account, so look at the fine print before signing up.

2. High-Interest Savings Accounts

If yielding a high interest rate is your top priority, these are the savings accounts for you. Some high-interest savings accounts are tied to digital-only banks, so you’ll have to be comfortable with online-only banking. To secure a high-interest rate, you may have to stick to a higher minimum deposit or tight restrictions on withdrawals so pay attention to the fees and requirements you’ll need to meet before opening one of these accounts.

3. Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSA)

A tax-free savings account allows you to invest your savings in securities and withdraw your earnings without having to pay any withholding fees or taxes on your returns. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) launched the program in 2009, allowing Canadians 18 and older to shelter $6,000 each year in investments kept in a TFSA. The TFSA contribution room accumulates each year. This means that if you don’t use up your annual allotment, the amount is carried over to subsequent years.

4. Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP)

Canadians planning for retirement, whether it’s decades away or on the horizon, should look into opening a registered retirement savings plan. When you stash your savings away in an RRSP, your money is usually held in cash or placed in stocks, bonds and other securities. You can only contribute a certain amount of money to it each year (about 18% of your income), but if you don’t use your annual allocated amount, it can be rolled over to future years.

You’ll earn a “tax deferral” for every RRSP contribution you make, which allows you to save money at tax time. Make sure your RRSP savings can be socked away for the long haul – you can make withdrawals before you hit retirement age, but you’ll have to pay your regular income tax and a withdrawal tax of 10-30% on any amount you take out of your RRSP early. You can avoid paying this tax if you’re taking money out to pay for your education or your first home.

5. Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP)

If your aim is to set aside savings for your little one’s education costs later on, a registered education savings plan is a great way to help you achieve this goal. An RESP is a government-registered plan that helps you save and invest for your child’s post-secondary education. You can make deposits into the account while collecting government grant money for every year you do so. You’ll also earn tax-free interest on your savings just like you would with a TFSA and RRSP.

6. Child Savings Accounts

The vast majority of Canada’s banks offer a special savings accounts for children. These child savings accounts are opened by their parents or grandparents and they offer a good interest rate to give kids’ savings a boost. Youth savings accounts also traditionally come with educational tools to help them with their savings goals and money management.

7. Seniors Savings Accounts

Canadians heading into their golden years can take advantage of seniors’ savings accounts, which are on offer by most Canadian banks and financial institutions. Seniors savings accounts come with a string of perks, including special interest rates and reduced fees.

8. US Dollar Savings Accounts

If you have American funds you’d like to deposit while earning interest, a US dollar savings account is your best bet. Foreign currency accounts help Canadians who do business in the United States, own property there, or need access to US funds. Holding onto a US bank account is a great way to manage your Canadian and US finances in one spot. An example of this type of account is the BMO U.S. Dollar Premium Rate Savings Account.

How to choose the best savings account for your needs

Savings accounts are a great place to start growing your money, to set aside money for a rainy day or to help you achieve your financial goals. With so many options to choose from, here’s a look at what you need to consider when deciding on the best savings account for your needs:

  • Think of your savings goals. The best savings account for you will align with your savings objectives and your life stage. There are many different types of savings accounts. For example, a standard savings account or a TFSA are sound options for anyone saving up for a new home or other financial milestones.
  • Look for a high rate of return. Pay attention to the interest rate on offer, from a promotional introductory rate on your first few deposits to the standard interest you’ll collect on your cash. If you’re choosing an account for the long haul, try not to buy into a savings account with a sky-high “teaser” promotional interest rate that then drops to a lower interest rate. The best savings account interest rates are as close to 2% as possible – that way, your deposits will keep up with inflation.
  • Consider any monthly fees and additional charges. The best savings accounts on offer are free, without any monthly fees so your interest earned isn’t lost on bank charges. Look for a savings account that comes with the services you’ll need, like making deposits, withdrawals and transfers to and from other accounts, without hefty charges. Some savings accounts will offer you a number of free transactions each month. Your job is to read the fine print so you understand the terms and conditions you’ll need to follow.
  • Factor in a low opening deposit. The majority of savings accounts allow you to get started with a balance of $0, but others come with a minimum balance to unlock higher interest rates. This is an important factor to keep in mind depending on how much you can deposit into your savings account upfront, and how much money you can park there in the long run.
  • Consider access to your money. While you can easily withdraw cash from a basic savings account, others, including TFSAs and RRSPs come with some penalties if you need to pull out some of your savings. Think about whether you may need access to the funds and choose an account accordingly.
  • Look for customer service and convenience. Savings accounts are on offer by Canada’s major banks and via digital-only financial institutions. Decide if you prefer having a bricks-and-mortar site to visit if you need help or if you don’t mind relying on online banking only. For convenience’s sake, some consumers opt to open a savings account with the bank that manages their chequing account or mortgage.
  • Check on deposit insurance. The Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC) protects the money Canadian consumers deposit into bank accounts up to $100,000. Do your due diligence and double check that your financial institution is covered by CDIC insurance.

Advantages and disadvantages of savings accounts

Compare savings accounts in Canada

Once you’ve narrowed down what you’re looking for in the best savings account for your needs, you can take the next step and apply. Check out the options in the table below.

Name Product Interest Rate Promotional Interest Rate Min. Bal / Min. Deposit Account Fee
EQ Bank Savings Plus Account
1.25%
N/A
$0 / $0
$0
Enjoy zero everyday banking fees, free transactions and no minimum balance with a Savings Plus Account from EQ Bank.
Neo Financial High Interest Savings Account
1.30%
N/A
$0 / $0
$0
Get a competitive interest rate and unlimited free transactions with no monthly fees or minimum balances.
KOHO Earn Interest
1.20%
N/A
$0 / $0
$0
Opt into earning interest for free and earn 1.2% on your entire balance in KOHO plus an additional 0.5% in cash back on every purchase you make.
CI Direct Investing High Rate Savings Account
0.50%
N/A
$0 / $0
$0
With no fees and no restrictions, you'll earn 0.5% interest with the CI Direct Investing High Rate Savings Account.
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Alternatives to the best savings accounts

When interest rates are low, where can you get the best return for your money? If the best savings accounts aren’t enough or don’t fit your financial goals, there are other ways of getting the most out of your money. Consider these other ways to save:

Frequently asked questions about the best savings accounts

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