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High interest savings accounts

Explore the high interest options available to you in the Netherlands.

A high interest savings account can help you grow your wealth quicker by giving you a competitive earn rate for your savings. This is a great way for you to meet your financial goals, whether you’re saving for a house, a car or just to build your wealth.

This guide will cover how high interest savings accounts work in the Netherlands, including tips and traps for you to consider.

Disclaimer: Rates in Europe are currently quite low, averaging 0.1%. This article will define high interest as anything above that rate for the time being until rates improve.

What is a high interest savings account?

In accordance with its name, a high interest savings account offers a high interest rate. You might need to fulfil certain criteria in order to qualify for the higher interest rate, which might come in the form of a minimum monthly deposit or a lock-up period where you are unable to withdraw any funds.

Apart from this, high interest savings account work just like a regular savings account. You deposit money and earn interest on that money. You’re able to withdraw the money at any time.

How does a high interest savings account work?

There are three things you should take note of with high interest savings accounts: how you can access your money, how the interest will be credited and how you can qualify for the higher interest rate.

How you access your savings

It is important to find out the conditions regarding accessing the savings account in advance. For the highest interest savings accounts in the Netherlands, you generally can’t your money money for a certain period of time. So, if you want to profit from the high interest, you can’t withdraw money in the meantime. Sometimes it is possible to withdraw money, but then you are no longer entitled to receive the high interest rate or you pay a fine on the amount withdrawn.

How you earn interest

Each high interest savings account comes with a base interest rate. Once you’ve qualified for the higher tier of interest, your account will be credited with the interest on a monthly basis. Over time, the additional interest that you have will multiply thanks to the compound interest that is calculated daily and paid monthly.

Here’s a quick example of how compound interest works: if your initial balance was €10,000 and the interest rate was 1%, you would have earned an extra €100 that year. In the following year, assuming that you’ve not withdrawn any cash from the account, you will be earning 1% on the €10,100 which will be slightly more than the €100 you earned last year. Essentially, you can keep making more money over time without even depositing additional funds into your account.

What conditions you need to meet

As mentioned earlier, you may need to meet certain criteria in order to qualify for a higher tier of interest. While the conditions can differ depending on your banking provider, there could either be a six month or one-year term in which no withdrawals should be made. Some providers require you to fund your account with a set amount of money on a monthly basis. Others might even request that you make a set amount of purchases using your debit card.

Get in touch with your provider to understand the terms and conditions involved before signing up for an account. Compare the spending terms with the interest rates on offer to make sure that you’re getting a good deal.

High interest savings accounts in the Netherlands

Due to the lower interest rates currently offered throughout Europe, most Netherlands high interest accounts do not work like standard high interest accounts. For example, most of these accounts do not come with monthly or yearly spending requirements other than the specific criteria you might need to meet to open the account.

Here are some of the high interest savings accounts available in the Netherlands:

  • BigBank Flexibel Sparen. With an interest rate of 0.20%, this online savings account is convenient to use and completely free to sign up for.
  • Lloyds Bank Internet Spaarrekening. This account has one of the highest interest rates in the Netherlands at 0.30% and offers an account registration process of just five minutes.
  • Openbank Open Spaarrekening. The Open Spaarrekening will reward you with 0.20% on your savings annually, with your deposit’s security guaranteed by Spanish regulators. For the first six months, first-time clients of Openbank will receive an impressive 2% interest rate.
  • ASN Jeugdsparen. An account only available only to youth under the age of 18, the Jeugdsparen comes with a variable rate of 0.40%, one of the highest on the market.
  • NIBC Direct Internet Spaarrekening. Accessible via a mobile app or web browser, this free internet savings account comes with an interest rate of 0.15%.

Benefits of a high interest savings account

  • Faster savings growth. With high interest savings accounts, the most obvious benefit is the additional interest that you’ll be earning. Especially considering the low interest environment in the Netherlands right now, every additional bit of interest will go a long way in beating inflation.
  • Security. Since the Netherlands is part of the European Union, your high interest savings account does not necessarily have to be offered by a Dutch bank. Depending on your banking provider, the respective government agency will protect your savings through its national guarantee scheme. Terms and conditions might differ from country to country, but your deposits will generally be safe.
  • Easy access. With a standard savings account you can withdraw money from your account any time you want to. Most savings accounts are linked to a standard bank account that also come with a debit card for even more convenient spending. Unlike term deposits, your money will always be accessible to you. Even if you have minimum holding requirements, you can always withdraw your money during an emergency with the only consequence being you forfeiting your interest bonus.

Tips and traps of high interest savings accounts

Make use of these tips and watch out for the following traps so that you can get the most out of your account.

Tips

  • Change accounts when necessary. Most of the high interest savings accounts in the Netherlands offer variable interest rates, which can change over time. If you want the highest rate, don’t hesitate to switch out your savings account for another if a better option is available.
  • Compare accounts regularly. Since the interest rates can change at any time, you should subscribe to different banks’ mailing lists and keep a close eye on changing rates.

Traps

  • Introductory offers are temporary. If you opt for a high interest savings account to take advantage of an attractive introductory rate, keep in mind that this rate will eventually drop. Consider setting a reminder to compare accounts and look for a better alternative well before the introductory period ends.
  • Account conditions. If you’re struggling just to meet the conditions of the account, you might want to rethink your choice of savings account. For example, some accounts may require you to regularly deposit a significant sum every month, which could be difficult if your income source is irregular.

How can I sign up for a high interest savings account?

You can open a high interest savings account online in a few minutes. Visit your bank’s website and fill up the “sign up” form. You’ll usually be asked to provide the following:

  • Your BSN (Burgerservicenummer)
  • Documents to verify your identity (either passport or identity card)
  • Proof of your residency within the EU or a valid residency permit

Once you’ve finished the application form and the bank has verified your identity, your account will be approved. Following this, you can deposit money into your account and begin earning interest.

Bottom Line

High interest savings accounts are useful tools to help you grow your wealth without taking significant financial risks. While interest rates are relatively low in the Netherlands, keep an eye out for changing rates and pick a high interest savings account that meets your savings goals best.

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