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The best high-interest savings accounts in Canada

To the point If you're looking to maximize the return on your savings, a high-interest savings account is the ideal choice for you. Interest rates are currently around 5%, with attractive welcome offers for new customers.

What is a high-interest savings account?

A high-interest savings account (HISA) is a bank account that offers a higher interest rate than the norm. This product is often chosen by those who are looking at medium-term savings and require a higher interest rate to achieve their financial goals.

Of course, the ideal is to let your savings grow for as long as possible in a savings account offering the best interest rate.

piggy bank save money chequing account

Canadian chartered banks, cooperatives and insurance companies offer high-interest savings accounts. You can open a HISA with a financial institution even if you don’t do your day-to-day banking there.

The vast majority of HISA are free, with no monthly fees. However, accounts from the Big Five banks often charge a fee per transaction, which is not the case with digital banks.

Interest earned in a high-interest savings account is taxable. You’ll receive tax slips at the end of the year, and you’ll need to report your earnings on your income tax return.

The best high-interest savings accounts in Canada

There are a multitude of high-interest savings accounts offered by almost every Canadian bank, including BMO, National Bank, CIBC, Desjardins, RBC, Scotia, TD and Laurentian Bank.

Meanwhile, digital banks such as Achieva Financial, Alterna, EQ Bank, KOHO, Motusbank, Neo Financial, Oaken Financial, Tangerine and Wealthsimple also offer HISA.

Milesopedia has taken a look at all the offers currently available on the market. Compare the offers in the table below and find all the details in the following sections.

Financial institution Account name Annual Interest Rate
Scotiabank Momentum Savings PLUS Up to 6.05%
Tangerine Savings Up to 6%
CIBC eAdvantage Savings Up to 5.75%
Wealthsimple Cash Up to 5.50%
BMO Savings Amplifier Up to 5.50%
RBC High Interest eSavings Up to 5.50%
KOHO Savings Up to 5%
EQ Bank Personal (formerly Savings Plus) Up to 4%
Neo High-Interest Savings Up to 4%
Laurentian Bank High-Interest Savings Up to 4%

High Interest Savings Account - Scotiabank

Scotiabank currently has an attractive offer for its MomentumPLUS savings account. Specifically, it gives you access to a savings rate of up to 6.05% for a three-month period on new deposits. Thereafter, you will receive the regular interest rate of 1.30%.

scotia-epargne-momentum-mars-2024-fr

The main features of this account :

  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance required
  • Automatic Savings Plan
  • Unlimited transfers between accounts
  • Virtual check deposit

The special offer of the MomentumPLUS savings account allows you to make your money grow with an interest rate of up to 6.05%.In addition to the base rate of 1.30%, add :

  • Premium period interest rate :
    • 90 days: 0.85%
    • 180 days: 0.90%
    • 270 days: 1%.
    • 360 days: 1.25%
  • Interest rate increase according to bank package :
  • Promotional interest rate: additional 3.40% more for the first three months

Terms and conditions apply. To learn more about the Scotiabank Savings Account or to apply, click here.

High-Interest Savings Account - Tangerine

The Tangerine Savings account is one of the best savings accounts in Canada. First of all, there are no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements. What’s more, you can open accounts in both Canadian and U.S. dollars.

Tangerine Bank is currently offering cash back of up to $500 and a savings rate of 5.75% for 5 months. Thereafter, you’ll receive the regular interest rate of 0.70%.

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Key features:

  • 0.7% interest rate on all deposits
  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance
  • Automatic Savings Program (ASP)
  • Free access to 3,500 Scotiabank ATMs
  • Offers additional savings products such as TFSAs and RRSPs
  • Available in Canadian and U.S. dollars

The special offer allows new customers who open a Tangerine savings account to earn up to $500 cash back and a 5.75% savings rate for 5 months as follows:

  • Up to $400 cash back on eligible online transactions. Specifically, you’ll earn 20% cash back on eligible Visa Debit transactions on online or app purchases for 60 days (up to $400) ;
  • A promotional savings rate of 5.75% on savings accounts, TFSAs and RSPs for 5 months, on a maximum of $1,000,000 in deposits;
  • A $100 bonus when you set up automatic transfers of at least $50 from your new chequing account to your new savings account for two consecutive months.

Terms and conditions apply. To find out more about the Tangerine savings account or to apply for one, click here.

High-Interest Savings Account - Wealthsimple

Wealthsimple’s chequing account also acts as a high-interest savings account.

The interest rate offered on the Wealthsimple Cash account varies between 4% and 5% annually. All customers receive a minimum of 4% interest, then qualify for higher rates depending on their assets under management in all their Wealthsimple accounts combined:

ws-cash-interets-fr

In addition, the interest rate is increased by 0.5% (up to a total rate of 5%) if you choose Wealthsimple Cash as your direct deposit account.

The main features of the account :

  • No monthly fees or transaction charges;
  • No minimum balance required ;
  • Send Interac transfers and pay bills ;
  • Base interest rate of 4% ;
  • 1% cash back on all purchases.

Terms and conditions apply. To find out more about the Wealthsimple Cash account or to apply, click here.

High Interest Savings Account - Bank of Montreal (BMO)

Currently, the BMO Savings Amplifier account allows you to earn up to 5.50% interest. What’s more, by combining this offer with the BMO Performance Chequing Account or the BMO Privilege Chequing Account, you can earn up to $600 in welcome bonuses.

02. BMO EN

Key features:

  • Savings account with no monthly fees
  • No minimum balance required
  • Free transfers to your other BMO accounts
  • 5.50% promotional interest rate

The welcome bonus of up to $600 is obtained as follows:

  • Get $350 when you open a BMO Performance or BMO Privilege chequing account and make a deposit of any amount by July 2, 2024;
  • Get $200 when you open a Savings Amplifier account, make a deposit of $10,000 or more by July 2, 2024, and maintain this balance at all times until September 30, 2024;
  • Earn an extra $50 when you invite a family member as part of a BMO Family Bundle and have them open their account by July 2, 2024.

Thespecial offer with the BMO Savings Amplifier account allows you to earn up to 5.50% interest until June 30, 2024:

  • Bank’s official interest rate of 1.90% combined with ;
  • Promotional rate of 3.60% until June 30, 2024.

Terms and conditions apply. To learn more about the BMO Savings Amplifier account or to apply, click here.

High-Interest Savings Account - KOHO

KOHO is another digital bank offering a high-interest savings account. Rates vary between 3% and 5%, depending on the package chosen. With the free package, you earn 3% interest on your savings. With paid packages (from $4 to $19 per month), rates are 5%.

koho-epargne-fr

The main features of the KOHO savings account are :

  • No monthly fee;
  • No fees for Interac transactions and transfers;
  • Free unlimited ATM withdrawals ;
  • Interest rate 3% ;
  • 1% cash back on groceries and transportation.

Terms and conditions apply. To find out more about the KOHO savings account or to apply, click here.

High-Interest Savings Account - EQ Bank

The EQ Bank High-Interest Savings account works differently from traditional savings accounts.

The Personal Account (formerly the Savings Plus account) operates like a chequing account, but earns interest like a savings account. In fact, the current interest rate can be as high as 4% for money deposited in the account.

What’s more, the savings account has no monthly fees, no minimum balance and unlimited free transactions on everyday banking services (bill payments, Interac transfers and electronic funds transfers).

banque-eq-epargne-fr

Key features:

  • No service charge for day-to-day operations
  • No monthly fees
  • Free Interac transfers
  • Free bill payments
  • Free electronic funds transfers
  • No minimum balance required

The EQ Bank Current Account allows you to earn up to 4% interest on your balance as follows:

  • Get 2.50% as base interest rate;
  • Earn 1.50% bonus interest when you set up direct deposit of your payroll.

Terms and conditions apply. To find out more about the EQ Bank Savings Plus Account, click here. To subscribe to this account, click here.

Terms and conditions apply. To find out more about the EQ Bank Current Account or to subscribe, click here.

High-Interest Savings Account - Neo

Neo Financial is a Winnipeg-based Canadian financial institution specializing in savings and credit products.

Neo is an alternative to the Big Five Canadian banks (BMO, CIBC, RBC, Scotia and TD). It’s 100% digital, and includes the ability to buy, save and earn rewards with their no-fee credit cards and high-interest savings account.

Currently, you benefit from a non-promotional interest rate of 4% on your entire account balance. What’s more, Neo’s High Interest Savings Account requires no minimum deposit and no monthly fees.

To open a high-interest savings account with Neo, you must be over 13 years of age (14 in Quebec).

04. Neo EN

Key features:

  • Earn 4% interest on your entire account balance;
  • No monthly fee;
  • No minimum balance required;
  • Open up to 10 accounts for all your savings goals.

Terms and conditions apply. To find out more about the Neo Savings Account or to apply, click here.

High-Interest Savings Account - Laurentian Bank

Laurentian Bank currently has an attractive offer for its High Interest Savings Account (HISA). More specifically, it gives you access to an interest rate of up to 4%.

Laurentian Bank

The main features of the account :

  • No management fees (fees may apply for certain transactions)
  • No minimum balance required
  • Simplified savings with the periodic savings plan
  • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance (up to $100,000 per category of deposit insurance)
  • Access to funds whenever you need them

Special offer: The Laurentian Bank High Interest Savings Account (HISA) allows you to make your money grow with an interest rate of up to 4%. Specifically:

  • Receive 3% interest on any amount under $100,000;
  • Receive 4% interest on any amount between $100,000 and $5,000,000;
  • Receive 1% interest on any amount over $5,000,000.

Terms and conditions apply. To learn more about the Laurentian Bank High Interest Savings Account or to apply, click here.

The benefits of owning a high interest savings account

The high-interest savings account offers a higher return on your balance, as the name suggests. However, additional benefits often come from the bank’s promotional offers, such as high interest rates for a limited period or under certain conditions, such as a minimum balance requirement.

That’s why it’s essential to select an account based on your usual savings and banking habits, rather than simply opting for the account offering the highest interest rate.

For people with flawless financial management and an excellent credit score, it’s possible to take advantage of high interest rates and credit card cash advances to generate passive income. Learn more in this guide:

How to open a savings account

Once you’ve chosen the high-interest savings account that’s right for you, be sure to check the minimum income and deposit requirements carefully.

The account can usually be opened in a few minutes via online banking or a mobile application, depending on the bank chosen.

To open a HISA, you’ll need a Social Insurance Number (SIN), as tax slips are issued every year.

Then you can transfer funds easily from your online account or the mobile application.

If necessary, you can also make an appointment with a bank advisor to open the account in person.

How to calculate interest on a savings account

Financial institutions calculate interest rates differently according to their own criteria. It is therefore important to look at this detail. Some will pay interest into the savings account, considering :

  • Daily balance
  • New deposits to the account from a specific date
  • Part of the balance, above a certain amount or below a maximum amount

Finally, interest can be compounded. You’ll earn more interest with an interest rate compounded daily than monthly.

For example, by combining the BMO Performance Chequing Account with the Savings Booster Account, you can earn up to $600 in welcome bonuses. What’s more, you’ll enjoy a promotional interest rate of 5. 50% on balances deposited in a Savings Builder Account for up to 120 days after the account opening date. Interest is calculated on the daily closing balance, up to a maximum balance of $1,000,000, and paid on the last business day of the month.

Bottom Line

In short, a high-interest savings account lets you save for short- and medium-term projects. What’s more, a high-interest savings account is an ideal type of account for holding your emergency fund, also known as a contingency fund. With the high rate since 2023, you can get interest rates of around 5% with most financial institutions in Canada.

To help you in your search for a bank account and savings account that meet your needs and savings goals, you can use our bank account comparator.

Finally, discover our strategies for managing personal finances in Canada.

High Interest Savings Account - Frequently asked questions

How can I compare savings accounts with Milesopedia?

To compare savings accounts on Milesopedia, you can use the bank account comparator, read the summary of the best offers or visit the “personal finance” section of the Milesopedia website.

What's the difference between a savings account and a high-interest savings account?

As the name suggests, a high-interest savings account is a type of savings account that offers a higher interest rate than a standard savings account. Not all financial institutions offer their customers a high-interest savings account. You can open a high-interest savings account with a chartered bank or credit union even if you have a chequing account with another financial institution. Finally, note that there are many high-interest savings accounts with no monthly fees or transaction charges, such as the Tangerine savings account.

Which banks offer high-interest savings accounts in Canada?

Most Canadian chartered banks offer high-interest savings accounts. Other types of financial institutions also do this, such as credit unions, insurance companies and trusts.

Which bank offers the best interest rate?

Some Canadian banks focus on high non-promotional interest rates, while others regularly offer promotional interest rates. For example, EQ Bank currently offers an interest rate of 4% on everyday banking services. For its part, Banque Tangerine is currently offering a promotional interest rate of 5. 50% on its savings account for the first 5 months.

Is there a risk of losing my money deposited in a savings account?

No. Eligible deposits, such as chequing and savings accounts, are covered by CDIC up to a maximum of $100,000 per category of deposit insurance: individual, joint, TFSA, FHSA, RRSP, RESP, etc. To find out more, visit the SADC website.

High-interest savings account or TFSA: which one to choose?

Although a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) includes the word “savings account”, it is generally more advantageous for long-term investing. In particular, in company shares or exchange-traded funds. That said, if you have unused contribution room in your TFSA, you can use this type of account for savings, such as an emergency fund. In this way, interest income received in the savings account is not taxed. To learn more, read the following guide: The Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA).

Which savings account pays the highest interest?

As a rule, high-interest savings accounts earn more than standard savings accounts. In addition, some banks offer promotional interest rate deals, such as Banque Tangerine with an offer of 5.75% interest for 5 months on your savings account and Scotiabank with a 6.05% interest rate on Momentum Plus savings account for 3 months.

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