The best high-yield online savings accounts of 2019

Nov 16, 2019

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Your savings play an important role in helping you reach your financial goals. A well-managed, well-funded account can help to protect you during an emergency. It can also help you plan ahead for big expenses so you don’t go into debt when you need to make a large purchase.

Image by Image Source / Getty Images
(Image by Image Source/Getty Images)

There’s no question that a good savings account can help you get ahead financially. Unfortunately, many banks have a bad reputation for charging high fees and paying low interest rates. If this seems unfair to you, you’re right.

Here’s the good news. Traditional banks aren’t your only option when it comes to savings accounts. There are a number of online banks that break the mold and offer better experiences to their customers. If you’re tired of accepting the status quo from your current savings account, it might be a good time to consider alternatives.

Here’s a guide to some of my top picks for the best savings accounts.

In This Post

 

Axos High Yield Savings

Axos Bank offers a high-yield saving account that earns an APY of 1.30%. If you’re considering this option, you’ll need a minimum of $250 to open a new account.

Pros

  • Earn 1.30% APY on your account balance
  • Both savings and checking account options are available
  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • No minimum balance
  • Enjoy ATM access and ATM fee reimbursements
  • Mobile app available for iPhone and Android

Cons

  • Axos offers lower APY compared to other high-yield savings account options
  • No branches
  • Like any other savings account, federal law limits you to a maximum of six withdrawals and/or transfers per month

Although Axos doesn’t offer the highest rates among high-yield savings account providers, the account may still be a good fit for some people. If you value a higher APY than most brick-and-mortar banks provide, want to avoid fees (with no hoops to jump through to qualify for the benefit) and like the ability to have a savings and checking account at the same bank, Axos is worth considering. Axos checking accounts come with rewards-earning potential and domestic ATM reimbursements that can make a savings and checking account with the bank a nice combination.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs High-Yield Online Savings Account

Marcus offers a 1.90% APY rate on its high-yield online savings account. The company’s tagline proclaims: “Don’t just store money. Make money.”

Pros

  • Earn 1.90% APY with a balance of at least $1 or higher in your account
  • Pay no monthly service fees
  • Link to your account at another bank to transfer funds back and forth for free
  • No minimum deposit required to open an account
  • Customer service with no automated phone systems during regular business hours

Cons

  • No ATM card
  • No mobile app
  • No physical bank branches
  • No customer service chat
  • Customer service phone support isn’t available 24 hours a day

This account may be best for people who wish to earn competitive APY rates on their savings account balance. However, people who need ATM access or physical branches with face-to-face banking may not be happy with Marcus by Goldman Sachs for their savings account.

State Farm Bank Money Market Savings Account

If you’re interested in earning better interest rates on your money, another high-APY savings account to consider is State Farm’s money market savings account. The bank currently offers a 2.00% APY for the first 12 months after you open a new consumer money market savings account.

Pros

  • Earn 2.00% APY on your account balance
  • Write checks, transfer funds, and/or withdraw money from your account
  • The $10 monthly fee on the account will be waived if you maintain a minimum average daily balance of $500 or more
  • No minimum balance fee charged if you use direct deposit
  • ATM fees are reimbursed 100% (provided you have a direct deposit via ACH credited to your account during each statement cycle)

Cons

  • Minimum opening balance of $1,000 is required
  • Once the 12 month introductory period ends, you’ll earn the lower “standard” APY rate unless you sign up for a qualified checking account and meet certain requirements ($2,500 daily balance or 10 withdrawal transactions per month)
  • There are no physical bank branches
  • You’ll be charged a monthly fee if your minimum average balance falls below $500

This account may be best for people who appreciate competitive interest rates on their savings account balance. Also, people who frequently use ATMs can continue to do so without paying fees.

Ally Bank

Another popular online savings account option you might want to take a look at is offered by Ally Bank. It offers a high APY, no monthly fees and ATM access.

Pros

  • Earn 1.80% APY on your savings account balance
  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance is required to open or maintain the account
  • Access more than 43,000 ATMs free of charge
  • Receive reimbursement for up to $10 in out-of-network ATM fees each month
  • The account comes with a checkbook
  • Chat, phone, and email customer service support available 24/7

Cons

  • No option to deposit cash
  • You can find slightly higher APYs elsewhere

This account may be best for people who enjoy no monthly fees without having to jump through any hoops. Additionally, the ability to write checks and access your money easily through an ATM may be a selling point to anyone who values these features.

CIT Bank Savings Builder Account

For people who value a high APY above all else, CIT Bank offers an interest rate that’s hard to beat. As an online bank with lower costs than traditional banks, it passes on a portion of the money it saves on overhead to its customers.

Pros

  • CIT’s Savings Builder account offers a high 2.10% APY, making it one of the most competitive savings account interest rates available
  • Mobile app is available on Apple and Android devices
  • No monthly fees are required to maintain the account
  • No account opening fees
  • No fees for online transfers

Cons

  • The impressive 2.10% APY comes with some strings attached (make a single deposit of at least $100 or more per month or maintain a balance of at least $25,000 to earn that high APY)
  • A minimum of $100 required to open the account
  • CIT Bank does not offer a companion checking account

This account might be best for people who want a free savings account that earns exceptionally high interest on their balances.

Capital One 360 Savings Account

If you’re a fan of high-tech banking, Capital One might be a great fit for you. The bank’s robust app allows you to set savings goals, track your progress and manage your account in ways that many other banks listed here do not.

Pros

  • Earn 1.90% APY on your savings account balance
  • Has a top-rated mobile app that lets you deposit checks remotely
  • No monthly account fees
  • No minimum balance requirement to open or maintain your account
  • Transfer funds free of charge
  • Automatic savings plans
  • Open up to 25 savings accounts to separate your savings goals
  • Deposit cash or checks at a Capital One branch

Cons

  • Although Capital One does offer some in-person branches, locations are limited
  • No debit or ATM cards available
  • You might earn a higher APY with another financial company
  • Four-day hold on checks deposited or transfers into your account that are initiated by Capital One

People who want to open multiple accounts at the same bank to separate their savings goals are in luck with this account. Also, with a 1% APY the account still offers a rate that outshines most traditional banks. If you’re a Capital One Bank fan but you’re interested in earning a higher APY, you can always check out the bank’s 360 Money Market Account, which offers interest rates of up to 2%.

How do you choose the best?

Depending on who you ask, you might find a dozen different answers to the question, “Which savings account is best?” However, the question you really should be asking is: “Which savings account is best for me?”

Many of the alternative saving accounts listed here offer higher interest rates than traditional banks. They may also lack services like access to ATMs and branches. Still, some have impressive mobile banking apps and other features you might appreciate.

If you’re trying to choose the best savings account for you, try this approach. Write down the features that are the most important to you; then compare what’s available.

Whether you’re interested in higher interest rates, superior customer service, no fees, convenient mobile-app capability or something else, you’ll likely find a bank that can give you what you value most.

The information for these offers has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The banking details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the account issuers.

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