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Choosing a savings account

Fees, features and interest rates vary from account to account. Shop around and compare before you choose an account.

3 types of savings accounts

1. Regular savings accounts

  • You earn a small amount of interest.
  • You can get your money quickly and easily.
  • There are often no fees.

2. Combined chequing and savings accounts

  • You earn a small amount of interest – usually less than in a regular savings account but more than in a chequing account.
  • You can get your money quickly and easily.
  • You can write cheques. But you will often pay higher fees for writing them.

3. High-interest rate savings accounts

  • You earn a greater amount of interest than in other types of savings accounts.
  • You usually have to put in a certain amount (a minimum deposit).
  • You won't get cheques or bank books.
  • It may take longer to get your money out if it's an online bank.

 5 common account features

  1. Direct deposit – Your employer may be able to deposit your pay into your account.
  2. Pre-authorized debits (PADs) – Transfer money from your account automatically each month to pay bills or to save and invest.
  3. Debit card – Use it to pay for items or get cash when you shop in a store that displays the “Interac” logo. The money is taken out of your bank account.
  4. Bank machine/automated teller machine (ATM) access – Use your debit card at bank machines to make deposits, pay bills, move money between your accounts and get cash.
  5. Telephone banking and Internet banking – Contact your bank’s customer service centre and arrange a password to use these services.

Compare interest rates

Shop around and compare interest rates before you choose a savings account. Rates vary from account to account, and can change often. Use this Savings Account Selector Tool to compare savings accounts across Canada.

Other options for short-term savings

Learn more about other short-term savings options. Read Raymond's story and Linda's story to find out about where they decided to put their savings.

 

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