Finding the Best Savings Accounts
The best savings accounts are those which grow your money, give you the freedom to do with it as you like and don’t cost a lot to maintain. At SmartAsset, we analyzed many different savings accounts to find the top overall options, as well as others which are the best for people in specific situations.
|Synchrony Read More||0.85%||$0|| |
|Chime Read More||0.50%||$0|| |
|Axos Bank Read More||0.61%||$250|| |
|TAB Bank Read More||0.75%||$0|| |
|Discover Bank Read More||0.60%||$0|| |
|PenFed Read More||0.70%||$5|| |
|American Express National Bank, Member FDIC Read More||0.60%||$0|| |
|Varo Bank Read More||0.50%||$0|| |
|Barclays Read More||0.70%||$0|| |
|Ally Bank Read More||0.60%||$0|| |
|Marcus by Goldman Sachs Read More||0.70%||$0|| |
|Live Oak Bank Read More||0.80%||$0|| |
How We Determine the Best Savings Accounts
SmartAsset’s team of personal finance experts rounded up an exhaustive list of savings accounts at many different banks. We scored each on their APY, minimum balances, monthly fees, customer support, product offerings and customer experience. Accounts are listed in the order that their scores ranked at the time of writing.
Synchrony High Yield Savings
Synchrony Bank has one of the better savings accounts available today. Its central feature is a 0.85% APY, which is one of the higher rates on the market. There are no minimum deposit requirements with this account, making it a viable option for just about anyone. Beyond that, there are no monthly fees that will eat into your interest earnings.
Synchrony offers a rare set of features for a savings account, as it provides account holders with an ATM card and fee-free ATM access to thousands of machines throughout the U.S. and abroad. It does so through two ATM networks, Plus and Accel, giving it a more robust selection than some other online banks.
Synchrony's mobile app is also fairly highly rated, which is a benefit for any online bank. Through the app, customers can set up Touch ID and Face ID login, deposit checks remotely, live chat with a customer service representative, check their balances and more. The app is available to both Apple and Android mobile users.
Chime Savings Account
Chime is an entirely mobile-based company that offers a savings account and a checking account. The Chime Savings Account comes with a 0.50% APY, which is one of the better rates available today. The account is almost entirely fee-free, as the only fee is a $2.50 cash withdrawal fee if you initiate an out-of-network ATM or over-the-counter transaction.
Chime is billed as an all-in-one financial technology company. As a result, prospective savings account holders cannot gain access to the account unless they also open a Chime Spending Account, which is a checking account. So although there’s no minimum deposit or balance requirements for the Chime Savings Account, the real eligibility stipulation for this account is to open a Chime Spending Account.
Chime’s Apple and Android mobile apps are some of the best on the market. On the Apple app store, it has a 4.8-star out of 5 rating with more than 233,000 customer reviews, while more than 206,000 Android customers gave it an average rating of 4.6 stars out of 5.
Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by, and debit card issued by, The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC.
Axos Bank High Yield Savings
As an online-only financial institution, Axos Bank does not operate any branch locations. However, one of the benefits of Axos' web-based setup is that it can offer high interest rates. The High Yield Savings account from Axos comes with a 0.61% APY, which is a rate that will apply to balances below $25,000. To help you retain what you earn in interest, the bank does not charge any monthly maintenance fees.
A common drawback of digital banks is that funds can be difficult to access due to the inherent lack of branch locations. In this case, though, Axos Bank provides High Yield Savings Account customers with a free ATM card to make withdrawals easier.
If you're interested in opening a High Yield Savings Account with Axos, you'll need to have at least $250 ready to deposit. While this isn't an extraordinary requirement given the typically sizable nature of a savings account, it's still more than some of the other banks on this list call for.
TAB Bank High-Yield Savings Account
TAB Bank’s High-Yield Savings account offers a 0.75% APY, which is one of the better rates currently available on the market. Another point in this account’s favor: You only need to maintain a $1 balance to gain access to this rate. That’s in contrast to some accounts which require you to maintain a high minimum balance to get a top APY. There are also no monthly fees associated with this account, so every bit of interest you earn will stay in your hands.
Customers of TAB Bank manage their account balances through either its website or mobile apps. TAB has done a masterful job of creating its Apple and Android mobile offerings, as Apple and Android users have rated them at 4.7 stars and 3.9 stars out of 5, respectively. Features available via these platforms include full balance and transaction histories, inter-account and outside account money transfers, mobile check deposit and online bill pay.
Unlike some other online banks, TAB has a full range of banking products available for its customers. So if you’re interested in more than just a savings account, you can choose from a selection of checking accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs), money market accounts and other savings accounts here. For the most part, each of these TAB accounts has strong interest rates in comparison to the rest of the market and does not come with monthly fees or tough-to-meet minimums.
Discover Online Savings Account
The Discover Online Savings Account is a great option for anyone who's looking for a online bank that's easy to use and understand. Savings account holders will earn a 0.60% APY on all balances, with no restrictions. This is certainly lower than you might find at other banks, online and not, but Discover has a number of attributes that make it an attractive option. There's no minimum to open an account and there are no monthly services charges or minimum account balance requirements, as you might find at other banks. On top of that, this account compounds interest on a daily basis.
One thing to note and remember about Discover is the fact that it's an online bank with no physical presence. This may make some people uncomfortable, but if you're looking to ease your way into online banking, Discover could be a great fit. The bank is known for it's phenomenal customer service and easy-to-use interface. Discover also offers other financial products, so you can open a checking account or a new credit card all within the same platform.
PenFed Premium Online Savings Account
Pentagon Federal Credit Union, more commonly referred to as PenFed, offers an online savings option called the Premium Online Savings Account. For starters, the account has a strong 0.60% APY, which is one of the better rates on the market. There are also no monthly fees with this account.
To become an account holder, all you need to do is deposit $5 when you open your account. However, this minimalistic requirement is contingent on you already being a member of PenFed Credit Union. If you want to become a member, it helps if you are associated with the military (retired, honorably discharged or currently serving) or are employed by the U.S. government or another qualifying organization. However, if none of the above applies to you, you can become a member by belonging to certain organizations or living in eligible areas.
American Express® High Yield Savings Account
American Express®, Member FDIC, is most well-known as a credit card company, but it has some significant banking offerings as well. In fact, as of April 28, 2022, its High Yield Savings Account account boasts an annual percentage yield (APY) of 0.60%, with no minimum deposit to open the account and minimum $1 required to receive the APY. American Express does not charge a monthly fee for this account, which means everything you save will remain in your balance.
The mobile and web banking platforms at American Express are the only ways you can manage your account, as it’s a branchless, online bank. Through these mediums, you can check the balances and transaction histories of both your American Express bank and credit card accounts. You can also link up to three outside bank accounts, allowing you to seamlessly send money between them.
American Express National Bank is a savings-only financial institution. That means you can only open savings accounts and certificates of deposit (CDs), so there are no checking account offerings. If you want a checking account under the same roof as your savings account, Amex might not be a good choice.
Varo Savings Account
The Varo Savings Account is a solid option for anyone that wants to earn a solid APY if they still have minimal savings, though there are a few strings attached. You’ll earn 0.50% on all balances, which is already a very competitive rate. However, you can earn up to 5.00% APY if you meet the following criteria each qualifying period:
- Receive total direct deposits of $1,000 or more
- Keep a savings balance of $5,000 or less at the end of each business day
- Have $0 or more in your Varo accounts at the end of the qualifying period
There are some minimum balance requirements around these accounts, though. For instance, to earn the base 0.50% APY, you must keep an average close-of-business-day balance of at least $11.78 in a 31-day month or $12.17 in a 30-day month. In order to upgrade your rate to a 5.00% APY, you'll need to maintain an average close-of-business-day balance of at least $1.21 in a 31-day month or $1.25 in a 30-day month.
It’s important to note that Varo is an entirely online bank, so you won’t have the benefit of going into a physical branch. However, the account is easy to use online and has a highly rated mobile app.
The Varo Savings Account also has features that can help boost your savings. The Save Your Pay tool automatically saves a portion of your direct deposit paychecks and the Save Your Change tool automatically rounds up your purchases and saves the leftover change.
Barclays Online Savings Account
The Barclays Online Savings Account boats an impressive 0.70% APY which is somewhat unlike what we’ve seen from Barclays in the past. There’s no minimum to open an account and no minimum to earn the competitive APY. All you need to do is open an account, fund it and you’ll begin earning.
Barclays is a well-known financial institution with a number of other financial services available to its members. These include checking accounts, investment accounts, credit cards and more. There are no monthly fees and you can access your money 24/7 online. Barclays also has the benefit of providing access to brick and mortar locations for its clients if you prefer working in person. To top it all off, you’ll have access to Barclays savings assistant and other tools to help you save even more money.
Ally Bank Online Savings Account
At Ally Bank, you get a savings account with a strong interest rate and a platform that makes it easy to control your money. Ally Bank currently offers a 0.60% APY that compounds daily. But what really sets Ally apart from some of the other banks we reviewed is its customer experience. With Ally, you do not need a minimum deposit or minimum balance to open an account. You also do not have to worry about monthly maintenance or hidden fees. Further, depositing, withdrawing and sending money is simple at Ally. The bank's mobile app is easy to use and comes with 24/7 chat support if you have any issues.
You can open up a free checking account at Ally when you open your savings account and transfer money between the two. From your checking account, you can withdraw money by using an ATM or a debit card. You can make free withdrawals at any of the 55,000+ Allpoint® ATMs throughout the country.
The main downside to Ally Bank is that it is a fully online bank, so you cannot drive to your nearest Ally Bank location because they do not exist. The bank also does not accept cash deposits, so if you find yourself frequently depositing cash or visiting a brick-and-mortar bank location, banks with branches may be better for you.
Marcus Online Savings Account
Marcus by Goldman Sachs has become one of the top banks in the U.S. when it comes to savings rates, and its Online Savings Account doesn’t disappoint. The offering comes with a 0.70% APY, giving it one of the better rates right now. There's also no minimum balance necessary to get this APY, as the 0.70% rate will apply to any size balance. Marcus does have a maximum balance limit on its accounts, though it’s one few savers will hit: $1 million. The Marcus Online Savings Account has no monthly maintenance fees whatsoever.
True to its reputation as a savings-focused bank, Marcus has a number of strong certificate of deposit (CD) offerings too. The bank has CD terms that range in length from six months to six years, with great rates available for each of them. Although the savings benefits of Marcus are clear, the bank does not have any checking accounts available. So if you’d like the ability to make frequent withdrawals, you’ll have to open a checking account at a different bank.
Live Oak Bank Online Savings Account
Live Oak Bank, which has traditionally been known for its business banking and loan services, offers a top-tier consumer savings account. In fact, its Online Savings Account has a sizable 0.80% APY, which equates to $60 in annual interest earnings on a $10,000 deposit. That rate alone is a great reason to consider this account.
This savings account has no monthly service fees, which means all of your earnings should stay in your pocket. In addition, the account has no minimum opening deposit, and account holders are only required to maintain a $0.01 balance to access the 0.80% APY.
You won’t have any branch access when you open an Online Savings Account with Live Oak Bank, as it is an entirely online financial institution. Therefore, the vast majority of your account management will be done through Live Oak’s Apple and Android mobile apps and its website. Features available through these platforms include detailed histories of your account balances and past transactions, mobile check deposit, online money transfers and direct customer service. You can even link your outside bank accounts in the app so you can view all of your balances in a single place.