Other features to look for
While a strong interest rate is the first thing to look at, it’s not the only feature to note. You will also want to make sure you choose the best range of Australian savings account to compare and make sure they have features that will help you save. These can include:
- Withdrawal penalties - It’s likely that you’ll need to keep your savings account separate to any withdrawals you make. That is, this won’t be the account from which you pay the bills, make EFTPOS transactions or withdraw cash at the ATM. Many savings accounts have penalties in interest rates if you withdraw money, encouraging you instead to deposit a minimum amount each month in order to attract higher interest rates.
- Fees - It’s also worth checking that the best savings account won’t have any ongoing account-keeping fees, and will make it easy for you to transfer money (or set up a direct debit at each pay cycle) from whichever account your wage is made into.
- Free monthly statements - These are also a good feature to help you keep track of your savings and get excited about your money growing each month.
- Introductory rate - Some savings accounts have a honeymoon or introductory interest rate. This higher rate will then go down to a standard rate after that initial period, so look closely to see what the ongoing rate is.
- Minimum amounts - If your savings are starting small, you’ll also need to check that the savings account you’re considering doesn’t have a minimum deposit amount.
- Sign on deals - Lots of savings accounts have higher interest rates when you meet certain conditions. For example, if you deposit a minimum amount each month and don’t make any withdrawals, your interest will increase. Finding a savings account with conditions that you can meet in order to earn this bonus interest will help you reach your financial goals faster.
- Compound interest - It’s also possible to get a savings account that provides compound interest (interest on your interest as well as on the initial principal), which will give your account balance a nice boost.
There are lots of comparison websites where you can compare transaction accounts, their fees and interest rates. This can give you an idea of what each account offers, however Money Smart recommends going directly to suppliers for more details when you’re doing a comparison.
Australian Unity's high interest savings accounts are a wonderful way to save towards your next financial goal.