Best High Interest Savings Account In Canada (Aug 2021)

This is post contains a list of the best high interest savings account (HISA) in Canada for 2021. If you’re tired of the measly 0.01% – 0.05% savings rate on big banks’ regular savings account, you should consider one of the offerings below.

We’ll start off with a ranking of the banks by their HISA rates, then a short profile and the key features of their savings account.

Best Savings Interest Rates (Non-registered accounts)

You can get the highest high savings interest rates from the banks and credit unions in the table below:

Financial InstitutionHISA Rate (%)Deposit Insurance
Canadian Tire Bank1.55CDIC
Saven Financial1.55FSRAO
Neo Financial1.30FSRAO
Implicity Financial1.30DGCM
EQ Bank1.25CDIC
WealthOne1.25CDIC
Motive Financial1.25CDIC
Hubert Financial1.25DGCM
Bridgewater Bank1.20CDIC
AcceleRate Financial1.20DGCM
Achieva Financial1.20DGCM
LBC Digital1.15CDIC
Oaken Financial1.15CDIC
Peoples Trust1.15CDIC
Outlook Financial1.10DGCM
Steinbach Credit Union1.05DGCM
Ideal Savings1.01DGCM
Maxa Financial1.00DGCM
Alterna Bank1.00FSRAO
Motusbank1.00CDIC

Parama Credit Union also offers a 1.0% high interest savings account.

Note: You can still get 1.50% on TFSA and RRSP savings account from WealthOne Bank.

The table only covers banks with at least 1.0% HISA rates. There are several other credit unions and banks with rates below 1% or that offers higher rates for high amounts.

For example, Entegra Credit Union has a tiered savings rate that starts at 0.50% for balances below $10,000. The rate goes to 0.70% for $10,001 to $100,000 and up to 1.10% for balances above $250,000.

Also, Tangerine has a promotional rate of 2.10% for the first 5 months for new clients.

Check here for the Best TFSA High Interest Savings Account Rates.

list of the top high-interest savings accounts in Canada

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Best High Interest Savings Accounts in Canada

The ranking above is based on just the interest rates on offer at each bank. But there are other factors you should consider because the account with the highest interest rate is not necessarily the best one.

Account opening process, minimum balance, transaction charges, monthly fees, website user experience and the overall customer service are some of the other things to consider.

Luckily, many of the savings account offerings at the banks below have no monthly maintenance fees. However, watch out for fees for withdrawals, Interac e-transfers and so on.

With that out of the way, here is a short profile on some of the best high-interest savings accounts in Canada.


Canadian Tire Bank Savings

Canadian Tire Bank has the highest savings rate in this ranking with a very impressive 1.55% interest rate.

However, a big drawback with the account is the account opening process. It is painfully slow! It is not unusual for a new account to take more than a month. After completing the online form, an instruction package will be mailed to you and you’ll need to mail your cheque in.

All of these add up to days or months in some cases. Compare this to a day or two at other online banks.

Plus the website looks like it was last updated a decade ago. But if you can look beyond these cons, you’ll get an account with:

  • A competitive savings rate
  • No monthly fees and no minimum balance

Registered accounts: TFSA

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.55%

Related Post: Canadian Tire TFSA Review


EQ Bank Savings Plus

EQ Bank is one of Canada’s most popular high interest savings account providers. It has consistently offered a non-promotional competitive rate with no-fee banking.

The EQ Bank Savings Plus account is a hybrid account with the features of a chequing and savings account, so it’s perfect for everyday banking. With no fees for debit transactions, you can use the account for bill payments, send Interac e-transfers and so on:

Other features include:

  • No minimum balance and no monthly fee
  • Free unlimited debit transactions (bill payments, Interac, EFTs etc)
  • Joint accounts

Registered accounts: TFSA and RRSP (Current rate of 2.30% till May 26, 2021)

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.25%

Learn more:


Motive Financial Savings

Motive financial is a division of Canadian Western Bank, a CDIC-insured Schedule I bank. The bank has 2 savings account variants:

  • Motive Savings Account (0.75%): Free unlimited monthly withdrawals but Interac costs $1 and withdrawals at non-Exchange Network ATMs cost $1.50
  • Motive Savvy Saving Account (1.25%): More restrictive but you get an higher rate in return

Here are the key features of the Motive Savvy Savings account:

  • No minimum balance and no monthly fee
  • 2 free withdrawals monthly ($5 afterwards)
  • Interac e-Transfer fee of $1

While the account offers a competitive savings rate, it is not suitable for your everyday banking needs. If you need to carry out regular debit transfers, you’re better off going with other banks with free unlimited transactions.

Registered accounts: TFSA and RRSP

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.25%


Bridgewater Bank Savings

If you’ve not heard about Bridgewater Bank, you’re not alone. Bridgewater is a Schedule I chartered bank that was established in 1997. It is a subsidiary of the Alberta Motor Association and currently serves over 36,000 customers across Canada except Quebec.

As a federally regulated financial institution, Bridgewater Bank is a CDIC member. So your deposits are guaranteed up to $100,000.

Key Features:

  • One free withdrawal per month, $5 afterwards
  • Initial deposit requirement of $25
  • Joint accounts are available

Registered accounts: Not available

HISA Interest Rate: 1.20%


Neo Financial Savings

Neo Financial was launched last year with a high-interest savings account and a cash-back credit card. Deposits are held through Concentra, a CDIC member.

Some features are still lacking or under development such as mobile cheque deposit, internet banking and so on. It is available across Canada (Quebec is coming soon).

Registered accounts: Not available

HISA Interest Rate: 1.30%

Read More: Neo Financial Savings Account Review


Saven Financial High Interest Savings Account

Another recently launched online bank, Saven Financial is the virtual division of FirstOntario, one of the largest credit unions in Ontario.

At the moment, the bank only offers GIC and High-interest savings account to Ontario residents.

Key Features:

  • No monthly fees or transaction charges
  • No minimum balance required
  • Deposit protection up to $250,000 through FSRA

Registered accounts: Not available

Savings Interest Rate: 1.55%

Read More: Saven Financial Review


WealthOne Bank of Canada Savings

WealthOne Bank is a Schedule I bank that was setup in 2016 to serve the Chinese community. It operates virtually but also has retail locations in GTA, Ontario and Vancouver, British Columbia.

Deposit guarantee is provided through CDIC.

Key Features:

  • No monthly fees and no minimum opening balance
  • Free unlimited transactions between the account and your linked account
  • Ten free bill payment transactions per month, $5 afterwards
  • Interac e-Transfer®: Free to receive but $1.50 to send

Registered accounts: TFSA, RRSP and RRIF

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.25%


LBC Digital High Interest Saving Account

The bank is a virtual division of the Laurentian Bank financial group.  Laurentian Bank is one of the oldest banks in Canada. It is a Schedule 1 bank that was founded back in 1846 and has been serving Canadians for more than 175 years.

The interest rate on its LBC Digital High Interest Saving Account is tiered. You’ll earn 1.30% for balances up to $500,000 and 0.30% after.

Key Features:

  • No monthly fees and no minimum opening balance
  • Free unlimited transactions between the account and your linked account
  • Ten free bill payment transactions per month, $5 afterwards
  • Interac e-Transfer®: Free to receive but $1.50 to send

Registered Accounts: Not available

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.15%

Read More: LBC Digital Bank Review


Peoples Trust Savings

Peoples Trust is a member of Peoples Group, a financial services company that has been serving Canadians since 1985. It has its headquarters in Vancouver, BC but serves clients across Canada.

You get a competitive interest rate through its high-interest savings account product, Peoples Choice e-Savings.

Key Features:

  • No monthly fees and no minimum opening balance
  • Transfer to/from your HISA and linked accounts
  • Transaction charges: Bill payments: $0.50; Interac e-Transfer Send: $1
  • Deposit protection through CDIC

Registered Accounts: TFSA

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.15%

Read More: Peoples Trust Review


Steinbach Credit Union Regular Savings

Steinbach is one of Canada’s largest credit union and Manitoba’s largest. It currently serves over 90,000 members with over $6 billion in assets.

It has 4 savings account variants, but its flagship account is the Regular Savings account with a tiered interest rate starting at 1.05%.

Key Features:

  • No monthly fees and no minimum opening balance
  • Tiered savings interest rate up to 1.40% for balances above $250,000
  • First monthly withdrawal is free but fees apply afterwards
  • Interest calculated monthly but paid annually
  • 100% deposit protection through DGCM

Registered Accounts: RESP, RRSP, RRIF and TFSA

Savings Account Base Rate: 1.05% for $100,000 and below


Oaken Savings Account

Oaken Financial is a CDIC-insured virtual bank and a trademark of Home Bank, a subsidiary of Home Trust company.

Through its Oaken Savings account, the bank offers one of the best no-fees high-interest savings account in Canada.

Key Features:

  • No monthly fees
  • Unlimited free transactions
  • No minimum opening balance
  • Choose between Home Bank and Home Trust as the issuer of your account
  • Deposit guarantee from CDIC

Registered Accounts: RESP, RRSP, RRIF and TFSA

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 1.15%


Wealthsimple Cash

Wealthsimple Cash is a high interest savings account from Canada’s most popular robo-advisor, Wealthsimple. It is an hybrid account that combines the features of savings and chequing accounts.

It is the only account with a rate below 1% on this list of the best high-interest savings accounts in Canada. But it’s included because of its unique features.

Key Features:

  • Send cash in seconds
  • Split payments with friends and easily request money from them
  • No monthly fees and no minimum opening balance
  • Unlimited free transactions
  • Simple and easy to use mobile app
  • Deposit are held in trust with a CDIC member (not disclosed)

The account is still in beta. Additional features to be added include a metal cash card, free ATM withdrawals, spending features, direct deposit and more

Registered Accounts: Not available

High Interest Savings Account Rate: 0.75%



Best Promotional Savings Rate

If you’re looking for promotional rates on a savings account, the 2 accounts below have some of the best rates at the moment.

They are not included above because their non-promotional rates is quite small.

1. Tangerine Savings (2.10%)

The regular interest rate on the Tangerine account is a mere 0.10%. So it’s nothing to be excited about. But Tangerine offers new customers an introductory rate of 2.10% for the first 150 days.

Tangerine Savings has no monthly fees and you can easily move your savings to the chequing account which allows unlimited Interac transfers and bill payments for free.

2. RBC High Interest eSavings Account (Up to 2%)

The base rate for the account is 0.05% but new customers can earn up to 2% through the promotion. Here’s how it works:

  • Earn 1.50% interest for the first 3 months
  • Get 2% for the next 3 months if you open an RBC TFSA or RRSP within 60 days of opening the eSavings account.

You need a minimum balance of $100 in the registered account to qualify for the 2% interest rate.

The offer expired on April 30, 2021.

3. CIBC eAdvantage® Savings Account (1.25%)

CIBC offers a bonus interest of 1.20% for the first 120 days for new clients opening an eAdvantage savings account for a total interest of 1.25%. Afterwards, the rate drops to the regular interest of just 0.05%.

The account has no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements. But, you’ll be charged $5 per transaction, including withdrawals, transfers, bill payments and so on.

You can also get the same rate on the CIBC TFSA Tax Advantage Savings Account and CIBC RRSP Daily Interest Savings Account – limited time offer.


Before you decide to open a new account to take advantage of a promotional rate, you should think about your plans after the promotional period.

Would you open another account and move your money to get a better rate? Or leave your money to earn the ridiculously low non-promotional rate?

Sometimes, it’s better to just open an account with a bank with a high enough, non-promotional rate. Depending on how much you keep in a savings account, moving your funds around may not be worth the extra effort.

High Interest Savings Account at the Big Banks

So how does the big banks’ “high interest” compare to the ones from the online banks and credit? In short, they don’t come close.

And to think that some of the accounts are branded as “High Interest Savings Account” is laughable. These are the current rates:

  • RBC Royal Bank High Interest eSavings: 0.05%
  • TD Bank High Interest Savings Account: 0.05%
  • ScotiaBank Momentum PLUS Savings Account: Base rate of 0.05% but up to 0.75%
  • BMO Savings Builder Account: Base interest rate of 0.05% plus a bonus interest of 0.30% (see below)
  • National Bank High Interest Savings Account: 0.05%

CIBC’s HISA is covered under the promotional rates section above. It also pays a base interest of 0.05% but new account holders get the bonus of 1.45%.

The Scotiabank’s Momentum Plus Savings account is tiered depending on how long you hold it without a debit transaction. You earn a total interest of 0.75% if there are no debits for 360 days.

BMO Savings Builder Account pays a bonus interest rate of 0.30% if you increase your monthly balance by at least $200.

What is a High Interest Savings Account (HISA)?

As the name suggests, high interest savings accounts pay an interest rate that is several times the rates on regular savings account.

But note that just because an account is branded and marketed as a HISA does not make it one. Just look at the rates from the big banks’ HISA for example.

Don’t want to lock in your funds for years in a GIC or invest in equities? HISAs combine the benefit of a decent interest rate, quick access and safety of your funds.

How to Choose a HISA?

The interest rate is usually a good place to start. But like I mentioned earlier in this post, there are other variables you should consider before choosing a high interest savings account.

These include:

  • Promotional Rate: Is the posted savings rate an introductory offer or not? If it is, think about your options after the promotion period.
  • Monthly Fees and Transaction charges: Are there monthly fees or charges to send Interac e-Transfers, bill payments and so on?
  • Deposit Insurance: This may be a concern depending on how much you want to keep in the account.
  • IT Platforms: Internet banking, mobile apps and the overall usability of a bank’s platforms
  • Customer service:
  • Virtual or physical locations
  • Other account types and features: For example, do they have joint accounts or registered accounts (TFSAs or RRSPs)? Can you do mobile cheque deposits?

Are HISAs Safe?

Simply put, the deposits you put in any high-interest savings account are as safe as the ones in your regular bank accounts.

All deposit taking financial institutions in Canada are either protected by CDIC or the provincial deposit insurer.

Deposits at all the online banks, credit unions and big banks covered in this post are guaranteed by one of the following:

  • CDIC: Up to $100,000 in each insured category. Funds in your HISA and other non-registered accounts, excluding joint accounts, are deemed to be separate insured categories. Check this CDIC guide for more information about how it works.
  • DGCM: The Deposit Guarantee Corporation of Manitoba provides 100% protection on deposits held at one of its covered institutions.
  • FSRA: Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario guarantees deposits up to a limit of $250,000 in non-registered accounts but unlimited for registered accounts.

While the chances of a bank failing is remote, you should consider the deposit insurance limit when deciding on where to put your funds.

A few tips to help you maximize your deposit insurance include:

  • Spread your funds across multiple financial institutions
  • Open a joint account: They are a separate insured category with CDIC for example.
  • Use other insured categories if possible: With CDIC, you have a separate limit of $100,000 in each of your TFSA, RRSP, RRIF accounts.

Check this posts for strategies on how to maximize your deposit insurance guarantee.

Conclusion

You may not beat inflation with the current rates on some of the best high interest savings account in Canada, but they’re a big improvement to the rates on regular savings accounts.

Are there any financial institutions I missed out? Please let me know in the comments and I’ll check them out.

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Simon is a CPA by day and a Personal Finance Blogger by night. With over a decade experience in financial services, he's passionate about personal finance, investing and helping people take control of their financial life.

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