Best Joint Accounts in Canada For 2022

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Are you searching for the best joint accounts in Canada that fit your needs? Your search ends here!

Joint accounts are an excellent way to share your finances with a close friend, family member, partner or colleague. While there are many joint accounts in Canada, not all of these accounts are created equal. Each joint account comes with different rules, benefits and requirements. 

This article covers some of the best options available to you and shows you what to look for when opening a joint account in Canada.

After reading this article, you should be able to find the perfect joint account in Canada for your needs.


What is a Joint Account?

A joint account is an account you hold with another individual (or individuals). The account contains the names of at least two people.

When you have a joint bank account, you and a co-owner have full access to the account, as well as equal control. If one of the owners dies, the other automatically inherits all of the money. 

Both parties are also responsible for what happens on that account. If your partner writes a bad cheque or just exceeds your balance you’re liable for that debt. 

Additionally, deposits in joint accounts belong to both parties and every co-owner can withdraw funds from the account.


How Do Joint Accounts Work?

Joint accounts function like any other bank account: You deposit money, earn interest (if applicable), and withdraw the money when you need it. 

However, joint accounts have one key difference: they’re opened by two or more people who own and manage the bank account together. 

When you think of a joint account, you probably think of a husband and wife who are keeping their money in the same account. 

But that’s not always the case. You don’t have to be married or even living together to open a joint account. 

There are many different combinations of people and reasons why they might want to have a joint account from parents and children to friends sharing bills.

When you open a joint account, all owners share equal access to it. This means that either account holder can make deposits and withdrawals without the consent of the other.

Because of this, it’s very essential to only open a joint account with someone you trust completely because they technically have complete access to your money as well.

Some banks may require both parties on a joint account to sign all withdrawals or cheques above a certain amount but even so, all the money in the account belongs to both parties equally.


Best Joint Accounts in Canada

With so many joint accounts in Canada to choose from, it can be hard to know the best one for you and your partner.  Here is a list of some of the best joint accounts in Canada:

1. EQ Bank Joint Account

The EQ Bank joint account is an account designed specifically for individuals who are comfortable sharing bills and joining savings. 

The account gives you the ability to invite up to three people to be part of your savings or bill payments.

This can be an excellent option if you want to save towards a common goal with your partner, children, or other family members.

Also, your deposits in the account are protected by the Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC).

To get started with the EQ Bank Joint Account, simply open a Savings Plus account and invite the other parties to set up with joint account with you.

Key Features:

  • Savings interest rate of 2.00%
  • Maximum balance of $500,000
  • Free bill payments 
  • No minimum balance required
  • No monthly fees
  • Free cheque deposits
  • No Interac e-Transfer fees

Learn more: EQ Bank Savings Plus Review

2. Tangerine Joint Account

The Tangerine joint account is an account designed for people who are looking to save money together without incurring hefty fees. 

Similar to their single accounts, the Tangerine joint account features no monthly fees and unlimited free transactions. With Tangerine, co-owners can manage their finances at any time of day via a mobile app, or the Tangerine website.

Key Features:

  • The savings interest rate of 1.00% 
  • No overdraft fees
  • Zero monthly fees
  • Unlimited free transactions
  • No non-sufficient funds fees
  • CDIC insurance

Related Post: Tangerine Savings Account Review

3. Scotiabank Joint Account

The Scotiabank joint account also allows you to share your bills and build your savings with your partner, friend, family member or colleague.

The account allows co-owners to write cheques, make deposits and withdrawals and manage the account jointly. 

Funds in the Scotiabank joint account are owned by both parties and either party has access to them at any time. That means each person is responsible for the debts incurred by the other person using this account.

Key Features

  • No monthly fee
  • No minimum balance requirement
  • CDIC insurance up to $100,000
  • Overdraft protection

4. Canadian Tire Bank Joint Account

A Canadian Tire Bank joint account is an account that has no fees or minimum balance requirements. 

This allows both parties to manage their money together in one place, without having to worry about fees. 

By opening this type of account, both parties will have access to their funds at any time, from anywhere in Canada using their Canadian Tire Bank cards and online banking service.

However, to open a joint account with Canadian Tire Bank, both parties must first open a personal savings account with the bank.

This account is best for people who have been using Canadian Tire Bank for a long time and want to keep their money safe.

Key Features

  • Savings interest rate of 2.40%
  • No monthly fees
  • Deposits are covered up to $100,000 by CDIC
  • No minimum balance required
  • Free electronic fund transfers

5. Motive Financial Joint Account

Motive Financial offers a joint high-interest savings account that allows you and your partner/spouse to save and earn interest together.

The account can be used as an effective tool for managing financial responsibilities as a couple, whether you’re paying bills, saving for retirement or planning your next vacation.

However, before you and your partner can open a joint account with Motive Financial only, you both must first sign-up as new customers.

Key Features

  • Savings interest rate of 3.00%
  • CDIC insurance
  • 50 free customized cheques

6. Alterna Bank Joint Account

The Alterna Bank joint account is a no-fee savings account that can be opened online in just a few minutes. 

The interest rate on this account isn’t the highest available in Canada, but it’s still very competitive with other high-interest savings accounts. 

With this account, you’ll get unlimited transactions with no fees. There are also no minimum deposit or balance requirements.

Key Features

  • Free unlimited bill payments
  • Savings interest rate of 1.50%
  • Free Interac e-Transfers
  • A Maximum balance of $250,000
  • Free Mobile Banking
  • CDIC insurance

7. KOHO Joint Account

A KOHO joint account is an account that you can also share with someone else. You’ll both have equal access to the funds in the account and can use them for whatever you want.

They’re free to use, like all KOHO accounts. You can set up instant transfers at any time, so you and your partner have access to what you need when you need it.

You can also set up round-ups on purchases made on the joint account to make sure everyone is saving even when they don’t realize it.

Key Features

  • No monthly fees
  • Savings interest rate of 1.20%
  • Free e-Transfers
  • Supports pre-authorized debits
  • 0.5% cashback on all purchases with the KOHO card

Learn more about the KOHO Joint Account.


How Do You Open a Joint Account?

There’s no one universal process for how to open a joint bank account, but the steps are similar to the processes of opening an individual account.

While some banks require you to visit a branch to an open account in-person, you can open the above joint accounts online.  

To open a joint bank account, you’ll need to choose a bank and account type. You will also need to provide the name of the other person you want to add to the account. 

After providing the person’s name, both of you will be asked to provide the information necessary to open the account. While the required information can vary by bank, the common ones include:

  • Your name and address
  • Your date of birth
  • Your Social Insurance Number (SIN)
  • A government-issued ID like a driver’s license or passport

Before applying for a joint bank account, it’s important for both parties involved to understand how this type of banking works and whether or not it’s right for them.

Also, you should note that to open a joint account with some banks, you must already have an individual account with that bank. If you don’t, simply open the required account before applying for a joint account.


Pros and Cons of a Joint Account 

Joint bank accounts are a great way to help keep you and your partner on the same financial page. 

But there are several pros and cons of having a joint account you need to be aware of before opening the account. Here are some of the pros and cons of opening a joint account:

Pros

  • Flexibility: Joint accounts can come in handy if one of you is unavailable and money needs to be accessed immediately. For example, if an emergency happens while one person is away on a business trip, the other can pay the bills.
  • Combining financial goals: Building wealth as a team makes reaching goals easier than doing it alone. This also helps to solidify trust and create savings habits that benefit you both.
  • Convenience: With a joint account, you won’t have to worry about transferring money to your partner if you want to pay a bill.
  • Make it easier for others to help manage finances: If you’re incapacitated, the other owner will be able to step in to pay bills and keep things running smoothly.
  • Get access to better interest rates: Because joint accounts typically come with higher balances, some often earn more interest than personal accounts.
  • Accessibility to funds in case of death: In the unfortunate event that one person passes away, the surviving spouse will have access to the joint account without any restrictions. This is especially helpful if the deceased spouse was solely responsible for paying bills.

Cons

  • Joint liability: When you open a joint account, you are agreeing to be jointly responsible for any debt incurred in connection with the account such as overdrafts or bounced cheques.
  • Lack of privacy: Having a joint account means spending will be out in the open, which can cause frictions or problems if one partner is mismanaging funds or struggling with managing money. 

How to Choose the Best Joint Account

When you’re setting up a joint bank account with a loved one, or with a business partner, there are certain things you should look out for.

Here are some of the things you should consider when deciding on a joint account:

1. Account Limits 

Some banks limit the number of withdrawals or transfers you can make from a joint account.

Look for a bank that offers unlimited transactions so neither of you has to worry about exceeding transaction limits. A great example is EQ Bank with free unlimited deposits and withdrawals.

2. Minimum requirements

Some financial institutions have minimum requirements that must be met before opening an account. 

Make sure that the bank doesn’t require a minimum balance or one that exceeds your financial capabilities.

3. Interest Rates

If you and your partner want to earn interest on your savings, look for an account that offers a competitive interest rate on your balance. 

From the list of the best joint accounts above, you’ll quickly notice the wide range of savings rate available on joint accounts.

If you’re opening a joint account to save for a financial goal, then it is important to go with the bank that offers the best interest rate.

4. Monthly Fees

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a joint bank account is whether they charge a monthly fee. 

Check the terms and conditions to determine if there are any monthly fees associated with the account.

5. Overdraft Protection

Look for an account that offers overdraft protection so that you don’t incur penalty fees in case of an overdraft. 

Keep in mind there may be fees associated with overdraft protection, so read the fine print before opening the account.


FAQs on the Best Joints Accounts in Canada

Can you have 3 names on a joint bank account?

Joint accounts are most usually held by two people, however, some banks allow you to add up to 3 or more people to a joint account. A good example is EQ Bank.

Can you open a joint account online in Canada?

Yes. Most Canadian banks offer online banking options. This means you can do every of your banking activities online including opening a joint account. All you have to do is sign in to their online banking portal.

Who pays tax on joint account in Canada?

Interest generated on a joint account requires proportional tax reporting, in which each owner of a joint account discloses their percentage of the total interest received on the account. After the interest reporting, taxes are payable according to each holder’s portion of the interest.

What happens to a joint account when one dies?

In most cases, if a joint account co-owner dies, the remaining owner will automatically become the sole owner of the account.


Final Thoughts on the Best Joint Accounts in Canada

Joint bank accounts provide several advantages for people who want to manage their finances together

There are several different options out there, and all of them have their benefits. As a result, choosing from the best joint accounts for your needs is very important. The best bank accounts for you will depend on your goals and what you want to get out of the account. 

To figure out the best joint account for you, evaluate the best joint accounts provided above and decide what features are most important for your situation

We hope that we’ve been able to provide you with some insights and direction in helping you decide which joint bank account is best for you.

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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