Want to maximize your savings account? Look for this one feature, experts say

Get the most from your high-yield savings account’s great APY while interest rates remain competitive.

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Despite signs that prices are coming down, the inflation rates Americans have experienced over the past couple of years are still having an effect on everything from housing to gasoline and utilities.

One tool you have to defend against high costs is a high-yield savings account. After a series of rate hikes by the Federal Reserve designed to bring down inflation, savings interest rates today are around 4% APY or even more. And while high-yield savings accounts are fantastic options for storing your emergency fund or money you want to set aside for other short-term savings goals, they may have another use, too. 

Compare today’s top savings rates here to see how much more you could be earning.

One way to maximize your savings account 

Rather than putting only the money you want to save for a specific purpose, like an emergency fund, in savings, you may benefit from keeping the majority of your cash in a high-earning savings account. By doing so, you can take advantage of the higher interest with a bigger cash balance, while still maintaining the ability to withdraw from your balance when you need. 

“Many banks are no longer imposing caps on the number of transactions in savings accounts,” says Trent Porter, CFP, founder of Priority Financial Partners. “So you can often get away with keeping the bulk of your cash in savings instead of a checking account.” 

The lack of a cap on transactions means that anytime you need to access your money for monthly payments or bills, you can either set up a direct payment from savings or transfer the money elsewhere to make your payment. “For example, most transactions other than checks, like paying your credit card bill, can come directly from a savings account,” Porter says. 

What to know about transaction limits

In the past, the Federal Reserve enforced transaction limits on certain account types, including savings accounts, under Regulation D. The rule limited transfers and withdrawals to a maximum of six per month. During the pandemic, the Fed lifted the regulation and later suspended it indefinitely.

Today, banks can decide for themselves whether to keep the six-per-month transfer limit — and many often do. If you want the option to use your savings account like a checking account, check your high-yield savings account‘s terms for any penalties or fees for making more than six transfers per month. Otherwise, the costs could potentially eat into your interest earnings and negate the benefits. 

Explore top savings account options today.

Best high-yield savings accounts with no transaction limits

Below, we’ve gathered a few high-earning savings account options available today that charge no fees or penalties for making more than six transfers monthly. 

CIT Bank

CIT Bank consistently tops our picks for great high-yield savings accounts today, largely for its very high 4.85% APY. You can earn that rate with the bank’s Platinum Savings account on balances of $5,000 or more after making at least a $100 minimum deposit. There are no monthly fees and the account terms state that customers are allowed an unlimited number of transactions per month.

Bread Savings

Bread Savings offers another solid rate on its high-yield savings account, with 4.65% APY when you deposit at least $100 to open your account. There are no monthly fees and no fees for exceeding transaction limits.

Citizens Access

Citizens Access offers a 4.50% APY on its high-yield online savings, with no monthly fees and only a $0.01 minimum deposit required. The bank specifies that it does not limit the number of withdrawals or transfers that you’re allowed to make from your savings balance.

Ally Bank

Ally Bank is a popular online banking choice that charges no monthly fees and no minimum balance to earn a 3.75% APY on savings. Unlike the other banks on our list, Ally does still limit customers to six transfers per billing cycle. However, you won’t incur any costs for doing so; Ally is refunding the $10 excessive transaction fee it previously charged.

The bottom line

Saving any amount of money in today’s high rate environment can help you earn more on your cash over time. But even if you’re still working to build up your savings balance, there are plenty of ways you can take advantage of interest-bearing accounts today. If you have recurring monthly payments that you can pay through electronic transfer, like your credit card bill or an online rent portal, consider putting more of your cash in savings and earning interest on that money until you’re ready to use it.

Learn more about how much you can get with today’s top savings rates now.

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