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Published December 16, 2021
Updated December 16, 2021

Canada’s 12 Best Savings Accounts for 2022

Choose the best savings account in Canada by comparing interest rates, fees and convenience.

ALSO CONSIDER: Best high-interest savings accounts | Best online savings accounts | Best high-interest TFSAs

Savings accounts help your money grow. The best savings accounts have high annual percentage yields, or APYs. The higher the APY, the more money you’ll earn over time.

The best savings accounts in Canada

 

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

Achieva Financial TFSA Savings Account

Our pick for a low-fee TFSA with investment portfolio options

Interest Rate
1.10%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This high-interest no-fee TFSA will help you save up for a TFSA GIC or a Qtrade Direct Investing online investment account, both offered through the virtual bank.
    • Achieva Financial is an online division of Manitoba’s Cambrian Credit Union and offers savings accounts, GICS, TFSAs, Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs), and Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs).
  • Product Details
    • 1.10% variable interest rate. Interest is calculated on the daily closing balance and added to the principal on the last day of each month.
    • No monthly fee.
    • To open this account, you must agree to become a member of Cambrian Credit Union Limited, which requires a $5 share. Your is considered an investment and is fully refundable should you decide to cancel your membership.
    • Earn $1 per month when you choose electronic documents.
    • Manage your money by phone, through online banking and a mobile app.
    • Other Achieva TFSA investment options include TFSA GICS, available in one to five-year terms, and Qtrade Direct Investing online investment accounts.
    • Service fees are listed online.
    • Free deposits and one free cheque, direct transfer or pre-authorized payment every month.
    • $15 fee to close the account within six months of opening.
    • No minimum balance is required.
    • Eligible for Deposit Guarantee Corporation of Manitoba deposit insurance.

Canadian Tire Bank Tax Free High Interest Savings Account

Our pick for an online-only no-fee TFSA

Interest Rate
1.25%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This online-only high-interest TFSA features all the benefits of Canada Tire’s ‘Money Magnet’ HISA, with tax-free advantages.
    • The virtual bank also offers credit cards, savings accounts, and GICs.
  • Product Details
    • 1.25% variable interest rate. Interest is calculated daily, based on the closing balance of the account, and paid monthly.
    • No monthly fee.
    • Automatic savings plan available.
    • Manage your money by phone or through online banking.
    • Other Canadian Tire TFSA investment options include Tax-Free GICs, available in one to five-year terms.
    • Service fees are listed online.
    • Deposits and withdrawals are free.
    • $50 fee to transfer your TFSA to another bank (transferring in another TFSA is free).
    • No minimum balance.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.
    • This account is not available to Québec residents.

EQ Bank Savings Plus Account

Our pick for a fee-free and flexible hybrid savings account

Interest Rate
1.25%*, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • EQ Bank’s Savings Plus Account is the digital-first bank’s flexible hybrid chequing and savings account. It features a high interest rate, no monthly fees, and free and unlimited transfers.
    • The bank also offers joint accounts, US dollar accounts, TFSAs, RRSPs, and GICs.
  • Product Details
    • 1.25% interest rate*.
    • No monthly fee.
    • This hybrid account gives you the benefits of savings with the flexibility of chequing.
    • Mobile Cheque Deposit is available through the EQ Bank mobile app.
    • Zero monthly banking fees.
    • No transaction or service fees. EQ Bank does not charge account fees, fees for sending or receiving Interac e-Transfers®, fees for bill payments, overdraft fees, or dormant account fees.
    • No minimum balance, but a $200,000 maximum balance.
    • Access your money immediately through the mobile app and online banking website, where you can deposit or transfer funds using Interac e-Transfers® or Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) to linked accounts.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.
    • EQ Bank is not available to Quebec residents.

      * Interest is calculated daily on the total closing balance and paid monthly. Rates are per annum and subject to change without notice.

Hubert’s Happy Savings TFSA HISA

Our pick for a no-fee online TFSA with investment portfolio options

Interest Rate
1.10%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This high-interest and no-fee TFSA gives you access to term deposits and VirtualWealth online investment accounts.
    • Hubert Financial is the online division of Sunova Credit Union and offers a high-interest savings account, term deposits, registered plans, a credit card and VirtualWealth investing.
  • Product Details
    • 1.10% variable interest rate. Interest is calculated daily, paid monthly.
    • No monthly fee.
    • To open this account, you must become a member of Sunova Credit Union, which requires a $5 share. Your share is considered an investment and is fully refundable should you cancel your membership.
    • Use this TFSA to save $1,000 and open a higher rate tax-free one-year term deposit that is redeemable quarterly.
    • Manage your money by phone, through online banking and a mobile app.
    • Other Hubert TFSA investment options include TFSA term deposits, available in one-year quarterly redeemable terms to five-year non-redeemable terms, and VirtualWealth online investment accounts.
    • No transaction or service fees, except for wire transfers and a $25 fee for accounts that are inactive for six months with a balance under $1,000.
    • No minimum balance is required.
    • Eligible for Deposit Guarantee Corporation of Manitoba deposit insurance.
    • Hubert Financial is not available to Québec residents.

motusbank High Interest Savings Account

Our pick for a no-monthly fee online HISA with a feature-rich mobile app

Interest Rate
1%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This online HISA with a debit card and a lot of flexibility. Use online banking and a mobile app for price-match and Auto-Save features and to manage bill payments, direct deposits, and more.
    • In addition to chequing and savings accounts, motusbank offers mortgages, registered plans, GICs, investing, and a home equity line of credit loan.
    • motusbank is the subsidiary of Meridian Credit Union.
  • Product Details
    • 1% interest rate.
    • No monthly fee.
    • Manage your money through online banking and a mobile app.
    • Free, unlimited use of the Price Drop feature, a price-matching tool that may reimburse you if it finds a lower price for something you purchased.
    • motusbank account holders have access to over 43,000 surcharge-free ATMs in North America with THE EXCHANGE® Network in Canada and the Allpoint Network in the US
    • No transaction fees and unlimited debit purchases and withdrawals.
    • Service fees are limited and listed online; fees include and include $1.25 to send an Interac e-Transfer.
    • No minimum balance.
    • Immediate access to your money through ATM withdrawals, transfers to linked accounts, and more.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.

motusbank TFSA savings account

Our pick for a TFSA with multiple investment options + a competitive bonus offer

Interest Rate
1.25%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
2.25% bonus interest rate for approx. four months
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This online-only no-fee TFSA features a generous promotional rate. Once the promo period ends, you’ll still earn with a very competitive standard interest rate.
    • motusbank is an online division of Meridian Credit Union and offers chequing and savings accounts, mortgages, registered plans, GICs, investing, and a home equity line of credit loan.
  • Product Details
    • Eligible motusbank members who open a new TFSA Savings account can earn 2.25% interest for 122 days. Full promotional offer details are listed online.
    • 1.25% variable interest rate. Interest is calculated on the closing daily balance and is paid monthly.
    • No monthly fee.
    • Get access to a motusbank Financial Planner.
    • Automated savings program available.
    • Manage your money by phone, through online banking and a mobile app.
    • Other motusbank TFSA investment options include TFSA GICs, available in 1-5 year terms, and investment accounts and portfolios from Qtrade Direct Investing and VirtualWealth.
    • Service fees are listed online.
    • $50 fee to transfer your TFSA to another bank (transferring in another TFSA is free).
    • No minimum balance is required.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.

Neo Financial High-Interest Savings Account

Our pick for no-fee online HISA with free and unlimited transactions

Interest Rate
1.30%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • Neo offers a digital-first banking experience and a fee-free HISA with one of the highest interest rates available in Canada.
    • Pair this high-interest savings account with the Neo Card to earn an average 5%+ unlimited cash back at thousands of local and national Neo partners.
  • Product Details
    • No fees, 1.30% interest rate as of May 17, 2021 (not a promotional rate; Savings interest rate is calculated daily on the closing balance and paid monthly).
    • Earn up to 130x more than at traditional banks (0.05% is the rate at most banks for high interest savings accounts, with 0% on most daily everyday chequing accounts – unlimited transaction accounts are typically $29.99 per month, whereas Neo is free).
    • Make bill payments, send and receive Interac e-Transfers®, and make bank to bank transfers to and from existing bank account – all with no monthly fees or minimum balances and unlimited free transactions.
    • Available Canada-wide (with the exception of Quebec, coming soon).
    • Manage everything from the phone app, whenever and wherever. Desktop/web banking is also available.
    • Much like any bank account at a traditional bank, the Neo Savings account is eligible for CDIC deposit protection, and provided by Concentra Bank, a CDIC member institution. Deposits held in Neo Savings accounts are combined with eligible deposits held at Concentra Bank, for up to $100,000 of deposit protection, per category, per depositor.

Oaken Financial Oaken Savings Account

Our pick for a no-monthly fee HISA that works well with GICs

Interest Rate
1.25%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This fee-free savings account has a high interest rate, no minimum balance and works easily with Oaken GICs.
    • Oaken Financial is backed by Home Bank and powered by Home Trust Company and offers a digital app and online banking services for HISAs and GICs.
  • Product Details
    • 1.25% interest rate.
    • No monthly fees.
    • Transfer money from your account to an Oaken GIC, or transfer your GIC’s matured balances or interest payments to your savings account.
    • Automatic contributions are available.
    • Free and unlimited transactions.
    • Service fees are limited to optional costs, like a $2 paper statement (e-statements are free and made available automatically).
    • No minimum balance.
    • Access your money immediately by transferring it to a linked account or using free and unlimited e-Transfer.
    • Choose either Home Bank or Home Trust Company as the issuer for each account, both of which are members of CDIC.

Tangerine Tax-Free Savings Account

Our pick for a TFSA with investment options + a competitive bonus offer

Interest Rate
0.10%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
2.25% for five months + a $300 cash bonus
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This flexible, no-fee TFSA comes with a generous promotional offer that will earn you cash and a high rate of return for five months.
    • Tangerine is a subsidiary of Scotiabank and offers chequing and savings accounts, GICS, registered accounts, credit cards, mortgages, loans and investment products.
  • Product details
    • To earn 2.25% and get a $300 cash Bonus:
      • Become a new client online by March 8, 2022, using the promo code EARNMORE. Open your first eligible Savings Account and Chequing Account within 30 days, and you’ll earn 2.25% interest in your Savings Account for five months. Then, open a TFSA as a second Savings Account (RSPs, RIFs and US$ Savings Accounts are also eligible) and you’ll get 2.25% interest on those Savings, too – up to $1,000,000 for each Account Type. For these subsequent Accounts, this rate will apply for five months from the day you started earning 2.25% interest in your first eligible Savings Account.
      • To earn the $300 Bonus, add your payroll and have the first payroll directly deposited in your Chequing Account within 60 days of opening the Account. If you keep it going for three straight months, you’ll earn a $300 Bonus after the third month.
      • Full promotional offer details are listed online.
    • 2.25% promo interest rate and 0.10% regular interest rate.
    • No monthly fee.
    • Automated savings program available.
    • Manage your money by phone, through online banking and a mobile app.
    • Other Tangerine TFSA investment options include Tax-Free GICs, available in 90-day to 5-year terms, and investment accounts and portfolios.
    • Service fees are listed online.
    • Deposits and withdrawals are free.
    • $50 fee to transfer your TFSA to another bank (transferring in another TFSA is free).
    • No minimum balance is required.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.

Wealth ONE Bank of Canada High Interest Savings Account

Our pick for no-monthly fee HISA that can be included in registered plans at the same bank

Interest Rate
1.25%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This HISA offers a competitive rate of interest.
    • Wealth One Bank of Canada is a newer bank that opened in 2016. It has two offices in Toronto and Vancouver and offers online banking, a mobile app and competitive interest rates.
  • Product Details
    • 1.25% interest rate.
    • No monthly fee.
    • Automated savings program available.
      HISA can be included in TFSAs, RRSPs, RRIF or other registered plans.
    • Free unlimited transactions to/from your linked account, and ten free bill payment transactions per month.
    • Service fees are listed online and include a $1.50 charge to send an Interac e-Transfer.
    • No minimum balance.
    • Access your money immediately through transfers to linked accounts, Interac e-Transfer, and more.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.

Wyth High Interest Savings Account

Our pick for a flexible no-fee online HISA with a strong interest rate

Interest Rate
1.40%, no minimum balance required
Bonus
N/A
Monthly Fee
$0
  • Why we like it
    • This flexible no-fee online HISA comes with the ability to make deposits and withdrawals.
    • Wyth Financial is a trade name of Concentra Bank and also offers GICs, mortgage solutions and more.
  • Product Details
    • 1.40% interest rate on balances up to $150,000.
    • No monthly fee.
    • Eligible for Autodeposit for funds received via Interac e-Transfer.
    • Easily transfer funds to a GIC.
    • One free Interac e-Transfer® per month, and free transfers for withdrawals and deposits to your external linked account.
    • Service fees are limited and listed online.
    • No minimum balance.
    • Immediate access to your money through Interac e-Transfer, transfers to linked accounts, and more.
    • Eligible for CDIC deposit insurance.
    • This account is not available to Quebec residents.
  • Summary
    • Achieva Financial TFSA Savings Account
    • Canadian Tire Bank Tax Free High Interest Savings Account
    • EQ Bank Savings Plus Account
    • Hubert’s Happy Savings TFSA HISA
    • motusbank High Interest Savings Account
    • motusbank TFSA savings account
    • Neo Financial High Interest Savings Account
    • Oaken Financial Oaken Savings Account
    • Tangerine Tax-Free Savings Account
    • Wealth ONE Bank of Canada High Interest Savings Account
    • Wealth ONE Bank of Canada  Tax-Free Savings Account
    • Wyth High Interest Savings Account

Methodology

NerdWallet Canada selects the best savings accounts based on several criteria including annual percentage yields, minimum balances, fees, digital experience, access to other services, and more. Both registered TFSAs and non-registered savings accounts that are available in more than one province are considered for this list.

Honourable mentions

Though they didn’t make it into our picks for the best overall savings account, the accounts below are also solid choices that can help you meet your savings goals.

Things to know about savings accounts

By Hannah Logan

 

What is a savings account?

A savings account is a common type of deposit bank account that earns interest on its balance.

Savings accounts can make it easier to achieve specific savings goals, such as a new car, a wedding, or an emergency fund. Since savings accounts earn interest, they help your money grow over time.

» Make sure you understand the basics: How interest rates work in Canada

Types of savings accounts

There are a number of different types of savings accounts available to Canadians. Most are fairly simple, while others have features designed to meet specific needs.

Options include:

  • Basic savings accounts.
  • High-interest savings accounts (HISAs), which earn a higher rate of interest but may come with more restrictions.
  • Hybrid accounts, which offer the benefits of chequing accounts with the ability to earn interest.
  • Joint savings accounts, which are accessible to more than one person, such as a married couple.
  • Kids savings accounts, which parents and guardians can open for children and teens.
  • Senior savings account, which offers discounts and advantages for senior citizens.
  • Foreign currency savings accounts, such as USD savings accounts for people who want to deposit U.S. dollars without exchanging currency.
  • Business savings accounts, which separate business savings from personal savings.
  • Registered savings accounts, such as tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs) and registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs), which are registered with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and offer tax benefits.

» See our picks: The best high-interest savings accounts in Canada

How savings accounts work

When you store your money in a savings account at a bank or credit union, the institution may lend those funds to other clients. However, your money is always accessible to you when you need it, and you’ll typically earn a small amount of interest. Your savings account may have rules about how many withdrawals you can make each month, but it’s typically easy to access your funds when you need them, and you can deposit as much as you’d like.

Since savings accounts are designed to help you save money, they don’t tend to come with debit cards or cheques like you’d get with chequing accounts. If you have chequing and savings accounts with the same institution, you may be able to link them both to your debit card, but you may be charged a fee for using your debit card to withdraw money from your savings account.

To avoid potential fees, your best bet is to transfer the money from savings into chequing when you need it. If you have a smartphone, you can often do this via online banking or your financial institution’s app.

Interest rates on savings accounts vary by the financial institution. Some banks or credit unions pay interest on the total amount in your account, while others only pay interest on amounts above a minimum required balance. Interest on savings accounts is often compounded, which means you can earn interest on your interest, not just on the amount you originally deposited. Read the terms and conditions of the account carefully to see whether the interest is compounded annually, monthly, or daily. The more frequently your account compounds interest, the more your money will grow.

» MORE: How compound interest makes your money grow

How to choose a savings account

Savings accounts are offered by banking institutions across Canada, but that doesn’t mean you should pick one at random. Instead, compare a few different features to ensure you get the best option to suit your needs. Here are some things to consider when choosing a savings account.

Interest rate

How much interest will you earn on the money in your savings account? Keep in mind that some banks offer promotional interest rates that may seem enticing at first, but drop down to a much lower rate after a few months. Depending on your savings goals, this type of introductory interest rate might work for you. However, it’s often better to look at the best regular interest rate and not focus solely on the promotional rates so you can best anticipate the annual percentage yield (APY), which shows how much interest you will earn over a year.

Minimum balance

Some savings accounts in Canada require that you keep a minimum balance in your account at all times if you want to earn interest. For example, your account might require a minimum balance of $1,000. If you can be sure you will always have that minimum amount in place, that’s fine. However, it might be a better idea to look for an account with no minimum requirements for peace of mind that you can always earn interest no matter your balance.

Fees

Most financial institutions in Canada do not charge monthly fees for savings accounts, but there might be fees for certain types of transactions or a limit on the number of free transactions you get per month. Pay attention to the fine print and check to see how many withdrawals are allowed each month, whether you can make free e-transfers, and if there are other service fees to note.

Convenience

You’ll want to make sure it is easy to withdraw your money when you need it. Choose a savings account that’s convenient by considering your banking preferences.

If you prefer to do your banking in person, you’ll want to choose a financial institution with a physical location rather than an online-only bank. In that case, many people prefer to have their savings and chequing accounts at the same financial institution. If you already have a chequing account at a particular bank or credit union, it might be easiest to open a savings account there, too. Plus, it will be simple to move money back and forth between the accounts.

If you’re comfortable with an online-only savings account, make sure you understand how your money can be accessed. Can you use a debit card at an ATM, or will you need to transfer the funds to a chequing account with another bank? Also, consider whether the digital experience is convenient and offers everything you need. Is there a mobile app? Is the online banking interface easy to use? Can you call a customer service representative for questions?

» See our picks: The best online savings accounts in Canada

How to open a savings account

Opening a savings account is a pretty easy process and can be done in person or online depending on your financial institution. The process should only take a few minutes, but you will need to meet a few requirements and share some personal information.

Most Canadian banks require you to be a Canadian resident with a permanent address in Canada. However, some financial institutions will allow you to open a bank account as a non-resident. Many banks and credit unions list these requirements on their websites, or you can contact them to ask about this option.

To open your own savings account, you’ll need to be the age of majority in your home province or territory. You will need to show an official government ID and provide personal information, including your:

  • Social Insurance Number (SIN).
  • Address and phone number.
  • Date of birth.
  • Email address, if you plan to use online banking.

Children and younger teens can open a kids savings account with a parent or legal guardian.

» DISCOVER: 8 easy ways to start saving money

When to use a savings account

A savings account is a great place to keep money to help you reach your savings goals. In fact, you could choose to have more than one savings account if you’re saving towards multiple goals at the same time and want to separate your progress towards each one.

Some experts recommend using a savings account to save for something you want to buy in about three years or less, such as:

Basic savings accounts give you easy access to your money accounts typically have fewer rules and no limits on deposits.

For longer-term savings goals, such as retirement or a down payment on a house, a basic savings account might not be the most efficient choice That’s because interest rates are typically quite low, so you won’t earn as much as you could with other options, such as a registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) or guaranteed investment certificate (GIC). And you’ll pay taxes on the interest you earn in a non-registered savings account.

It’s also not generally a good idea to use a savings account for day-to-day transactions, since many savings accounts limit the number of transactions you can make before paying fees. Instead, use your chequing account for daily banking needs.

» Plan for the future: How much money do you need to retire?

Are savings accounts taxable in Canada?

Yes, you will have to pay income tax on any interest you earn in your savings account. Every year, your bank or financial institution will send you a T5 slip that shows how much interest you earned. You’ll claim this interest income along with all other personal income on your tax return.

You won’t pay taxes on the interest you earn in a tax-free savings account (TFSA), which is a registered savings account that can hold both investments and cash deposits. However, these accounts come with strict contribution and withdrawal rules and they aren’t a replacement for a basic savings account.

» See our picks: The best high-interest TFSAs in Canada

Alternatives to basic savings accounts

A savings account is a great option for most people, but it may not be the best type of bank account for all your needs. If you want to save money for less immediate financial goals, consider an option that earns more interest.

Alternatives to basic savings accounts include:

  • Chequing accounts.
  • RRSPs.
  • TFSAs.
  • High-interest savings account (HISAs).
  • Term deposits, like non-redeemable GICs, that lock your money away for a set period of time in exchange for a higher interest rate.
  • Investments options, such as bonds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), market-linked GICs, and mutual funds, will help your money grow faster than it will in a savings account, but their value can also decrease if the market goes down.

Fortunately, you don’t have to pick just one type of account. You can choose any of these accounts to help you reach your financial goals. It’s all about finding the right combination of bank accounts for your needs.

» Ready for a new bank?: Here’s how to switch to a new bank or credit union

  • FAQs

    • Are savings accounts safe?

      Yes, your savings account is as secure as any other type of bank account. Many Canadian banks are covered by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC), which protects your money — up to $100,000 per type of account — in case the bank fails. However, it’s also up to you to be cautious and protect your banking and personal information to avoid identity theft and ensure that nobody else can access your finances.

DIVE EVEN DEEPER

Canada’s 9 Best High-Interest Savings Accounts of 2021

A high-interest savings accounts (HISA) will help you grow your funds faster than standard accounts.

Canada's 13 Best Online Savings Accounts of 2021

Online savings accounts offered by virtual banks have competitive interest rates and low or no fees.

Canada’s 11 Best High-Interest TFSAs of 2021

The best high-interest tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs) have minimal fees and earn high rates of interest

What Is a TFSA and How Does It Work?

A Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) is a tax-sheltered registered investment or savings account that can be used to achieve all sorts of savings goals.