This was my mentality until I noticed I was making a measly 0.70% in my money market account.
It was time to make a change. Take a read through my collection of best high interest savings accounts for millennials and let me know if you can score an account with more than one percent. Sheesh.
Why You Should Look Into High Interest Savings Accounts
Having $1,000 in an Oh Sh!t Fund or proper six to nine months of emergency expenses sitting in a savings account is essential to living a debt free life. It’s what keeps you from going back into debt because you have the cash available for a potential laptop crash, cell phone disaster or car collision.
You worked hard to set that money aside, so why not make that emergency money work for you? The best high interest savings accounts will turn your savings into a little profitable machine without you having to do any additional work.
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My Money Market Account Sucked
I recently looked at my own Oh Sh!t Fund and realized it wasn’t earning me shit.
Savings vehicle: Money Market Account
Dividend rate: 0.70%
Compounded / Credited: Monthly / Monthly
“Isn’t my money at least worth a sushi dinner in earned interest?”
Good Indicators You Have a Freaking Good Savings Account
So, I popped open my laptop one afternoon and got to work. There’s a few indicators that I used when I was researching the best high interest savings accounts. Take a look at your current savings account. If it has any of these factors, bless you. You’re doing it right.
- Earning more than 1% in interest.
- No monthly maintenance fee.
- 100% ATM fee reimbursements.
- Easily connects with other banking institutions for transfers.
- Ease of use via app and/or website.
- Customer service experience.
It’s important to note…
The above factors mattered the most to me. You may care about entirely different indicators, such as minimum account balance fees, ability for automatic contributions, or ability to setup multiple account owners. Make a list of indicators before you dive into your own research so you can ensure you have all the right boxes checked for your situation.
Best High Interest Savings Accounts for Millennials
Below is a list of banks with the best high interest savings accounts that I considered.
- 1.85% APY
- $100 minimum to open
- 6 transactions per statement cycle
- Member FDIC
CIT Bank offers a Premier High Yield Savings Account which boasts 1.55% APY with no fees. All you need is $100 to open one. In the fine print, it outlines that rates are variable and subject to change without notice. You can also open a money market account which earns more interest at 1.85% and a minimum $100 to open. The drawback with the money market account is that your account is limited to six preauthorized or automatic transfers or withdrawals per transaction cycle. Not a deal breaker if you are using this to stash your Oh Sh!t Fund in.
Ally Bank offers a 1.75% APY on their online savings account with no monthly maintenance fees and daily compounding interest. I like this feature! If you need to deposit checks, you can setup Ally eCheck Deposit for fast deposits. Your still limited to six transactions per cycle, but this is pretty standard across most banks nowadays. I did think it weird that they charge $25 per hour for account research if you need them to dig through transactions for you.
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
There are no minimums to open an online savings account with Marcus and no transaction fees. You can earn 1.8% APY currently and the website provided a handy calculator to see how much interest I could earn over time. I called customer service and the first line I called had me listen to nearly four minutes of advertisements. The next number I called was for a loan specialist, not a savings specialist, and not clearly listed on the website. Eight minutes later I found out that there is no app and transfers must be made via the website or by phone. This was a turn off for me.
American Express is one of the most popular financial services companies in the US, so the level of comfort in banking with them is a bit higher than others that I researched. You can earn 1.75% on your account currently. You are limited to six transactions per cycle and you are not provided any ATM or debit cards or checks. Not an issue if you plan to move money electronically. They also provided a ton of info in the FAQ section.
I hadn’t heard of Barclays before I started my research, but upon entering their website, I found all the right information. No fees, 1.75% APY, no minimum balance to open and I can make online transfers to and from other banks. One thing I noticed in the fine print that I didn’t like mentioned that deposits made by check or electronically will be held for five business days.