It’s no secret that 2017 has got off to a rocky start for Aussie savers. Even when we all have the best intentions of saving up a nice fat emergency fund, it’s getting harder and harder with interest rates dropping like flies.
In fact, since the start of the year, 18 providers from Mozo’s database have slashed savings account interest rates. That’s dragged the average interest rate all the way down to 1.88% – ouch!
But it’s not all bad news. We recently announced our Experts Choice Deposit Awards winners, which all offer savers tonnes of value. In fact, there are still some savings accounts out there offering as high as 3.05% interest – you’ll just have to work for it, by making sure you meet the bonus offer conditions.
Here are the some of the savings accounts that impressed our judges, and why we think they’ll impress you too.
1. ME Online Savings Account
Interest rate: 3.05% (as long as you open an Everyday Transaction Account and make a weekly Tap & Go purchase with the linked debit card)
Mozo Experts Choice Award wins: Savings Bank of the Year, Best Regular Saver
As an online only bank, ME is known for consistently offering competitive interest rates to savers since it doesn’t have the costs of brick and mortar branches to cover. It cleaned up in our recent 2017 Mozo Experts Choice Awards, and was even named Savings Bank of the Year.
Best suited to… savers who want access to a high ongoing interest rate and don’t mind managing their finances entirely online.
2. RaboDirect High Interest Savings Account
Interest rate: 3.05% (introductory offer for the first four months)
Mozo Experts Choice Award wins: Best No Strings Savings, Best Kick Start Savings
RaboDirect is another online bank, which goes to show that managing your money from behind a computer screen really can have big rewards! And if you might need to make a withdrawal or can’t meet monthly deposit limits, this introductory offer might be for you.
Best suited to… those who want a quick boost to their savings to set them on the right track, or maybe to meet a short term saving goal.
3. AMP Bett3r Save Account
Interest rate: 3.00% (as long as you deposit at least $2,000 each month into the linked Bett3r Pay Account from an external source)
Mozo Experts Choice Award wins: Innovation Award
This account took home an Experts Choice Award for Innovation, thanks to its unique structure which combines three linked accounts. It’s part bank account, part savings account and part budgeting app – and with 3.00% interest on offer, it really is the whole package.
Best suited to… anyone who needs a little help sorting out their budget, from paying bills on time, to meeting savings goals, right through to allocating spending money for the month.
4. Australian Unity Active Saver
Interest rate: 3.00% (when you make a deposit of at least $250 each month, and no withdrawals)
Mozo Experts Choice Award wins: Regular Saver
Australian Unity is a member-owned bank, so it’s no wonder it’s putting customers first and still offering awesome returns on savings. If you don’t think you can meet some of the higher deposit requirements of other accounts on this list, then this one might be for you.
Best suited to… savers who are keen to add to their savings stack regularly and score high interest, but might only be able to make smaller deposits each month.
5. ING Direct Savings Maximiser
Interest rate: 3.00% (for customers who also have an Orange Everyday Account, and deposit their pay of $1,000 or more each month)
Mozo Experts Choice Award wins: Regular Saver
ING Direct is another bank that doesn’t have to consider the upkeep costs of branches, and so can pass on great deals to their customers. So as long as you’re happy to manage your savings pot online or over the phone, you can cash in on this offer.
Best suited to… regular savers who are also after a great value everyday transaction account and are comfortable managing their money online.
Tips for maxing your savings balance
Now you’ve picked an award winning savings account, you’ve still got to put in the hard yards to make it work for you. Aside from meeting the criteria to bag bonus interest there are a few things you can do to make sure you’re getting the best return from your rainy day fund:
- Deposit often. The more you put into your savings account, the more you’ll get back out of it. So whenever you have extra funds in your bank account, make sure you transfer them over into your savings stash. They’ll earn more interest there – and you’ll be less likely to spend them impulsively!
- Plan your budget. One thing you’ll want to avoid after squirreling all your money away into a savings account is making withdrawals. Not only will your balance drop, but you could lose out on bonus interest. So to avoid having to take dollars back out of your account, plan a budget so it all goes to the right place and you never wind up high and dry.
- Keep an eye on the market. Don’t just set and forget, because the savings account market is constantly changing and the best deal today might not look so good tomorrow. Make sure you’re comparing interest rates and bonus offers regularly and if you find a deal that’s better than what you’re currently getting, don’t be afraid to switch!