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Best Bank Accounts in Canada – 2019

Top Bank Providers in Canada – The 2019 Guide


When it comes to managing your money, keeping it in an envelope under your mattress isn’t going to cut it. You need an account that’s safe, secure, and allows you to access your money where and when you need it.

Comparing bank accounts isn’t always easy. Rates and features vary widely and comparing options between websites can take hours.

That’s why Insurdinary has pulled together this guide on the Best Bank Accounts in Canada. Simply compare options side-by-side to choose the best account for you. Find the account that fits you best and take control of your financial life!

Manulife Advantage Account


Manulife Bank offers the Advantage Account – one of our top favorites on this list. This account combines chequing and savings into one account; the convenient access of a chequing account and the higher interest rate of a savings account.

With the Advantage Account, you can save faster without worrying that your money will be difficult to access in the event of an emergency. Plus, you can earn a higher-than-average interest on your chequing balance while it’s in your account.

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  • Mobile banking, cheque deposit, and bill pay
  • No monthly fees if you maintain a $1000 balance
  • One of Canada’s largest ABM networks
  • Free Canadian bank-to-bank transfers

Tangerine


Tangerine is all about the convenience of mobile banking. Tangerine has Cafes rather than traditional bank branches, but it’s the mobile app that makes Tangerine one of the best bank accounts in Canada.

The mobile app not only allows you to manage your account and deposit cheques from your mobile device, it also helps you manage your spending by categorizing your transactions. You can see your spending habits at a glance.

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Tangerine Checking Account Benefits:

  • Earn interest
  • Mobile banking and cheque deposit
  • No monthly fees
  • Access to Scotiabank ABM network
  • Track and categorize your spending habits

Tangerine Savings Account Benefits:

  • Earn interest 1.15%
  • Earn 2.75% for the first 6 months as a new client
  • No monthly fees
  • RSP, RIF, and tax-free accounts available
  • Create a savings plan and schedule automatic savings transfers from chequing

EQ Bank Savings Plus Account


EQ Bank offers one of the best bank accounts in Canada when it comes to savings. The EQ Bank Savings Plus Account lets you earn 2.30% everyday interest* with no fees while also allowing bill pay and transfers from the same account.

You can also set up Savings Goals and track your progress to help keep you motivated and on top of your savings plan.

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  • Interest rate: 2.30%*
  • No monthly fees or minimum balance
  • Unlimited transfers to linked accounts and other EQ accounts
  • Unlimited Interac e-transfers®
  • Free day-to-day transactions
  • GICs available to earn more on longer-term savings
  • * Interest is calculated daily on the total closing balance and paid monthly. Rates are per annum and subject to change without notice.

Meridian Good To Grow Savings Account


Meridian offers a full range of chequing, savings, mortgage, and investment options. When you open your first Good To Grow Savings Account, you receive an interest rate boost up to 3.00% for the first 5 months.

Meridian also offers a Sweep account. Sweep connects your chequing and Good to Grow savings accounts. Based on limits you set, Sweep maintains a balance for day-to-day transactions in your chequing account and transfers the remainder into your savings account each day to ensure that you earn as much interest as possible.

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  • Interest rate: 1.30%
  • Bonus rate: 3.00% for the first 5 months on first account
  • No monthly fees
  • Unlimited free transactions
  • Free access to Meridian and EXCHANGE network ABMs

Scotiabank


Scotiabank offers a full range of financial services, including chequing, savings, investments, mortgages, and insurance. They also offer one of the top bank chequing account options in Canada.

The Scotia One chequing account has unlimited transactions and free Transunion credit tracking. You also earn rewards on every debit transaction. You can redeem your rewards for travel, gift cards, entertainment and more.

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Scotia One Chequing Account Benefits:

  • Earn rewards points on every debit transaction
  • Earn 10,000 bonus rewards points when you open your account
  • Monthly fee: $13.95 (waived if you maintain a $4000+ balance)
  • Unlimited free transactions
  • 2 Free Interac e-Transfers per month

Scotiabank Momentum Plus Savings Account Benefits:

  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance
  • Interest rate: 1.00%
  • Premium period interest increases the longer you save, up to an additional 1.00%

Motusbank


Motusbank is a streamlined new option in banking. They offer a single chequing account option, plus savings and mortgage. Their chequing is one of the few fee-free interest bearing accounts available.

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No-fee Chequing Account Benefits:

  • Interest rate: 0.50%
  • Mobile banking, cheque deposit, and bill pay
  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance
  • Free, unlimited Interac e-Transfers®
  • Free access to THE EXCHANGE network ABMs

How to Find the Best Bank Account for YOU


Not sure which bank account is best for you? The reality is that the need a chequing or savings account, a free or fee-based account, or a variety of other features will all be different for everyone. Fortunately, Insurdinary helps you compare bank account options online without spending hours searching through separate websites.

In general, chequing accounts are the best place to keep money you’ll need for daily spending. They offer easy access to your money and often have convenient methods to transfer money between accounts or pay bills online.

Savings accounts typically offer less accessibility but higher interest rates. Keeping your savings in these accounts allows your money to grow over time. Less access to your money is actually a positive feature of many savings accounts, as you don’t need as much willpower to leave your savings where they are.

What to Know Before Choosing a Bank Account


Before you sign up for an account, there are a few things to consider.

The fees and benefits to each account will determine which is best for you. Know what you’re comparing and choose the one that fits your needs best.

 

Fees

There are two types of fees common to most bank accounts.

Monthly fees are flat fees charged for your account each month. Transaction fees may be charged per on purchases, transfers or other transactions, depending on your account.

Many fee-free accounts have fewer benefits, while accounts that give you more options may charge a monthly fee. If you want these additional features, a monthly fee could save you on transaction fees. If you won’t use them, go for the fee-free account.

 

Sign Up Process

Signing up for an account is usually very simple. Most can be set up online, but if you prefer to speak to someone in person, make sure the bank you choose has a local branch. You’ll need your SIN number and employment information to open most accounts.

 

Online Banking

Access to online banking is important to many people. Online banking allows you to monitor your accounts, make transfers, pay bills, and often even deposit cheques through the banks mobile app or website. This is especially helpful if you’re not located near a local branch.

Bank Accounts – Frequently Asked Questions


You have a lot of things to consider when it comes to choosing the right bank account for you. Get some of your most burning questions answered in our FAQ section below.

Are fee-free accounts always best?

Most fee-free accounts offer fewer features than premium accounts. If you won’t be using these features, the fee-free account may be the best fit for you. However, if you need more transactions, transfers, or other features, the flat monthly fee may cost you far less than accumulating transaction fees.

What is a “minimum balance”?

Some accounts have a minimum amount that needs to be maintained. Often, you can go below this balance but will be charged a monthly fee if you do. Like account fees, accounts with a minimum balance may offer you more features and benefits and possibly better interest rates. Make sure you read the fine print to see how minimum balances are calculated, as it could be daily balances, average balances for the month, etc.

Do I need online banking?

Online banking can be a great benefit, depending on your use. If you’re located far from a local branch, online banking can save a lot of time and trouble. If you need to make transfers or deposits at odd hours, online banking gives you 24/7 access to your accounts. Also, if you shop online or pay bills online, you can use your online banking app to handle these transactions conveniently.

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