Online Savings Accounts

Any recommendations for a good high yield online savings account?

I've seen one called Vio Bank has the highest rate (2.52% APY on all balances). Anyone have any experience with them?

I recently got one from Citi, since I have a credit card with them already I saw them advertising 2.36% APY but have found transferring money in an out to be troublesome, so much so I have taken to setting up external transfers though my local credit union to transfer money in and out of it.  Worse still I recently read a review stating that the 2.36% APY is only a 3 month introductory rate... ☹️

So I'm looking for other alternatives, and want to try to do some research before just jumping in blind like I did with Citi.

Trying to avoid any with high minimums or activity requirements.  Access to the finds via Debit Card and/or Check Writing would be nice but not an absolute requirement as I can simply just charge anything to my credit card and then wait for an ACH to my checking account to then pay off the card.

Any recommendations/feedback is appreciated.

19replies Oldest first
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Active threads
  • Popular
  • Are you looking for a checking account or a savings account? A savings account is going to be limited to 6 outgoings per month, that’s just the law. And it may not come with debit card access (see 6 out going transaction limit). Ally is currently at 2.2% and Discover Bank is 2.1%. Checking accounts with high interest rates usually require at least 10 debit card transactions per month plus direct deposit. 

    Like
    • jenmas Yes I think everyone knows about the transaction limits because its standard, nothing special there.  I already have a checking account at my local credit union, I just need somewhere to park money that isn;t needed soon to earn even more interest.

      And while many don't offer debit cards some do. Citi does and check writing too, but like I said that's not too important to me. I am more worried about higher interest and minimal fees than anything else.

      Like
  • Synchrony usually increases rates before most others, including Ally. The drawback is transfers take 2 business days. Ally can usually do 1 day transfers.

    I just keep $5k at Ally (just in case) and the rest at Synchrony.

    Like
    • dakinemaui I'll check them out. I personally am not too worried about transfer times as I figure if I have an immediate need for money in savings for something I can just charge it to my PIF CC and then transfer the money over to checking to payoff the card.

      Actually I am quite tempted to start using an online savings account as my main account. Since I charge everything to my PIF CC, I can essentially compress a months worth of spending into one transaction to stay under the 6 widthdrawl limit and get a good rate with minimal hoops to jump though.

      Currently my local credit union checking is paying 2% APY but I have to maintain 12 debit card transactions per month of at least $5 each (and ATM withdrawals don't count). But I prefer to use my CC as it earns unlimited 2% cash back.

      Like 1
      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Sander I've been without a local bank for decades. Never been a problem.

      Like 2
      • nolesrule
      • Stealing From the Future fix is an improvement but is incomplete....
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view
      dakinemaui said:
      Slate Blue Sander I've been without a local bank for decades. Never been a problem.

       Same. We moved to an online bank at least 15 years ago.

      Like 1
    • nolesrule 15 years? That's impressive online banks must have still been quite new then I imagine and definitely not as full featured.  15 years ago I was barely old enough to drive.

      Anyway I was entirely online before, the only reason I switched back was I needed an account an my local bank to open a safe deposit box.  I was more thinking of no longer using a checking account all together rather than just switching to online. Since I use my cash back cc everywhere anyway I can compress a month's worth of expenses down to one cc autopay ach thus I should be able to stay below the 6 withdrawal limit easily enough.

      I eont be able to go completely checking-less yet though. The same credit union where I have my checking has my auto loan and I get a .5% discount on the interest for having it auto paid from my checking.

      Like 1
      • WordTenor
      • Can we agree that goals are dumb and immature? Sure.
      • WordTenor
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Sander I submit that going without a checking account entirely is risky—if you have an emergency that demands multiple cash-like payments, you are suddenly scrambling.  The six transaction limit isn’t a bank rule, it’s a federal government rule,  and if you exceed that amount more than about once they close your account.

       What I would do instead is see if the associated bank has a free checking account.  You could still keep it at zero but it would give you flexibility in the instance you had to make a bunch of checking transactions unexpectedly.  I keep my savings at capital one 360  because I’ve had the account since 2004,  and I have a checking account with them that just sits there with nothing in it. But if I needed to have money in that account it would be there instantly with no rules about how often I could use it. (I also have a checking account with a different bank but since you really don’t want one that’s irrelevant.)

      Like 2
      • nolesrule
      • Stealing From the Future fix is an improvement but is incomplete....
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Sander I wouldn't recommend forgoing a checking account. There are still a lot of things you can't pay for with a credit card, or if you do the additional fee charged exceeds any cashback bonus you might receive, so it would not be worth it. Just find an online bank with a good HYSA and a good checking account.

      In a typical month, my checking account has 5 credit card payments (but can go up to 8), mortgage payment, 3 transfers to brokerage accounts, 3 transfers to Treasury Direct (savings bonds),  2 checks for house cleaning, 2 transfers to kids' savings accounts, Life Insurance, 2 ACH for Florida Prepaid, Life Insurance, 1 transfer to my business for personal use of business Internet cost reimbursement, Natural Gas.

      Additionally, I have quarterly property taxes. Quarterly water/sewer. Annual homeowner's insurance, Semi-annual auto insurance.

      And this month I also wrote checks for handyman services, landscaping services, sprinkler services, and both my kids lost school books, so we had to pay for those to close out their school accounts for the year.

      Like 2
      • nolesrule
      • Stealing From the Future fix is an improvement but is incomplete....
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Sander I need to correct myself. I opened my Netbank checking account in 2000, so 19 years. ING took them over through bankruptcy via FDIC in 2007. And in 2012 ING sold the business to Capital One and rebranded it Capital One 360.

      Like
      • WordTenor
      • Can we agree that goals are dumb and immature? Sure.
      • WordTenor
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      nolesrule if you do the additional fee charged exceeds any cashback bonus you might receive, so it would not be worth it.

      This is the thing that prevents me from using my card on everything. Slate Blue Sander I would double-check everything you're paying by card for these fees. I didn't mention it before because you seem very sure that you can use your card for everything, and maybe so, but I certainly have a few transactions (utilities, student loan) that charge me more than my cash back percentage to use my card but have no fee for drawing from checking. Perhaps something like this would just be two of your six account withdrawals, but then you're down to four legal withdrawals per month.  Add one more for some cash now and then and you are down to three, one more for paying your card and you have only two.

      Like
    • WordTenor I actually recently went though this with my auto insurance. Before when I was paying it monthly there was a $1/mo installment fee for payments by ACH, $5/mo for credit/debit card, or $8/mo for manual payments. Obviously then I was using ACH. Just this last month I cam up to my 6 month renewal period.  I found that if I prepaid the full 6 month terms I would get a $13 /6mo discount for paid in full, I would also save $6 in installment fees, and I'd earn $8 in cash back from my credit card because now with no installment fees I could use my cash back card with no additional charge.  So for essentially a total savings of $27 /6mo  I switched that over.

      Obviously I cannot pay any other credit cards with this one, but I reallo don;t use my other 2 anymore because I get nothing for them, one of them I really should close its been open for such a short amount of time it should have a minimal impact on my credit, the other I will keep open because it is my oldest account.  But in either case I won't have any other payments to either.

      My rent comes out by ACH. So there is transaction #2.

      My utilities actually are happy to accept my credit card for no additional fee with auto-pay. (which is fine so I don;t even have to think about it).

      My car payment can't come of my card, and to keep my .5% interest discount it needs to come out of a checking account with my credit union but thats only going to be for about the next 18 months. In the meantime I could combine my car payment and rent as one transfer to my checking and pay my rent out of checking so I am still only at 2 transactions.

      If I wanted to put money in my Roth IRA in addition to my 401k (which comes right out of my paycheck) that could be another transaction but I could even roll that up into 1 ACH per year in a slow month where I know it won;t but me over.

      Looking over my checking account activity since using my PIF rewards cc, its mostly just small debit card transactions I have to make to jump though the banks hoops to earn interest.

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • Stealing From the Future fix is an improvement but is incomplete....
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Sander Yeah, you may be okay now, but it's not scalable.

      Like 3
      • TechieM2
      • IT Professional and General Geek
      • techiem2
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui I still have a local bank and local CU, but the local bank just sits at the minimum balances and the CU gets a small amount each paycheck to keep active, which I transfer out to Ally now and then.

      The main reason I keep them open is 1.  They are some of my longest accounts so I don't want to take the credit hit for closing them, and 2.  It's nice having a local bank when I get a buildup of cash I want to dump to my real savings or checking account.  :P

      My Ally account is my primary savings account now and gets whatever funds I don't feel I need to keep in my checking account for paying my credit cards etc.  (although I could probably move most of that to Ally as well, I think most places will do ACH from Checking or Savings just the same).

      Like
      • nolesrule
      • Stealing From the Future fix is an improvement but is incomplete....
      • nolesrule
      • 2 yrs ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      TechieM2 There's no credit hit for closing bank accounts.

      Like 3
      • TechieM2
      • IT Professional and General Geek
      • techiem2
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      nolesrule Well that's great to know!  Maybe I'll close the savings account at the local bank since all I use is the checking account for the cash dumps...and the savings account has a $300 minimum balance to avoid fee...that's a decent chunk of change that could go elsewhere....

      Like
    • TechieM2 I deposit cash to my online bank via ATM. FWIW, only credit accounts impact your credit rating.

      Like
  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs is currently paying 2.25% with no minimums and no fees.

    Like
  • One that I use that I haven't seen mentioned is Barclays. I've been using them for 3 or 4 years as well as Ally for a couple years. Barclays is currently at 2.2% and seems to get to the latest competitive rates before Ally does although it is also at 2.2%. Ally seems to have the better CD rates.

    Like
Like Follow
  • 2 yrs agoLast active
  • 19Replies
  • 256Views
  • 8 Following