A bonus saver can help you reach your goals sooner while maintaining good savings habits.
A bonus saver, also known as an incentive saver, rewards you with a bonus interest rate if you meet the conditions of the savings account. If you need an incentive to save, a bonus saver can help you develop a regular savings plan. The conditions differ between banks, so it's important to understand what they are before you commit to a bonus saver account.
standard variable rate
Bonus Saver Savings Account Offer
Introductory rate of 3.05% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.80% p.a. Available on balances below $250,000
- Maximum Rate: 3.05% p.a.
- Standard Variable Rate: 1.80% p.a.
- Introductory period: 4 months
- Monthly fees: $0.00
Compare bonus saver accounts below
Think about your savings habits when comparing bonus saver accounts to help you find the best one for your needs. Compare across multiple banks and ensure you can meet the conditions to get that bonus rate.
What is a bonus saver account?
A bonus saver account is a savings account that rewards you with extra interest when you meet the account conditions. These are also known as incentive saver accounts, as they incentivise you to save, or bonus interest accounts.
The account conditions that need to be met in order to earn the bonus interest could include a minimum amount of money you need to deposit per month, no withdrawals for the month, linking an everyday bank account from the same bank or making a weekly tap and go purchase. Everyday, banks are thinking of new ways to earn the bonus interest rate to differentiate themselves to the market. So it's important to regularly compare savings accounts to ensure you're always getting the best deal.
How can a bonus saver account benefit me?
A bonus saver account is designed to encourage you to save money on a regular basis. The terms used for this type of account generally come with two requirements. The first requires a minimum monthly deposit without making any withdrawals from the savings account for a given month. The second looks at the growth of the account from the first day of the month to the last and if the balance has increased by a set amount. If one of the two conditions are met, generally you can receive the bonus interest. The bonus rate is an additional percentage that’s determined by the bank and then added to their standard variable interest rate.
Do I lose the bonus interest permanently if I don't meet the conditions for one month?
No! If you haven't met the conditions for one month, you'll be eligible for the bonus interest again the following month. Any month you meet the conditions, you'll be able to receive the bonus interest.
What features should I look for in an Australian bonus saver account?
Bonus saver accounts give you an opportunity to earn a higher interest rate in return for exercising some financial discipline and displaying good savings habits. When comparing between different Australian banks and their bonus saver accounts, compare the following features.
The amount of bonus interest you get
Each bank will offer different bonus interest rates, so make sure to look for one that offers a high bonus interest rate.
What are the deposit conditions?
Sometimes the deposit conditions are quite strict, requiring you to deposit high amounts each month in order to earn the bonus interest rate. Ensure you're realistic when considering the deposit requirements.
The withdrawal conditions
Some banks will not allow any withdrawals in the month, while with others, you’re free to make withdrawals as long as you essentially return that money by meeting a monthly growth total. For example, if the goal is to save $200 in a month, and you withdraw $50, you will need to deposit at least $250 into the account before the month finishes in order to qualify for the bonus interest.
If a minimum balance is required
With some financial institutions, you may have to open the account with a certain amount of money and maintain a minimum balance to avoid having to pay extra fees for the account.
Some of these accounts will be accessible only through a linked transaction account, while others act almost like a transaction account and give you access through an included debit card.
Interest rate penalties
Check with the lender regarding the terms for when you don’t make the deposit requirement within a month. With some banks you’ll lose the bonus interest but still earn the standard variable rate, while with others, the interest earned on a month where the conditions are not met could drop to as low as 0.01% p.a.Back to top
Term deposits versus bonus saver accounts – which is better?
This depends on your financial situation. The benefits of a term deposit include locking in a fixed interest rate meaning your funds are protected against any interest rate drops. The downsides are that you can’t access your funds until the deposit matures and you won’t benefit if the interest rate rises while your money is locked away in a term deposit.
With a bonus saver account, on the other hand, you can usually access your funds whenever you need, but you're usually penalised with a lower interest rate if you do so. Also, as the interest rate on bonus saver or incentive saver accounts is variable, this means it can change at any time. There are several other types of savings accounts available to help you realise your financial goals, which are discussed below.
Can under 18's open a bonus saver in Australia?
Yes. There's a range of children's savings accounts, including bonus savers. You’ll need to shop around and compare the features of a range of accounts to find the right one for you. Look for an account that doesn’t charge any ongoing fees, that has no minimum balance requirements and that offers easy access to your funds. It’s also important to consider whether there are any minimum monthly deposit requirements, whether the bonus interest rate only applies for a short introductory period, and what happens to the money in the account when the account holder reaches the age of 18 or 21.
How do I compare kids’ bonus saver accounts?
You'll also need to think about the following when comparing kids’ bonus saver accounts:
- Tax implications
- Where the income is coming from (the parent or the child?)
- The type of account (a trust account or personal savings account?)
- Withdrawals and deposit restrictions for the child
- Whether or not a keycard will be linked
What are the advantages of disadvantages of bonus savings accounts?
- You get a higher interest rate. Bonus saver accounts give you an opportunity to boost your savings quicker with a higher interest rate.
- There are usually no fees. These types of accounts typically do not have monthly account keeping fees, so you can focus on your savings goals.
- Motivate yourself to save. Individuals who need help with saving may find that having a set monthly goal to meet makes it easier to stay on track with saving.
- There are usually terms and conditions. Some Australians may find it hard to continually meet the strict terms of a bonus saver account on a month to month basis.
- You'll need to try and avoid making withdrawals. Unlike a transaction account, the money kept in a bonus saver account cannot be easily accessed and used to make everyday purchases.
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