Keep your savings in a term deposit over 12 months and earn a competitive interest rate on your investment.
A 12-month term deposit holds your investment for one year where over time, it earns a fixed rate of interest. You can choose how often you want your interest paid. There are early withdrawal penalty fees should you decide to access your funds before the maturity date. These types of term deposits are considered to be a medium to long term investment – a lot can happen between now and one year so it's important to be prepared for the risks.
Compare 1 year term deposit interest rates below
Use our comparison table to see your potential earnings over 12 months.
finder.com.au's featured 12 month term deposits
|Product name||12 Months p.a. (at maturity)|
|MOVE term deposit||2.50% p.a.|
|Bank of Melbourne term deposit||2.55% p.a.|
|St.George term deposit||2.55% p.a.|
|Bankwest term deposit||2.55% p.a.|
|UBank term deposit||2.64% p.a.|
|BankSA term deposit||2.55% p.a.|
Calculate your potential earnings
Use our term deposit calculator to find out how much interest you could earn over 12 months.
- Deposit amount: Enter your deposit amount
- Interest: Enter the interest rate offered on your 12 month term deposit
- Saving term: Enter the number of months (12) your investment will be held
What is a term deposit?
A term deposit is a financial instrument where you deposit a certain amount of funds for an agreed period of time and earn a fixed rate of interest. These conditions will be specified by your bank and penalties are charged if you want to access your funds before the term (agreed period of time) is up. Once you reach the end of the term, your deposit reaches what's called "maturity".
How do I earn interest with a term deposit?
A term deposit gives you a fixed interest rate in return for investing your money for a fixed amount of time. You lock away your funds for one year, which means you can't touch it until the term is over. As a return, your bank awards you a competitive interest rate. Term deposits are generally a more restrictive way to build wealth from your savings.
If you commit to this type of term deposit, it's important to be aware of the cancellation fees that apply should you choose to break it open early. If you do need to make an early withdrawal, you will be charged fees and lose some of the interest you have earned.
How do I find the best 1 year term deposit for my situation?
One of the most important points to consider is the length of the term deposit. This could make a major difference in how much interest you are able to earn. If you can’t meet the terms you are going to lose money in penalties, while if you can exceed them you could be missing out on a higher interest rate.
Interest payment frequency
With a 12-month term deposit you will find that there are choices to make about how often the interest is paid into your account. You could choose to have interest earned paid to you monthly, semi-annually or when the account matures.
For investors who are mindful of their cash flow, you can synchronise the interest payments to your preferred cycle.
A competitive interest rate
Your interest rate represents the return you'll get for investing your funds. It also needs to cover the interest rate that you're taking on, since interest rates can change in a year's time. The amount of interest applied to your savings balance will differ between various banks. In some instances the difference is substantial, making this an important feature to consider if your intent is to build on your savings while in a 12-month term deposit.
Little or no fees
With the exception of the penalty charge for an early withdrawal, there are plenty of 12 month term deposits available that do not charge a monthly or establishment fee.
Minimum balance requirement
Term deposits for 12 months have balance requirements that differ depending on the financial institution. Some only cater to higher deposits of $5,000 or more, while other banks allow for an account with a minimum balance of $1,000.
What are the positive and negative points of investing in a term deposit?
- You're generally not charged a monthly fee. There are no deductions from your savings monthly to cover the cost of maintaining the account. This means your money works harder for you.
- It encourages you to save. You have an extra incentive to keep your savings inside the account by facing penalties for an early withdrawal. Also, it may feel like forced savings.
- You could get a competitive interest rate. A 12-month term deposit provides you with a competitive interest rate to help build your savings faster. However, remember to compare your options before you commit to any product.
- You can't access the term deposit until it matures. If you needed to withdraw your savings in order to cover an emergency, it could take up to a month before the bank releases them to you (though flexibility applies for financial hardship). For this reason as well as the penalty, it is important to carefully decide how much you can afford to have tied up in a 12-month term deposit.
- There's a minimum balance requirement. You usually need to have a lump sum of $1,000 to start a term deposit.
What are the risks?
Personal deposits of up to $250,000 are protected under the Government Guarantee per person, per institution. However, there are things you can't avoid if you want to maximise the account's saving potential.
You lose interest if you withdraw early
Not only are you charged an administrative fee if you request your balance before the end of the 12-month term, all interest earned is recalculated to reflect the amount that would have been paid on a lower term deposit.
There could be an automatic account rollover if you don't notify your bank
If you don’t let the bank know of your intent to have the funds released at maturity, it could automatically start it in a new term deposit account and charge you a penalty if you want to access it. To avoid this, you must contact the financial institution before the account matures and let them know that you will be withdrawing the money.
You should always review the term deposit before re-investing as changes in interest rates made by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) could affect your return on investment.
Wait, I still have some questions about term deposits
Will I be able to choose when the interest is paid into my account with a 12-month term deposit?
In most cases, yes with the longer term deposit you are able to choose between monthly, biannual or annual interest payments.
Are there online 12 month term deposits or do I have to visit a branch to set one up?
A number of financial institutions which operate solely online do offer online term deposits, as do your traditional banks. If you choose one of these expect to have to offer information on a transaction account to transfer the money out of.
Can I have the interest payments made into another account?
Some banks do allow you to have the interest paid into your linked account.