6 smart ways to use high-yield savings accounts and earn up to 200 times more on your money, from people who do

Financial planners and savers alike are obsessed with high-yield savings accounts. Westend61/Getty

If your savings are sitting in an account earning less than 1% in interest, you’re missing out.

Dozens of banks, financial institutions, and even robo-advisers offer high-yield savings accounts with no fees, low minimum balances, and great earning potential. Storing your savings there can help them grow, while keeping them completely safe from investment risk.

Everyday people use high-yield savings accounts to keep track of separate savings goals, curb impulse spending, and grow their money safely.

Here’s why six people say moving their money into a high-yield savings account was the right decision for them:

Eric Rosenberg has three online savings accounts at different banks

Eric Rosenberg is not pictured. RossHelen/Shutterstock.com

Eric Rosenberg, a freelance writer and former bank manager, has three separate high-yield savings accounts to keep track of different savings goals, including one that specifically keeps money he needs for his property taxes and homeowners insurance.

Notably, each of his online savings accounts – held at Charles Schwab, Ally, and Capital One – has low fees and high interest rates. They’re also institutions he deems trustworthy.

“Your money is too important to ignore. And while moving funds to a new account at a new bank may seem like a hassle, opening an account with an online bank is painless in most cases,” Rosenberg says.

Elizabeth Aldrich earned over $US250 in interest on her balance in just eight months

Elizabeth Aldrich. Courtesy of Elizabeth Aldrich

For years, travelling writer Elizabeth Aldrich kept her emergency fund at a local credit union earning just 0.05% in interest annually, which translated to about $US0.54 a month.

To earn more on her savings, Aldrich decided to transfer her $US13,000 balance to Ally when it was offering an APY of 2.20%. Over the next several months, she put an additional $US16,250 in the account. Eight months later, she earned what amounted to an extra $US268.83 in interest.

Aldrich now says six of her 10 bank accounts are high-yield savings accounts.

“My high-yield savings accounts have helped me curb overspending and funnel that additional money toward the things that really matter in life,” she writes.

Sarah Li Cain says a high-yield savings account allows her to access money she needs at a moment’s notice

Sarah Li Cain is not pictured. Solis Images/Shutterstock

When Sarah Li Cain, a freelance writer and podcast host, and her husband were deciding where to save for a down payment, they ultimately chose a high-yield savings account over a certificate of deposit (CD).

After some research, they went with Ally’s online savings account, which allowed them to contribute extra money at any time, offered a high interest rate, and ensured their money was accessible at a moment’s notice.

“I’m happy we went with a high-interest savings account because it meant I could earn a bit of interest while keeping our money close,” she writes. “I also felt great knowing we could pounce on a deal once our dream home came on the market – and when it did, we pounced as planned.”

Brynne Conroy opened a high-yield savings account to earn more on her money without risking it in investments

Brynne Conroy is not pictured. Westend61/Getty

Brynne Conroy, a personal-finance blogger, utilised a high-yield savings account when she was working toward the goal of buying a house.

She wanted to grow her money quickly, and most importantly safely. The money in her savings account at Barclays wasn’t exposed to risk from the markets, nor was it too easily accessible to be tapped for her own impulse spending.

While Conroy acknowledged the potential downsides of her high-yield savings account – interest is taxed and money takes a few days to transfer to her primary bank – she ultimately found them to be minimal compared to the benefits.

“I don’t mind an extra 1099, and being rewarded with a higher APY in exchange for the accessibility of funds in moments of temptation is just too sweet a deal to pass by,” she writes.

Melanie Lockert is self-employed and found peace of mind in keeping her savings accounts separate

Melanie Lockert. Courtesy of Melanie Lockert

Melanie Lockert, a self-employed writer and entrepreneur, says online savings accounts are the best way for her to keep track of the money she sets aside for taxes, vacations, sick days, and emergencies.

To take it a step further, Lockert set up automatic transfers so the accounts fund themselves.

“Being clear and specific with my savings goals has transformed my financial life for the better,” she writes. “I am more clear, focused, confident, and know exactly how each dollar is used. Not only that, but it has given me peace of mind to know that I have money in the bank and that I’m prepared for a variety of situations.”

Anna Baluch and her husband combined their savings in a high-yield account, potentially earning hundreds of dollars a year

Anna Baluch is not pictured. Raquel Lonas/Getty Images

Freelance writer Anna Baluch ditched her bank when she got married and combined her savings with her husband in a high-yield account.

“If we had stayed with either our premarriage savings accounts, $US20,000 in savings would have made only $US2 to $US6 in interest,” she wrote. “Now we can enjoy an estimated interest earnings of $US440 with our Ally Bank online savings account. Just like most people, we work hard for our money, so there’s no reason to have it sit in a savings account that essentially does nothing for us.”


savings and retirement