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The best online savings accounts of 2019

How to find the best high yield online savings account. Make an extra $200 per year by picking the right savings account. We show you how, step by step.

Finding the right savings account can get you an extra $200 for free this year.

Depending on your balance, it could make you a lot more money.

Let’s say you have $10,000 to put into an online savings account.

How much would that turn into at a big bank savings account? Most big banks have an APY (annual percentage yield) of 0.15% or less. After a year, your account would be worth $10,015. Not much of a gain there.

I love getting money for nothing, but even I have a hard time getting excited over an extra $15.

Now let’s say you take that same $10,000 and put it into an online high-yield savings account with an APY of 2.25%.

After a year, you’ll have $10,225.

That’s $225 for doing absolutely nothing. Everyone needs some extra cash on hand for an emergency fund anyway. Why not get as much as you can while it sits there? All it takes is opening the right savings account.

The best online savings accounts

We’re going to do a deep dive into what to look for, which accounts are best, how to get the highest APY, and tricks for optimizing your savings accounts.

If you want to skip all that and open an account right now, all of these savings accounts are among the best:

You’ll be happy with any of them. My personal favorite is Ally.

What matters when picking an online savings account

Here’s how we evaluate the best savings accounts.

User experience

Good online and mobile apps make a huge difference these days.

While I do appreciate a great user experience, I do have to say that it doesn’t matter as much with a savings account.

It needs to be good enough but not great.

Why?

Because we rarely log into savings accounts. Savings accounts usually have limits of being able to withdraw from them up to 6 times per month. By definition, they’re not meant to be used regularly.

With one of my accounts — my emergency fund that I never touch — I log into it maybe once a year during tax season to grab the annual tax form. Otherwise, I never log in at all.

So the user experience should be good enough that it’s not infuriating, but it doesn’t need to be cutting edge. That adds a lot more value for checking accounts, which we do access all the time.

Fees

For online savings accounts, it’s absolutely essential that you get an account without any maintenance fees. Monthly maintenance fees used to be common. Thankfully, just about all the online savings accounts have done away with them.

On any good savings account, you’ll rarely run into fees during normal usage. But even on the best accounts, it is possible to trigger fees for certain events:

  • Returned deposit items
  • Overdraft items paid or returns
  • Excessive transaction fee (like going over 6 withdrawals per month)
  • Expedited delivery
  • Outgoing domestic wires
  • Account research fees

We’ve made sure not to include any banks in our list that have maintenance fees. But you should be aware of some of these other fee items that do exist on every account.

Convenience

What we consider to be “convenient” with savings accounts falls into two buckets depending on where you are in your own personal finance journey.

When you’re building savings for the first time, it’s essential to get a savings account with no minimum balance. A $5 required balance or something like that is fine, you just don’t want to have to worry about a higher one.

Don’t put up with any account that requires a sizable minimum balance. There are so many options that don’t have any balance requirements at all. This is the last thing you should be worried about in the early days, especially if an emergency comes up and you need to withdraw cash.

Later on, what you consider to be convenient typically changes.

Once you’ve built enough of a cash buffer for yourself, you’ll care a lot less about minimum balances. Instead, your accounts, cards, and banks have all gotten complicated enough that simplicity matters a lot more than it used to. At this stage, some folks will opt for a lower APY in order to consolidate their accounts and make everything more manageable.

Is this the optimum strategy to get every ounce of growth from your cash? No, it isn’t. But the extra piece of mind can be well worth the cost. If this sounds appealing to you, check to see if the savings account at your main bank has a good enough APY without any maintenance fees. If it does, it could be your best option.

FDIC insured

Don’t ever consider an online savings account that’s not FDIC insured. This means that the account is guaranteed by the federal government up to $250,000 per depositor. If something horrible should happen to the bank, the federal government guarantees you’ll still get access to your balance, up to $250,000. This is per depositor, so the $250,000 includes the combined balance of all your savings accounts at the same bank.

Just about every savings account is FDIC insured. It’s been a standard practice for a long time. But keep a close eye on this any time you’re considering an innovative or unique approach to storing your cash.

For example, some folks will store their cash in a money market account, which operates a lot like a savings account. Money market accounts are usually FDIC insured. But money market funds, which you place cash into from a brokerage account, are not FDIC insured. A subtle yet critical difference during tenuous times.

Another example: Robinhood attempted to roll out a checking account that promised a 3% APY. That’s a checking account paying higher interest than any savings account that was available at the time, by almost 1%. Sounds amazing right?

It came with a number of catches, one of which was that it wasn’t FDIC insured. Without the FDIC insurance, we don’t consider the higher APY worth the risk.

Our stance is that every dollar of our savings should be covered by the FDIC, even if the balance is high enough that we have to split it up between multiple savings accounts.

All of the savings accounts that we review below are FDIC insured. Just keep an eye out for this if you’re exploring an atypical approach to storing your cash.

APY rates

APY rates — the annual percentage yield — are the main difference between savings accounts. The higher your APY rate, the more money that you get automatically every month.

APY rates across saving accounts generally fall into 3 tiers.

Big bank savings account APYs

For the vast majority of big bank savings accounts, the APY is terrible. Big banks assume that you want a savings account along with your checking account, so they don’t do anything to entice you for the savings account itself. Even when plenty of online high-yield savings accounts are offering an APY of 2%, big banks might only offer a 0.15% APY. On a savings balance of $10,000, that’s a difference between making $200 a year versus $20 a year.

This doesn’t apply to ALL big banks, but most of them do fall into this category. So keep an eye out for these. Unless you really want to maximize convenience by consolidating accounts and taking a lower APY, it’s worth finding a savings account with a higher APY.

High yield savings account APYs

Over the last few years, high yield savings accounts have become extremely popular. These are usually banks that don’t have branches and specialize in online banking. Since their overhead is a lot lower, they pass the savings onto you with a higher APY.

There are a few banks that have become strong contenders in this category, like Ally and American Express.

You can also expect the APY to stay updated over time. Back during the financial crisis, the Federal Reserve dropped interest rates to 0%, and most high yield savings accounts had APYs of about 0.5-0.7%. As the Federal Reserve increased interest rates, these same accounts also increased their APY regularly. Many of them are now above 2%. Whenever interest rates increase, you’ll get those increases automatically from these accounts. No need to constantly switch between accounts and chase the best rate.

Cutting edge APYs

At any given moment, there are a few banks that are pushing the APYs higher than anyone else. They’re doing this as a promotional strategy to attract more customers. Some of these banks keep pace with changing interest rates, some of them don’t.

While we don’t consider it worth the effort to chase an extra 0.1% on our APY, these banks are an option if you’re looking to maximize the APY on your savings.

Online savings account reviews

Here’s the lowdown on the most popular online savings accounts.

Axos savings account

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 1.30%

The APY is much lower than other high-yield savings accounts — it’s average at best. There’s no reason to open an Axos account unless you’ve already maxed the FDIC limits on every other high-yield savings account and have to get a lower APY to horde all your cash.

I recommend picking one of the other accounts from this list.

Discover online savings account

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.10%

Discover’s APY is pretty strong. Not quite the top, but it’s really close.

And if you happen to have a Discover card or checking account, keeping your accounts in one place makes everything a lot simpler.

If you have another Discover account, definitely get a Discover savings account.

HSBC

HSBC has a few different savings accounts.

HSBC Premier Savings

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: $100,000 across your deposit accounts and investment balances. If you go below this balance, there’s a $50 monthly fee.
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 0.15%

The HSBC Premier accounts are for clients who have large deposits at HSBC. Unfortunately, the APY is awful. An APY that low with a minimum balance of $100,000 is kind of insulting.

This is a good example of a classic big bank savings account. A bunch of constraints with a terrible APY. Skip these accounts entirely.

HSBC Direct Savings

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: $1
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.30%

HSBC does have a high-yield savings account with a competitive APY. Normally, I’d recommend this account as a main contender.

But HSBC is just a terrible bank. Every interaction with them is more difficult than it has to be. The only reason I’d ever consider opening an HSBC account if I needed a giant, international bank for some reason.

Even though this account looks great on paper, you’ll regret it if your experience is anything like ours.

Ally savings account

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.20%

We’re huge fans of Ally. They’ve become one of the leading high-yield savings accounts.

Yes, Ally doesn’t technically have the highest APY, but it’s darn close. And they update their APY often. So if interest rates continue to rise, you’ll get a higher APY without having to do anything.

Their account UI is pretty slick too, and it’s always improving.

I have an Ally account myself.

Feel free to stop reading here and open an Ally account right now. You won’t regret it.

Capital One 360 Savings

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 1%

I do love Capital One 360’s sub-savings account, which let you save for specific items like a down payment on a house or annual vacation in a separate account.

However, that 1% APY is pretty weak. It makes the Capital One 360 Savings a poor choice compared to the other high-yield savings accounts in this list.

Skip the 360 Savings account entirely. The APY is too low.

You can boost the APY to 2% by opening a Capital One 360 Money Market account. It’s basically a savings account, but it does have a $10,000 minimum balance. And if your balance drops to less than $10,000, the APY is only 0.85%, which isn’t worth it.

The 360 Money Market account could be worth it. First, the $10,000 minimum balance should be a trivial concern for you. Second, you could get a lot of convenience if you already happen to have other Capital One cards or accounts. If that’s the case, a slightly lower APY at 2% compared to some of these other accounts could be well worth the simplicity of having all your accounts in one place.

If you don’t have any Capital One accounts already, choose one of the other accounts from this list.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None, but there is a deposit limit of $1,000,000 for all your savings account and CDs
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.25%

Goldman Sachs jumped into the high-yield savings account space with one of the highest APYs.

They do limit deposits to a total of $1,000,000, but that’s not a major concern. You’ll want to split up your cash balances across multiple banks to get it all FDIC insured anyway.

If you’re looking for your first high-yield savings account, this is a fantastic option.

American Express savings account

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.10%

American Express was one of the first to introduce a high-yield savings account, and it’s been around for awhile now.

These days, the APY is slightly lower than some of the competitors. While American Express does update their yields frequently, they’re always 0.10-0.20% off the highest rates. While it’s still a great option, I’d choose one of the other accounts for this reason alone.

One other caveat: the American Express savings account isn’t integrated into the same login account as the American Express credit cards. Even if you have both, it feels like having two different banks. There’s no extra simplicity from trying to consolidate.

Barclays savings account

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.20%

Another great option. Great APY, no maintenance fees or minimum balances — you can’t go wrong with a Barclays online savings account.

Synchrony savings account

  • FDIC insured: Yes
  • Minimum balance: None
  • Maintenance fees: None
  • APY: 2.25%

Synchrony is also a great option. The APY is one of the highest and has no minimums or maintenance fees.

The 4-step process to picking the best online savings account

  1. Check the banks that you currently have accounts with and see if they have a competitive savings account. If the APY is comparable to the accounts we listed above, stick with your current bank.
  2. Otherwise, pick an account from this list:
    1. Discover Online Savings Account
    2. Ally savings account
    3. Marcus by Goldman Sachs
    4. American Express savings account
    5. Barclays savings account
    6. Synchrony savings account
  3. Try to pick an account from a bank that you foresee doing other business with. For example, Ally has car loans and Discover has their credit cards.
  4. If you’re still not sure, go with Ally.

What about sub-savings accounts?

One of our favorite savings account tricks is to open “sub-accounts.” This allows us to easily budget for bigger purchases by saving a little bit each month. We can also track everything by separating all the accounts.

For example, I have these categories in my own savings account:

  • Emergency fund
  • House downpayment
  • Mini-retirement
  • Christmas gifts
  • Annual vacation

Each month, money goes into each of these separate accounts with the automatic transfers that I set up. And I can easily see how much I’ve saved towards my goals.

Ramit’s savings accounts used to look like this back before ING Direct was bought by Capital One:

ING direct
Here’s a more current example in Ally:

Ally
Some savings accounts will call these “sub-accounts,” and everything will be part of the same savings account. This is a rare feature to find though.

For everyone else, simply open up multiple savings account under the same bank login. You can easily have 5-10 savings accounts at the same bank. Then treat each account for whatever saving category that you like.

This means you can get “sub-accounts” at any bank, even if they don’t have a “sub-account” feature.

Don’t chase yields

Look, there’s always a bank that has a slightly higher APY. Banks use it as a promotion strategy to get more accounts, so it’s always changing.

Regularly researching new APY rates, looking for that extra 0.05% APY, opening accounts, and transferring money all over the place wastes more time than it’s worth.

Don’t be a rate chaser.

Remember IWT’s philosophy of big wins. Focus on the major wins that really move the needle and forget about the small stuff. Chasing higher APYs on savings accounts definitely falls into the “small stuff” category.

Pick a savings account that has a competitive APY from a bank that you trust for the long term. Then stick to that decision and work on improving other areas of your life.

Money market accounts vs savings accounts

The difference between money market accounts and savings accounts can be pretty confusing.

That’s because there’s no practical difference.

Here are the similarities:

  • The APY tends to be the same between both types of accounts.
  • You can withdraw up to 6 times per month.
  • Some have ATM cards, some don’t.
  • Some have minimums, some don’t.
  • Both are FDIC insured.

Basically they’re the same account. If your bank happens to offer a money market account with no maintenance fees, no minimum, and a competitive APY, feel free to use it.

Now for the confusing part: money market funds are completely different. They’re part of brokerage accounts and allow you to place cash while you wait to invest it. Since money market funds are not FDIC insured, so it’s not a good habit to store lots of cash in them.

When to get savings accounts from multiple banks

If you ask high net worth folks which savings accounts they have, sometimes they’ll list off half a dozen different banks.

At first, this makes no sense. Why all the extra complexity and different accounts?

There’s one reason: FDIC insurance limits.

Most people are limited to $250,000 worth of insurance at any given bank. Joint accounts and accounts across different categories (like retirement accounts) can increase this limit, but that only goes so far. If you have a substantial amount of cash, the only way to keep it insured is to open up savings accounts across several banks.

That’s why folks will start opening up savings accounts across multiple banks.

If you have multiple savings accounts to manage, Max will automatically move balances around your accounts to optimize for the highest APY while keeping all your cash insured. They do charge a 0.08% annual fee for the service.

As for which accounts to open, we recommend starting with these:

Any combination of accounts that have strong APYs will work.

 

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70 Comments

 
  1. avatar
    Margaret

    Have to second the recommendation for ING Direct; I love them.

    But, Ramit, I thought you had said in the past that you weren’t planning on buying a home in the foreseeable future. Have your plans changed, if you are now saving for a down payment?

  2. avatar
    Rich

    ING is up for sale, at least their banking division in the US. Not knowing who will end up with the ING assets, I moved over to Ally. I was very happy though with ING while I was there. Please post a follow up if you find a different savings bank that you like.

    • avatar
      Ramit Sethi

      I’m utterly mystified by how many people are worried about ING selling. I have gotten 20+ emails in the last 2 days about this, asking what they should do, where should they switch to, etc.

      A sale doesn’t necessarily mean something bad is going to happen. Why not wait and see?

    • avatar
      Rich

      It is not really a concern about ING going away as much as which companies may be taking over. GE and Citi are 2 companies I would rather not deal with if possible.

    • avatar
      Margaret

      Wouldn’t the deposits still be FDIC insured? If so, why should I worry? There’s no indication as yet that ING’s policies will change if they are bought out.

    • avatar
      Rich

      Yes, they are FDIC insured. It is that I don’t want to deal with the companies that are possibly buying ING. Instead of waiting to see, I just proactively switched. I was more curious as to Ramit’s thoughts. It really doesn’t matter though in general, as long as you are saving and it is FDIC insured. It is whatever works for you as an individual.

    • avatar
      Sarah

      The point is that it’s not worth switching to ING if the transactions costs of opening/closing accounts are high for you. It’s kind of like purposely not automating something.

      One of the companies that is rumored to be “far along” in takeover negotiations with ING is not as friendly (Ally, formerly GMAC). There’s no reason to expect them to maintain the same or provide better terms. It’s probably better for people to switch to a bank that is maybe not as good as ING but will probably be around for longer.

    • avatar
      Sarah

      I had a flashback this morning–when ING took over NetBank (where I had opened some accounts in 1998), ING did away with some of NetBank’s sweetest perks, like free overdraft on linked accounts. Bank takeovers usually don’t benefit the customers directly.

  3. avatar
    Lang

    Hey Ramit,

    This is great an all for you American People.

    But How about us Canadians?

    Yes, we have ING Direct Canada, so the Savings Account is good.

    But How about the credit card and the chequing account?

    • avatar
      Gregorydee

      The only problem I find with ING living in Canada are in the lack of customer support, simply because there is no walkin tellers or real hands on assistance. http://yep.it/Insoles

  4. avatar
    Jason

    Ramit,

    I have an ING account (with sub accounts) and I love it. I have one question though: Do you know of a way to set up one transfer from a checking account to the ING savings account and have it distribute that deposit across all the sub accounts by a percentage? Right now, I’ve been transferring money from checking to savings and then manually distributing the money to the sub accounts. I’d love to have this done for me automagically so there’s even less to think about.

    Thanks for your help and your wonderful blog!

    • avatar
      Dave

      You can set up automatic bi/weekly/monthly transfers of a set amount to each individual sub-account. This is what I do. If you wanted to put in a variable amount each week, then I wouldn’t know how to do that or if it’s even possible.

    • avatar
      Dave

      Look for “Automatic Savings Plan” under the My Accounts tab.

    • avatar
      BarbaraB

      Don’t be confused by Ramit’s use of the term “sub-account” like I was. They are not sub-accounts – they are independent accounts with different account numbers. If you transfer to the “main” account and then distribute to the other accounts, you may well run afowl of the 6 withdrawals a month limitation. I used to think the way you are and got a nasty-gram from ING – if I did it again they’d be required by law to terminate my accounts. A phone call with customer service corrected my thinking and I rearranged the withdrawals/transfers from my checking account so that the amount I wanted to transfer goes directly into each of the savings accounts. So, every 2 weeks, ING does 3 withdrawals from my BOA checking account and puts it into the 3 separate savings accounts.

    • avatar
      Jason

      Thank you everyone for the assistance.

      BarbaraB was right. I was thinking that I could transfer one lump sum to ING from BOA and then distribute it to the sub accounts. I will instead setup individual transfers from BOA to each individual sub account for my savings plans. Thanks everybody!

  5. avatar
    satish

    I am also a big fan of ING Savings account which I have been using for a coupleo of years now. Another advantage of ING savings is that you can see your investment account such as IRA at the same time. It makes it easier to automatically invest from your account.

  6. avatar
    Justin @ MoneyIsTheRoot

    I do agree, we certainly aren’t stashing money away in savings accounts to get rich off of the interest rates… a quarter of a percent ain’t gonna do much for you! I like automating finances, to a degree. I wrote an article on this not long ago, laying out the different aspects of my financial web that I like to automate, and those that I do not. I have been burned by phone companies and credit card companies more than once, which gives me a little hesitation when automating those types of bills.

  7. avatar
    Daniel

    Ramit,

    I’m reading your book right now and enjoying it. I’m on the chapter on starting a 401(k) and a Roth IRA. As far as a savings account goes, I have a Bank of America Savings Account. I put 10% of my bi-weekly paycheck into the savings account which amounts to about $150 every two weeks. I would love to subdivide my savings as you discuss, but with only $300/month, it seems like it will be difficult to put considerable amounts of money in each subcategory. What do you suggest?

    Putting 10% away and planning to start putting another 5% into a Roth means it may be tough to save more at this time in my life.

  8. avatar
    Cory Huff

    Been using the ING Orange account for more than a year now. It’s pretty fantastic. Our savings automation is going very well. Thanks for the great ideas Ramit!

  9. avatar
    Jim Mortensen

    Ramit,

    What about SmartyPig.com ?

    It has all of the benefits you listed, a higher interest rate, AND is more designed to push you to your financial goals goals rather than being a general savings account.

  10. avatar
    jhardesty

    I second Jimmys question.

    I’ve been using smartypig for awhile. They were taken over by compass bank a while back but they’re options for using the money you save is impressive. You can get cards to a wide variety of companies and they’ll even add on a certain percentage [usually around 4%]. So for example, if you have a savings goal for a trip, you can choose to cash out with a travelocity card and they add another 7%. Or you can choose half on a card half cash. its pretty good if you have very specific goals [trips, furniture, food]. Also links to your checking, you can set up bi-monthly or monthly transfers etc. Interest is compounded daily, paid quarterly.

  11. avatar
    Chris

    Do you think this may have a negative impact on this account?

    “Capital One Wins ING Direct USA ”
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304186404576389710699747604.html

  12. avatar
    David

    Does all this apply to your business finances too? Same CC, Savings & Checking?

    • avatar
      Ramit Sethi

      No. I hesitate to recommend a business account — even the ones I use — since I hate them all

  13. avatar
    Stan

    I’ve been with ING for over 6 years now and always been quite happy with them, decreasing interest rates notwithstanding. Can’t say that I am thrilled with the idea of Capital One taking over, but I’ll wait to see how things develop before making any further decisions.

  14. avatar
    Ryan K

    I have been using a service called Smarty Pig which is similar to ING, and offers the same ways to subdivide savings accounts with goals. Plus they have a refillable rewards card. I think it’s a solid alternative. One thing is that it’s somewhat difficult to actually get money out without transferring the entire amount saved in a goal.

  15. avatar
    Paul

    A minor rant, but taking a wait-and-see approach:

    There are 2 companies that, 10 years ago, I swore not to do business with: Chase, and Capital One. Note: BofA wasn’t as bad in 2000 as it’s been in recent years.

    Since then, Chase has bought 2 of my credit cards, closed 2 of those, and consolidated the credit into one card. They killed my credit history (and credit score) in the process. They also bought my savings and checking accounts through Washington Mutual. Since then, however, I have not had a single problem with them, and I actually like Chase.

    Capital One has always been on my dislike list for their exorbitant credit rates and obnoxious commercials. The bums in my town started yelling at people “What’s in your wallet?!” Well, as luck has it, they bought out my other credit card company. In 2008, as the recession flag began to wave, they cut my credit limit and jacked up my interest. I decided, to hell with them, and I closed my account with them. I didn’t want to run the risk of them screwing me over at some later date when I actually want to make a large purchase and need to depend on my good credit for attractive rates. I’ve never looked back since.

    Here, now Capital One has bought the US banking segment of ING. I have no doubt that they’ll cut the interest rates and probably require a minimum balance on new accounts, but I speculate. Like I said, I’m in a position of wait-and-see.

    For those of you who are on the fence and don’t yet have an ING account, you have at least 3 choices: Get an ING account and keep it no matter what. Look elsewhere and don’t get an ING account at all. Get an ING account and, if they change the terms, move it elsewhere.

    Apologies for the length.

  16. avatar
    tads

    Hate if you want, but betterment.com is a much better online “savings” account. Technically you are investing, but they boil it down so simple that high school students could do it. The interest rate that they get is phenomenal, and the connection to your checking account makes it just as simple to deposit or withdraw. The only downside to this is that there are no sub-savings account. If you would rather have upwards of 5 times the return on your money (I had about 8% last year) you could just keep track of your sub accounts in a spreadsheet.

    • avatar
      Margaret

      The higher interest rate is all very well and good, but the stock market is highly volatile in the short term. I wouldn’t want our emergency savings in an account highly dependent on stock returns because my husband might well lose his job at the same time as the market drops, leaving us in a perilous position.

      For relatively short term savings (new cars, emergency fund, saving for car insurance, etc.) I prefer a more secure, but lower return.

    • avatar
      Ramit Sethi

      Dude…that is not a savings account. Investment accounts are used for a totally different purpose

  17. avatar
    John

    Ramit

    Where do you store your emergency fund? Is it in another savings account with quicker accessibility?

    Any plans to write a post for money market funds, online brokers, CDs, etc?

  18. avatar
    Ryan776

    Hey Ramit…
    Great post man! I totally agree with this thought process. It makes everything so much simpler when you can look at your sub-savings account and see exactly how much money you have in each category, as opposed to having one savings account and tracking it in an excel sheet. Because every time you make a deposit, then you’d have to remember to make a note in your excel sheet to remind you what that deposit was for.

    So if your car windshield needs replacing – just take the money out of the car maintenance account and there’s still money in the vacation account to do a spur of the moment 4 day weekend in Vegas!!

    I’ve been doing this for a few years now…and it’s awesome! Stress has gone down knowing that I have money set aside when something comes up.

    I like your “Stupid Mistakes” account..hahahaha. I laughed at the title of that one…. that’s a good idea. You never know when you’ll need money to bail you out of jail for doing something stupid.

    LOL!!!

  19. avatar
    PG

    In response to comment number 3 [it seems there is no way to reply directly to that comment]:

    Ramit,

    I agree that there is no reason for ING Direct users not to wait and see what changes as a result of the sale to Capital One. It’s not like anything has gone wrong yet, and ING’s features are great. But you’ve said yourself in a Yahoo Finance interview with CreditCards.com that ” I also like naming names for excellent and terrible cards,” and went on to say “Capital One : I would never use their cards. I hear horror story after horror story from my readers about them.” In this forum alone, Paul [comment 25, above] gave another example. So perhaps it should not be so utterly mystifying that those same readers would turn to you for advice when they hear that ING Direct is being absorbed by Capital One. [see your article at: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Ramit-Sethi-Being-rich-money-creditcards-1701123327.html?x=0]. Maybe you were paraphrased? It happens all the time in interviews…

    You’ve notified readers about changes in your recommendations before. In fact this was the reason for your last post [http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/blog/my-favorite-credit-card/]. Readers benefit from these kinds of updates because banks and credit card issuers change their offers and their terms, sometimes for the worse. You recommend to readers that they get 85% of the way and move on. But in your credit card post, you said:
    “And so I began an exhaustive search for a new credit card. Because I spend a significant amount on my credit card, I expect significant rewards. Also, I consider it a fun game to find the 99.99999th percentile best card in the world.”

    It’s possible that the people emailing you thought that you’d done the same with online banking, and that you might know something they didn’t. In any case, thanks for the great post, and I hope that you’ll keep readers updated in case things change.

    Thanks again.

  20. avatar
    Ian

    Ramit,
    I really dig your three recommendations, but I was wondering if the awesomeness of the credit card and accounts, is true when traveling overseas (international ATMs, credit card purchases, etc). I am planning on doing some substantial international traveling this upcoming year, so I would love to hear your thoughts. Thanks.

  21. avatar
    trevor

    So are these subaccounts with ING actually separate accounts with separate account numbers?

    • avatar
      Lexi

      Yes

  22. avatar
    Samantha

    Do you have any thoughts about PNC’s Virtual Wallet Program? The Orange Savings Accounts w/ING Direct and the Virtual Wallet Program appear to be very similar.

    Thank you.

  23. avatar
    Dawn Abraham

    Great article I am going to look into this. Even though I’m happy with my savings account this sounds like it has more to offer. You never know when your going to find some great information when your not even looking for it.I just happened onto your site from something you posted. That’s the great thing about the internet it really informs you about so many great things that before we would have to rely on word of mouth from a limited amount of people.

  24. avatar
    Jon

    Would also like to hear some opinions on the PNC virtual wallet. After reading through all the comments I was surprised there were none.

  25. avatar
    Max

    Damn!
    Only the US branch if ING direct offers sub savings accounts 🙁
    I live in Italy. I checked ING direct Italy and every other italian online bank, looking for sub account services or banks that offer connection to Mint, or at least that can be connected to Quicken or similar.
    The few customer services that answered to my emails told that, yes, it is a good suggestion, but they are not planning to implement these services soon.
    No way to have that degree of automation (and freedom) I’m dreaming of since I read your book.
    Sometimes I hate my own country!

  26. avatar
    Alex

    Haven’t found any sub-savings accounts in Germany either… 🙁

  27. avatar
    Akin

    I’m surprised no mention of American Express nor Discover savings accounts. Both provide great saving rates and have a reliable business. Interest rates are slightly higher for Discover, but they process requests sloooowly. If you have patience for delayed gratification and want to penny pinch, then use Discover savings. American Express moves a lot faster and is better for people running a small business or tech startup. I also recommend them if you have zero patience.

  28. avatar
    Fede

    Hi Ramit and everybody.

    I was doing some research to open a online savings account. I saw MySavingsDirects.com has a good interest rate. Does anybody have a savings account with them? Any info will be appreciated.
    Thanks!

  29. avatar
    Nelson

    What about Europe ?

  30. avatar
    Taylor

    The one downside to the Capital One 360 is that you’re limited to a certain number of transfers per month. But this would be true for any savings account. I had to back off my automatic transfers to once per month to avoid hitting the limit.

  31. avatar
    Jimmy

    I moved checking and savings Ally. I setup 9 savings accounts, automate money from checking with no fees, get re-imbursed $10/month for ATM fees (though most ATMs are free) and I can manage everything in one place.

    • avatar
      Wije

      This (Ally savings/checking) is exactly what I do. I had a savings account with Ing/CapitalOne. Ally’s interest rates are much higher and they are much more flexible. I had much better experience with customer service with Ally that CapitalOne. Ing was good, but not after CapitalOne takeover.

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  33. avatar
    Kathryn

    Ramit, I’m a long-time reader and I have accounts at both ING/CapitalOne and Ally, and I highly recommend Ally. Their rates are always better and their customer service is great, plus they have a lot of great perks like no ATM fees (and reimbursement of other banks’ ATM fees). If you are going to make a recommendation as to “Best Savings Account” at least try Ally; in my experience it is superior.

  34. avatar
    JD

    Hard to find something stable to invest in. The best I’ve tried is growinvestmentcompany.com , I get returns of 10%. Also, acorns.com is another one of my favs.

  35. avatar
    CHRIS

    LOVE THIS ARTICLE….What do you recommend if I purchase everything I can with my amex (free vacations!) and pay it off every month through auto pay….I want to stop doing spread sheets, it’s annoying. It did get me out of over 50k in debt though…Now that I have pension, 401k, 457, stocks, savings, emergency fund and checking I want to really see is guilt free purchases. Because of previous debt 10 years ago i’ve become to rigid. Any ideas?

  36. avatar
    Sivan Berko

    Is there any option for non US citizens?
    You must be a US citizen or permanent resident with a valid Social Security number to sign up on Capital One to open an account.

  37. avatar
    Sonya

    Ramit, what are your thoughts on Ally bank’s savings account?

  38. avatar
    Hzhsbdsye

    But it’s not available where I live, I live in Dubai btw.

  39. avatar
    Amy

    Hey Ramit–

    I’m curious to know what you think about Simple Bank for either checking or savings.
    https://www.simple.com/

    Currently, I use Chase for my checking account (legacy decision I made a long time ago) and Capital One 360 for my savings account (on your suggestion).

    I’ve heard good things about Simple and am considering a move- would be interested in your thoughts.

    Thanks!
    Amy

  40. avatar
    Agnes

    Discussion is very informative and good. Thanks for sharing!

  41. avatar
    Ross McCay

    This advice may have been solid back before the ING merger or if you already have your account with Capital One. But in 2016, Ally is a better overall choice for a savings account. You can create sub-savings accounts and rename them just like with Cap One’s 360. The difference, however, you get a better yield and MUCH better customer service with Ally (Ally’s customer service is 24/7 with next to no wait time. They have live chat support too.).

    I did a lot of research on both beforehand and tried to set up a savings account with Capital One 360 first, based on Ramit’s advice. It seemed like a coin toss to me at the time, even though I knew Ally had a better yield. However, during the application process with Capital One, it told me I needed to call their security team to verify more information before I could complete my account. Fair enough. I give them a call and was connected directly to an automated machine with no chance of talking to a live person. The machine proceeds to tell me to leave my name and number where they will give me a callback within 24 hours. I left my name and number and never received a callback. I even called back a second time just in case for some reason my first message wasn’t audible.

    After Capital One’s security team never called back, I called their main customer service number thinking they would straighten this out. Instead, I was told only their security team can finish the identity verification process and to call them back again. What a joke! I would never go to a company that has that type of customer service (if you even want to call it that), especially when I have Schwab for my checking account, where they have excellent customer service. I couldn’t be happier with my choice with Ally for a savings account.

    Sorry for the chapter long response but thought I would share my experience.

  42. avatar
    Mike

    My wife and both have an ING Orange every day account linked to our 2.75% saver. It is a great account for your savings, no bank fees, no ATM fees 🙂

    They offer a $75 sign up promotion if you have a promo code, this one is valid for the month.

    This is a generic sign up feature of ING (google it so you know I’m not telling porkies) but you need a promo code as above.

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