EQ Bank is an online bank offering highly competitive interest rates on saving accounts and GICs.
The Savings Plus account currently boasts a 1.25%* everyday interest rate, plus no daily banking fees, free Interac eTransfers® and more. In this EQ Bank Review, we’ll go over everything you need to know about this online bank!
A 100% honest EQ Bank Review
Many people have questions about EQ Bank because it’s a fairly new face on the Canadian online banking scene. However, they have a longer history than you might think! They also offer some of the best savings accounts and GIC rates available to Canadians.
EQ Bank is currently offering a 1.25%* everyday interest rate on their Savings Plus Account. This is one of the highest interest rates currently available from a Canadian bank.
Table of contents
- A 100% honest EQ Bank Review
- EQ Bank Canada features:
- Is EQ Bank safe?
- EQ Bank Savings Plus Account Review
- EQ Bank GICs
- There is no EQ Bank TFSA
- Transferring money to EQ Bank
- Making international money transfers using TransferWise
- Setting up your savings goals
- Does EQ Bank offer credit cards or loans?
- EQ Bank vs Tangerine Bank
- How to make the most out of EQ Bank
- Final thoughts
EQ Bank Canada features:
Your Savings Plus Account can be used for more than just savings. In fact, it actually works more like a blended saving and chequing account. With no fees, unlimited bill pay, and unlimited Interac e-Transfers®, EQ Bank is actually a great place to do a lot of your regular banking!
EQ Bank interest rate
EQ Bank is known for offering high interest on its savings accounts and GICs. Right now EQ Bank is offering 1.25%* everyday interest on its Savings Plus Account. Other EQ Bank rates include 1.80% for a 3-month GIC and up to 2.70% for a 10-year GIC.
Here is a full list of all the features and benefits you get with your Savings Plus Account:
- 1.25%* everyday interest
- No monthly banking fees
- No minimum balance
- Free unlimited Interac e-Transfers®
- Free unlimited bill payments
- Joint accounts now available
- Insured by CDIC
Is EQ Bank safe?
EQ Bank is definitely safe. The super high-interest rates on savings accounts and GICs make EQ Bank seem too good to be true, but they’re definitely for real. I’ve been banking with EQ Bank for years, and they’ve been nothing but awesome the whole time! EQ Bank is an established, trustworthy, recognized and insured Canadian financial institution.
Is EQ Bank covered by CDIC?
Yes! Equitable Bank is a member of CDIC, which means your deposits with Equitable Bank and EQ Bank are eligible for deposit insurance from the CDIC.
The Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC) protects deposits at member financial institutions against loss.
Who owns EQ Bank?
EQ Bank is a trademark of Equitable Bank. Equitable Bank has been around since 1970 and has over 800 employees with $32 billion under management. From this, you can tell that EQ Bank isn’t quite as “new” as they appear! With over four decades in the Canadian finance industry, Equitable Bank is an experienced player, even if EQ Bank is new.
As you can see, EQ Bank is a very safe place to put your money.
EQ Bank Savings Plus Account Review
The Savings Plus Account currently boasts a 1.25%* everyday interest rate. This is one of the highest interest rates available on savings accounts in Canada. Furthermore, the Savings Plus Account has zero fees, no minimum balance requirements, and unlimited Interac e-Transfers®.
Unsurprisingly, this makes EQ Bank one of the best places to put your savings. Whether you’re looking for a high-interest savings accounts to tuck your Emergency Fund, or you’re saving for a big purchase like a vacation or a house down payment, this is a great fit.
Can I use EQ Bank for my day-to-day banking?
The Bank Savings Plus Account is a savings account that functions like a chequing account. You can do most of your everyday banking with EQ Bank. In addition to the high-interest rate and no fees, EQ Bank also offers unlimited bill payments and free day-to-day transactions.
You can pay any bill that lets you set up online bill pay or will accept an Interac e-Transfers®. This means most expenses from student loan payments, credit cards, utility bills, and even rent can probably be paid from your EQ Bank account!
Is there a debit card?
There is no debit card for your Savings Plus Account, and you can’t a virtual card with Apple Pay. This means you’ll still need a no-fee chequing account for your everyday banking. In this case, Tangerine or KOHO are both great complements to fill in the gaps for what EQ Bank can’t provide.
EQ Bank GICs
In addition to offering an awesome 1.25%* everyday interest rate on the Savings Plus Account, EQ Bank also provides some killer rates on GICs. GIC stands for Guaranteed Investment Certificate and refers to a fixed-term investment.
EQ Bank offers GICs with terms ranging from 3 months to 5 years. The interest rates on these change frequently, and the best offers are usually promotional rates. It’s worthwhile to keep your eye out for a special offer – I recently got 3.00% on a 3-month GIC!
That said, outside of short-term promotions, EQ Bank does not offer the most competitive GIC rates. If GICs are an integral part of your savings strategy and you want the best rate, just make sure to compare EQ Bank to other banks GICs before you invest.
There is no EQ Bank TFSA
Sadly, EQ Bank does not currently offer registered accounts like the TFSA, RRSP, or RESP. I know, I know, we all want that killer 1.25%* everyday interest rate on tax-sheltered savings! EQ bank does not currently offer a TFSA so you cannot get their great interest rate tax-free.
The best place to set up a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA), Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP), or Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) is with a robo-advisor or self-directed broker. However, that doesn’t mean EQ Bank doesn’t deserve a spot in your financial plan!
EQ Bank is still a great place to park cash for short to long-term goals. I personally use EQ Bank for my car emergency fund, as well as extra cash I don’t immediately need but don’t want sitting in my chequing account where I might spend it.
Transferring money to EQ Bank
There are a few ways to put money into your EQ Bank account. You can set up direct deposit for part or all of your paycheque to your EQ Bank account. Or you can send yourself an Interac e-Transfers®, or use an electronic funds transfer to an existing external bank account.
One of the things I really like about EQ Bank is that when I initiate a transfer in EQ Bank to deposit money in my EQ Bank account via electronic funds transfer, it starts accumulating interest right away even though it will actually take a few days for those funds to deposit and become available. If you set up a direct deposit to your EQ Bank this will always happen for you and it’s a great way to ensure you don’t miss even a penny of interest.
You can link up to 10 external bank accounts! I don’t know what kind of wild personal finance wizardry you’re doing to have that many bank accounts, but it is nice to know that EQ Bank has your back.
Making international money transfers using TransferWise
Transferwise is a fast and low-cost way to send money around the world. It provides fast and secure international transfers that keep costs low by using mid-market rates. TransferWise works seamlessly with your Savings Plus Account.
Simply add TransferWise as a bill pay on your Savings Plus Account. This will let you send money quickly and directly to your TransferWise account. From there you can transfer it internationally as needed. 90% of TransferWise transfers are completed in less than 24 hours.
TransferWise seeks to make international money transfers cheap, fair, and simple. When you send money with TransferWise, they process the payment by making two local payments instead of one international transfer. Currency is exchanged at the real exchange rate. While EQ Bank is free, TransferWise does charge a fee for their service. You can learn more about Transferwise on their website.
Setting up your savings goals
This EQ Bank review wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t mention one of the best features: savings goals. You can set up a maximum of 4 distinct savings goals to track and maintain. EQ Bank will track your progress, and let you know what percentage you’ve completed so far.
I generally recommend everyone have separate savings accounts for separate savings goals. And it’s even better when you keep that savings separate from your everyday banking! EQ Bank is the perfect solution to your savings needs.
Once you set up your goal it will show up in that account when you click on it, but it will also show up in the little sidebar if you have multiple savings accounts, so you can see right at a glance how much progress you’re making on all your goals.
Does EQ Bank offer credit cards or loans?
EQ Bank currently does not offer any credit products. There is no EQ Bank credit card, line of credit, mortgages, or loan. You also cannot get overdraft for your Savings Plus account.
Remember the focus of EQ Bank is on saving money. They are not a full-service financial institution offering every product you need. EQ Bank wants to help you do one thing and one thing only: save money. And they do it well!
EQ Bank vs Tangerine Bank
One of EQ Bank’s main competitors in the Canadian banking space is Tangerine. Like EQ Bank, Tangerine offers no-fee daily banking, free unlimited bill pays, free Interac eTransfers, and high-interest savings. However, they also offer even more.
If you find EQ Bank’s Savings Plus Account features limiting and need more functionality, Tangerine is the best choice. With Tangerine, you can get all the things EQ Bank is missing: free Interac eTransfers, cheques, TFSAs and RRSPs, cash-back credit cards, and mortgages. Anything you can’t do with EQ Bank you can definitely do with Tangerine.
However, Tangerine does not offer the same incredible interest rate on your savings as EQ Bank does. If you’re looking for a place to save money, EQ Bank will still come out ahead. But there’s no rule that says you can’t have both a Tangerine Bank account and an EQ Bank account — I do!
You can read our full Tangerine Review here!
How to make the most out of EQ Bank
In conclusion, EQ Bank is an awesome no-fee, high-interest bank that is perfect for short and long-term savings goals. This is where you want to keep savings to get the best interest rate possible. EQ Bank is ideal for savings like a house downpayment, savings for a car, vacation, or other large purchase. The combination of no fees, high interest, and GICs make it the perfect bank for saving.
EQ Bank is a great place to save for…
I hope you enjoyed this EQ Bank review. And I hope you enjoy EQ Bank as much as I do! Leave a comment below letting me know what you’re saving for, and if there are any other financial reviews you’d like me to do next!
*Interest is calculated daily on the total closing balance and paid monthly. Rates are per
annum and subject to change without notice.