Investing

Best HISAs (High Interest Savings Accounts)

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  • Mar 3rd, 2017 8:27 pm
[OP]
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Aug 4, 2014
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Best HISAs (High Interest Savings Accounts)

I was checking the current HISA options for my parents-in-law: https://www.highinterestsavings.ca/chart/

Best 3 seem to be:

2% EQ Bank Savings Plus Account https://www.eqbank.ca/personal-banking/features-rates

1.95% Alterna Bank High Interest eSavings Account https://www.alternabank.ca/Personal/Eve ... /eSavings/

1.75 % Oaken Savings Account https://www.oaken.com/gic-rates/

Personally, I like Alterna Bank because:

a) they have two branches nearby (as I think parents would feel better if there's at least an option to go in person) and
b) have TFSAs with the same rate (if they ever decide to open them as well :))

My husband and I have eSavings account at People's Trust @ 1.45%, but it would be mission impossible to convince him to move the money for an extra 0.5% (especially since it could change any time) Used to be the best option when we opened it, but times change :)

Anybody uses Alterna/would advise against it/suggest something else?

Thank you in advance :)
Last edited by freilona on Feb 11th, 2017 7:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
19 replies
[OP]
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Aug 4, 2014
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Thank you, Mike! Do you happen to know if they allow joint accounts? I swear I saw it last night that both parties need to open an account and then fill out some form to join, but now can't find it anywhere.. maybe confused with another bank or CU (as I looked at a few..)

Upd. Found the answer there: alterna-bank-high-interest-esavings-account-1954891 :)
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May 18, 2015
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freilona wrote: I was checking the current HISA options for my parents-in-law: https://www.highinterestsavings.ca/chart/

Best 3 seem to be:

2% EQ Bank Savings Plus Account https://www.eqbank.ca/personal-banking/features-rates

1.95% Alterna Bank High Interest eSavings Account https://www.alternabank.ca/Personal/Eve ... /eSavings/

1.75 % Oaken Savings Account https://www.oaken.com/gic-rates/

Personally, I like Alterna Bank because:

a) they have two branches nearby (as I think parents would feel better if there's at least an option to go in person) and
b) have TFSAs with the same rate (if they ever decide to open them as well :))

My husband and I have eSavings account at People's Trust @ 1.45%, but it would be mission impossible to convince him to move the money for an extra 0.5% (especially since it could change any time) Used to be the best option when we opened it, but times change :)

Anybody uses Alterna/would advise against it/suggest something else?

Thank you in advance :)
Another option is Tangerine at an unadvertised rate of 1.6%...this is a rate you must call in and ask them to apply every 3 months. Not the end of the world as you normally dont wait more than a minute or two with them on the phone.

I've been calling in every 3 months for the last 2 years and asking them to match EQ bank. They simply then offer the 1.6% rate as their best match.
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Oct 3, 2005
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nikels21 wrote: Another option is Tangerine at an unadvertised rate of 1.6%...this is a rate you must call in and ask them to apply every 3 months. Not the end of the world as you normally dont wait more than a minute or two with them on the phone.

I've been calling in every 3 months for the last 2 years and asking them to match EQ bank. They simply then offer the 1.6% rate as their best match.
Really? This works? Just price match with EQ bank?
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Oct 3, 2006
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Good thread. I'm also thinking about opening a HISA and the top 2 choices seems to be EQ and Alterna. Can someone list the pros and cons of each? It would be highly helpful.
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May 18, 2015
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hello99 wrote: Really? This works? Just price match with EQ bank?
Yup! Its not quite a match as EQ is 2% but its enough for me to stay and not go through the trouble of switching
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Mar 8, 2013
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Aznsilvrboy wrote: Good thread. I'm also thinking about opening a HISA and the top 2 choices seems to be EQ and Alterna. Can someone list the pros and cons of each? It would be highly helpful.
Some cons for EQ are:
1. No joint accounts
2. No registered accounts
Deal Addict
Jan 1, 2004
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Thanks so much. Just called Tangerine and they gave a 2% rate for 90 days. I set a reminder to call them every 3 months. Not too bad. :)
nikels21 wrote: Another option is Tangerine at an unadvertised rate of 1.6%...this is a rate you must call in and ask them to apply every 3 months. Not the end of the world as you normally dont wait more than a minute or two with them on the phone.

I've been calling in every 3 months for the last 2 years and asking them to match EQ bank. They simply then offer the 1.6% rate as their best match.
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Jan 20, 2009
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MoneyHypeMike wrote: My only problem with Alterna is that you need to call them to transfer from your TFSA to your other accounts. Otherwise no complaints for a no free account (eChequing and eSavings).
Same with BMO / BMO Investorline. The account link is pretty useless.
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Oct 3, 2005
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sfrancis wrote: Thanks so much. Just called Tangerine and they gave a 2% rate for 90 days. I set a reminder to call them every 3 months. Not too bad. :)
I didn't get a chance to call this weekend but will try to tonight...they applied the rate to all your subaccounts?
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Jan 1, 2004
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hello99 wrote: I didn't get a chance to call this weekend but will try to tonight...they applied the rate to all your subaccounts?
Sorry not sure what SubAccount is as I only have one account .
Deal Fanatic
Oct 1, 2004
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Personally I had a problem with Alterna's esavings account, couldn't get a decent customer rep on the phone, had to wait for a supervisor to callback, and still waiting.

Meridian is also 1.5%
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Feb 25, 2005
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Called tangerine today and the rep said they don't match rates.
[OP]
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Aug 4, 2014
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Opened two Alterna Bank accounts online today for my in-laws. TFSA for my father-in-law went through fine, but my mother-in-law received an email that there was an issue with her eSavings account (that we'll need to make joint after both accounts are opened) and the representative will call her in 1-2 business days. She doesn't have a driver's license or credit cards in her name, so most likely they'd want some proof that she exists :)

Called Alterna with a TFSA successor holder & beneficiary question. A few minutes on hold (on Saturday afternoon), then a very friendly young female answered my question (correctly - the beneficiary designation form was indeed attached to the confirmation email and had both options, which wasn't clear from their website that only mentioned beneficiary)

Will update how it goes with eSavings (opening and joining)
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Ive had a great experience so far with Alterna. The only issue I had was my debit card was eaten at a First Nation's Bank ATM (part of Exchange ATM network). Apparently, Alterna needs you to complete the card activation first. I forgot to! I was able to obtain the card from the bank later.
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Feb 26, 2009
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I think meridian doesn't let you move more than 10000$ a day from them to another bank
[OP]
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Aug 4, 2014
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Upd. from Feb 18 re: opening Alterna accounts for in-laws

Set up of TFSA account for my father-in-law was completed today (he's got the login and the initial deposit was withdrawn from his bank account) It took 9 business days. Nobody called my mother-in-law yet about eSavings (I called last Saturday, the agent said "On Monday the latest somebody will call" as he wasn't authorized to complete the set up) They were getting a bit nervous (were hesitant to move the money from their "brick and mortar big bank" to begin with), so glad at least one account is done.
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Feb 4, 2017
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Opened a TFSA and regular HISA with Alterna awhile ago - so far is working out fine, no issues transferring back n forth from a big bank.

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