Keeping your money in a savings account ensures easy and free access to your cash.
If you want to make more money on your savings, there are several low-risk ways to earn more interest. These strategies can help you achieve your financial goals faster.
How to Earn More Interest on Your Money
It’s time to put your savings to work. Here are some top ways to get free money from your extra cash.
1. High-Interest Savings Accounts
A high-yield savings account lets you earn one of the best interest rates without charging fees or penalties.
You can get a competitive ongoing interest rate and won’t pay early redemption fees like other high-yield investments.
Since interest rates are currently increasing, savings accounts may offer higher ongoing interest rates than locking in today’s rates for a long-term bond or CD.
For example, a CIT Bank Savings Connect account can be one of your best options to earn a competitive rate 15 times higher than the national average1. Plus, you can avoid traditional banking fees.
Some of the best Savings Connect features include:
- Earn 4.20% APY2 on your entire savings balance (as of March 16, 2023)
- Daily compounding interest
- No account opening or ongoing monthly fees
- Up to $30 in monthly reimbursements for ATM fees charged by other banks
- Minimum $100 opening deposit
CIT Bank is a division of First Citizens Bank & Trust Company, Member FDIC3.
The CIT Savings Connect program also gives you access to a CIT Bank checking account. This free online checking account easily links with your Savings Connect account to transfer funds, mobile deposit checks, and earn more interest.
2. Bank Bonuses
If you are considering opening a new bank account, bank promotions can be an easy way to earn cash rewards. Most offers let you earn between $50 and $300 in bonus cash when you complete certain activities.
Typically, you’ll need to open a new checking or savings account. Then, you’ll have to meet specific offer requirements.
These requirements can include:
- Setting up direct deposit
- Maintaining a minimum balance for a specific time period
- Completing certain spending activities
The offer conditions differ by bank and account type. For example, savings account bonuses generally require you to maintain a certain amount of money in your account for a specified period of time.
Checking account bonuses are more common. At a minimum, you will likely need to receive qualifying direct deposits. You may also need to complete a certain number of debit card purchases.
You can search for offers online. It’s also possible to receive invitation codes by email or physical mail. These personalized mailbox money offers can be more valuable than what’s available to the general public.
3. CD Ladders
Bank certificates of deposit (CDs) let you earn a fixed interest rate for a specified time period. These accounts are less risky than bonds. Additionally, they are FDIC-insured.
CDs may have higher rates than traditional savings accounts since you’re pledging your cash for a specific investment term.
CD ladders are an effective strategy to combat these downsides. They help you earn the best rates and allow you to access your money more easily.
To create a CD ladder, you buy several CDs with different maturity dates.
For example, you could buy four CDs with the following terms:
As each one matures, you reinvest your proceeds into a new term. This way, you continually have a maturing CD and exposure to various terms and interest rates.
Plus, if you need access to cash, your money won’t be tied up in just one CD. If your ladder maturity dates are staggered, you’ll have opportunities to access money regularly as your CDs come due.
4. Money Market Accounts
Money market accounts blend the best benefits of high-interest savings accounts and checking accounts.
For example, the same account earns interest on deposits and lets you withdraw money with a debit card or money-sending app. Some accounts may even let you write checks or enroll in online bill pay.
Furthermore, these accounts have FDIC insurance. This is similar to savings, checking and CD accounts.
While a money market account offers more flexibility than online savings accounts when it comes to accessing your funds, the interest rates may not be as high.
Money market accounts can be an excellent place for your emergency fund or a specific savings goal that requires periodic withdrawals.
Since bank account interest rates continually fluctuate, you may consider having this account and a high-yield savings account. Then, you can shuffle funds between accounts to receive a better rate.
5. Rewards Checking Accounts
Rewards checking accounts can pay interest rates that are potentially higher than high-yield savings accounts. However, you usually need to complete several monthly activities to earn the highest rates.
The requirements vary by the bank but can include:
- Receiving qualifying direct deposits
- Making a minimum number of debit card transactions
- Maintaining a minimum ongoing account balance
Depending on the bank, you could earn between 1% and 3% APY on your account balance by satisfying these requirements.
What if you want to avoid the hassle of completing the minimum activities each month? You can find free checking accounts that award interest on your account balance without any required activities.
However, interest-bearing checking accounts almost always have lower yields than high-interest checking accounts.
In addition to awarding interest, you might also be able to earn cash back on debit card purchases. While you can effortlessly earn rewards, these accounts usually have monthly limits on interest income and debit card rewards.
There are multiple ways you can get more interest on your savings with minimal risk and no fees. You can dabble in several ideas to earn the best rates for your short-term and long-term money goals.
While these strategies may not have the same long-term income potential as investing in stocks, you can make your cash reserves more productive.
Better yet, you can also easily withdraw your cash for expenses or other investment ideas for monthly income.