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Article image for Bonus Interest – Is it really the bonus we think?

Posted by Andrew Waldhuter

Date posted:

Recently I visited a comparison website, which allowed me to compare the interest rate paid on financial institution’s savings accounts to find the best deal. I was surprised to find I could be earning between 0.85% and a whopping 3.00%, compared to my LLL Savings Account which is currently paying 0.80%*. So I decided to look a bit further into the detail of these offers, just to make sure I wasn’t being hoodwinked.

I looked at five savings products from financial institutions and found they all had a ‘standard interest rate’ and a ‘maximum’ (or bonus) rate. To achieve the maximum or bonus rate, the saver needed to meet certain criteria to qualify for the bonus interest. If the saver failed to achieve the requirements they’d only receive the standard interest rate.  Check the accounts I found summarised (anonymously) in the table below.

Top five savings account

Standard Interest (%)

Maximum Interest (%)

Requirements to obtain Maximum interest that month

Account 1

0.15

1.65

Deposit at least $20, plus perform five or more Visa Debit card transactions from linked transaction account/s per month.

Account 2

0.40

3.00

Make five transactions per month on a linked transaction account and a minimum one deposit and hold a higher balance than at the beginning of the month. Available to 18 – 29 year olds only.

Account 3

0.01

1.15

Minimum deposit of $200 and no withdrawals per month.

Account 4

0.35

1.55

Bonus rate only available for the first four months from account opening.

Account 5

0.01

0.85

Bonus interest when you make a single deposit of $10 or more in a month and no withdrawals or transfers – fees and charges may apply.

Let’s compare the above to all** LLL Savings Accounts.

Standard Interest* (%)

Maximum Interest* (%)

Requirements to obtain Maximum interest that month

0.80

0.80

NONE

**Whether the account is a Children’s, Personal or joint, Business or SMSF Cash Account the LLL deposit rate is the same on all LLL products.

The Moneysmart website explains aspects of ‘bonus’ savings accounts and has some great tips on finding the best savings account for an individual.

But for me, I think I will stick with my LLL Savings Account - it is simple to operate, pays a good interest rate, has absolutely no fees or charges and best of all has no ‘bonus interest hurdles’ that I’d need to achieve each month.

For more information on LLL Savings Accounts visit lll.org.au

This information is general in nature and does not take into account your personal situation, needs or objectives. You should consider if this product is right for you. *Interest rate is current at 7 October 2020 and is subject to change.

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