3 Reasons to Have Multiple Savings Accounts
Struggling to choose between two savings accounts? Why not pick both?
So you've got some extra cash and you need a place to stash it that's a little safer than under your bed. A savings account is the go-to option for most people, but it's not always easy to find one that can suit all your needs. If any of the reasons below appeal to you, you might be better off opening multiple savings accounts instead.
1. You can keep money for your financial goals separate
This is one of the main reasons I have multiple savings accounts. As a freelancer, I have to pay estimated taxes throughout the year, so I keep my tax money in a separate savings account so I don't accidentally spend it.
You could use a similar approach if you're saving for multiple financial goals. One savings account could hold money for a car, another for a down payment on a house, and another for your emergency fund. Or if you have some joint financial goals with your spouse, you could have one savings account for family plans and one for personal goals.
If you'd rather not open a bunch of savings accounts to keep your money separate, you could look for a budgeting app. This could help you set up a digital envelope system instead. Or you could just keep careful track of how much money to set aside for each goal.
2. You can keep all of your money secure
For those with ample savings, multiple savings accounts are often essential for keeping your money secure. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) only insures savings accounts up to $250,000. So if you have more than $250,000 in savings, you'll need to keep your funds at multiple banks to fully protect your money against bank failure.
Of course, if you have that much extra cash, it may not be advisable to keep it in a savings account at all. If you don't think you'll need it in the next five to seven years, consider investing your money instead. While there's some risk involved with this, you could earn a much greater return through investing than you could by leaving your money in a savings account.
If you do think you'll need your funds in the next few years, a savings account is a better option. The stock market can be volatile in the short term, and if you need to pull your money out at a certain time, you may have to take a loss. So it's best to keep money for short- to medium-term financial goals in a savings account. Same goes for your emergency fund.
3. You can capitalize on the highest APYs out there
The annual percentage yield (APY) on a savings account can vary from bank to bank. Online-only banks offer much higher rates than their brick-and-mortar cousins do, but even among this group, there's a lot of variety in terms of available rates, and they change over time.
Opening savings accounts at multiple banks gives you the freedom to move your money around to wherever it can earn the most interest. If one savings account drops its APY, you can move your funds out of it and into a different account with a higher rate until the first one's APY comes back up again.
One thing to keep in mind is that some savings accounts require you to maintain a certain balance to earn the highest APY or to keep your account open. This could be problematic if you don't have a ton of savings. Look into any balance requirements associated with the account you're considering before you open it.
Multiple savings accounts aren't for everyone
There's nothing wrong with sticking to a single savings account if none of the reasons above apply to you. A single savings account allows you to easily manage all your money in one place. And you can still earn a high APY if you choose a high-yield savings account. It's all about what works best for your lifestyle.
These savings accounts are FDIC insured and could earn you 11x your bank
Many people are missing out on guaranteed returns as their money languishes in a big bank savings account earning next to no interest. Our picks of the best online savings accounts can earn you 11x the national average savings account rate. Click here to uncover the best-in-class accounts that landed a spot on our short list of the best savings accounts for 2024.
Our Research Expert
We're firm believers in the Golden Rule, which is why editorial opinions are ours alone and have not been previously reviewed, approved, or endorsed by included advertisers. The Ascent does not cover all offers on the market. Editorial content from The Ascent is separate from The Motley Fool editorial content and is created by a different analyst team.
The Ascent is a Motley Fool service that rates and reviews essential products for your everyday money matters.
Copyright © 2018 - 2024 The Ascent. All rights reserved.