• Monthly Fee: Free
  • ATM Fee: Doesn’t offer direct ATM access
  • Daily Withdrawal Limit: $3,000-$30,000
  • Deposits Fee: Free
  • Mobile App: Yes

minimum price:

Free

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2022's Complete EQ Bank Review

If you’re looking for an EQ Bank Review, you’ve come to the right place. EQ is a Canadian digital bank with one of the best savings interest rates and no monthly account fees. So let’s take a closer look at EQ Bank’s financial products and how they provide customers solutions to Canadians!

2022's Complete EQ Bank Review

minimum price:

Free

Visit Website
  • Monthly Fee: Free
  • ATM Fee: Doesn’t offer direct ATM access
  • Daily Withdrawal Limit: $3,000-$30,000
  • Deposits Fee: Free
  • Mobile App: Yes

Best For

Interest rates

Strengths

  • Exceptional interest rates
  • Responsive support
  • No banking fees or minimum balance requirements
  • Fund transfers are unlimited
  • Easy accessible to transfer money
  • Impressive GIC investments

Weaknesses

  • No debit card or access to ATMs
  • Available only for residents and citizens of Canada
  • Account offerings are limited

Overview

So, what is EQ Bank? Based in Toronto, EQ Bank is a trademark of Equitable Bank, Canada’s ninth independent Schedule I bank. EQ Bank offers commercial and residential real estate and personal banking services. 

Launched in January 2016 as the first digital bank in Canada, EQ offers its customers outstanding digital savings. Its primary focus is on two critical features for establishing a solid financial foundation: High-Interest GICs and the Savings Plus Account.

Today, EQ has nearly 250,000 customers, more than C$7 billion in deposits, and over 1000 employees. EQ Bank is also hugely popular for offering more competitive accounts because of no cost of brick-and-mortar branch management, no waiting in line and no separate chequing accounts.

Account Options

As an online financial organization, EQ Bank offers several competitive accounts that customers can use to earn high-interest rates on their cash deposits, as well as to strengthen their financial health. These are the accounts and the features EQ Bank provides:

Savings Plus Account

As a hybrid bank account, the EQ Bank Savings Plus Account combines many flexible features with chequing accounts. It includes unlimited transactions, including transfers, Interac e-Transfers, deposits, bill payments, and the ability to download statements.

The 1.65% interest rate that EQ Savings Account offers to every customer is consistently among the highest available in Canada. Customers can accept Interac e-Transfers, set up automatic bill payments, and open a joint account, which is ideal for couples and business partners. A maximum of three people can share one joint account.

The Savings Plus Account has a maximum balance of $200,000. Even though there is no EQ Bank debit card, cash withdrawals are possible by money transfers to another account.

Although no EQ Bank credit card is available, you can set up a credit card to withdraw funds from your Savings Plus Account.

Tax-Free Savings Account

A Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) provides its users with a tax-free savings account, making it a more popular option. It offers two types of savings accounts: savings accounts and GICs. To access a TFSA account, you must already have a Savings Plus Account

Then, to fund the TFSA, you must first deposit funds in the Savings Plus Account and then transfer them to the TFSA; the same procedure applies to withdrawals. Because of the lack of a joint account option, each EQ Bank customer may only have one TFSA account.

The EQ Bank TFSA interest rate is 1.65%, and you can withdraw as many times as you want without penalty.

RSP Account

Any EQ Bank customer who is of legal age and has a valid Social Insurance Number (SIN) can open an EQ Bank RRSP account. The Retirement Savings Plan (RSP) comprises an RSP Savings Account and an RSP GIC.

The RSP Savings Account, like the TFSA, has no fees and no minimum balance or contributions. Another similar feature is that the account can only be used by one person. We must emphasize that online withdrawals are not available, so you must deposit funds into your Savings Plus Account or an EQ Bank Joint Account. Deposits to the EG Bank RRSP account are tax-free, but withdrawals are not.

GIC

The EQ Bank’s Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) Account is one of Canada’s most secure ways to save money. EQ Bank GICs offer flexible term deposit investing options and competitive interest rates.

GICs are affordable because the minimum amount is $100, and the maximum is $100,000. EQ Bank rates start at 1.65% for a 3-month GIC and can go up to 4.85% for a 10-year GIC. The interest rates on registered and non-registered GIC accounts are the same.

One distinction between a GIC and a savings account is that cash withdrawals are not permitted until the account reaches maturity. Customers can only open a maximum of 20 GICs, which are non-redeemable, so if they are cashed out before the maturity date, they must pay a penalty.

Joint Accounts

In 2020, EQ Bank introduced the Joint Savings Plus Account. The option allows friends and families to save money in a shared account while earning a high-interest rate.

The joint accounts can hold up to three people and earn a 1.65% interest rate with no monthly fees, as well as a deposit of up to $500,000. It also includes free Interac e-Transfers and bill payments.

Customers of the Joint Account must be Canadian residents of the majority age. Furthermore, they have equal access to the shared account for paying bills, making deposits, and viewing transactions.

Refer a Friend

EQ Bank’s referral program allows you to earn money when your referrals open an account. To begin, EQ Bank will pay $20 for the first three referrals, $30 for the next four, and $40 for subsequent referrals. The maximum allowable amount is $500.

Simply click the “Refer a Friend” button to get your unique referral link and begin sharing.

Other EQ Bank account features

  • The payments feature allows you to send money abroad in multiple currencies. International Money Transfers are available with an EQ Bank transfer limit of $9,500 for most currencies and a real exchange rate lower than most Canadian banks.
  • Borrowing features Mortgage Marketplace for the best rates and access to over 2,000 mortgage products offered by Canadian lenders.
  • The EQ banking US Dollar Account offers a 1.25% interest rate on US money saved.

Is EQ Bank safe?

The most straightforward answer to this question is: Yes!

The CDIC insures EQ Bank’s deposits (Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation). Remember that the CDIC does not cover Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs). Wise powers international money transfers made with the Savings Plus Account.

For online security, EQ Bank uses two-step authentication to ensure that the account is opened by the same person and not someone else.

Customer Support

Because EQ Bank is an online-only bank, there are no physical branch locations. However, EQ Bank customer service is available seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to midnight Eastern Time, via live chat, phone, or e-mail.

How to Sign Up for EQ Bank’s Services?

As an online bank, you can sign up for EQ Bank’s services via computer, website, or mobile app. To open an account with the bank, you must be a Canadian resident, over the age of majority in your province, and have a Social Insurance Number. Customers can get assistance with this process by contacting EQ Bank representatives via phone or chatbot.

  1. Set up your email address and password.
  2. Following that, you must provide more specific information, such as your SIN number and occupation.
  3. Set up linked bank accounts once the online identity verification is confirmed.
  4. Once confirmed, you can deposit money into your EQ Bank account.

A government-issued photo ID, a proof of address document (if the photo ID does not show the person’s current address), and a Canada Post DSS number are required for registration.

Want to Consider Other Options?

If EQ Bank is not the best option for you, there are other options on the market to consider. We will discuss three of the most popular online-only banks.

Tangerine Bank

Tangerine has been known as a low-fee charging bank since its acquisition by ScotiaBank in 2012. The standard interest rate is 0.10%, significantly lower than the EQ Bank rates.

It also does not require a minimum initial deposit and offers a promotion for new clients that includes a maximum cashback bonus of $400 and 3.00% interest for a Savings Account for the first five months. Tangerine provides ATM services.

Scotiabank

Scotiabank is one of Canada’s largest banks in terms of deposits. It offers unique flexible options for students and seniors, but no high-interest savings accounts exist. It’s also worth noting that Scotiabank has one of the best credit card portfolios. Their International Money Transfer limit is slightly higher than EQ Bank’s, reaching up to $10,000.

Check out our Scotiabank review for more information on the Scotiabank offers.

Neo Financial 

If you’re looking for a high-interest savings account and an unlimited number of transactions, Neo Financial could be a good option for you. With Neo’s flexible high-interest savings account, you can earn up to 1.80% in interest, with no monthly fees and no minimum balance requirements.

If none of these options appeal to you, you can read our review of Simplii Financial.

Finishing Thoughts

EQ Bank is unquestionably an excellent choice for Canadians looking for online banking with a high level of security and great deals for its customers. It’s also ideal for people who need short-term savings, such as young families or young professionals. 

The EQ Bank interest rate is higher than the average rate, making it an excellent choice for your savings or investment plans.

So, if you are looking for a flexible yet secure and user-friendly digital bank, we hope this EQ Bank review provides you with all the information you require if you decide to try it out.

FAQ

How to close an EQ Bank account?

If you want to close or delete your EQ savings account, contact the EQ Bank Customer Care Team at 1-844-437-2265 (844-4EQ-BANK) or launch a live chat.

Who owns EQ Bank?

EQ Bank is a subsidiary of the Equitable Bank, Canada’s Challenger Bank. 

Can EQ Bank be trusted?

Because EQ Bank is owned by Equitable Bank, a member of the CDIC (Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation), EG Bank is also CDIC insured, which means your EQ Bank savings are safe with this bank. EQ Bank currently has over $7 billion in deposits and hundreds of thousands of customers who trust it.

Which is better, EQ Bank or Tangerine?

There are many factors to consider when comparing these two banks, but EQ Bank is the better option if you want better rates on savings and GICs. Tangerine, on the other hand, is a better option if you need banking products like mortgages and credit cards. So it comes down to personal preference.

Is EQ for a savings account good?

Yes, the EQ Savings Plus Account is one of the top accounts with a high-interest rate of 1.50%, so you can earn more interest on your savings compared to other financial institutions, as we explained in our EQ Bank review.

ABOUT AUTHOR

With an early start in journalism and years of work as a technical translator, Marija felt it was natural to blend the two. Passionate about news and research, she enjoys sifting through the data, researching new currents and the constant changes in our technologically and financially driven lives, as well as presenting the stats and facts to the readers so you don’t have to dig deep on your own.