Kids’ Savings: Bank Accounts For Children
When it comes to kids bank accounts you may need to decide what the aim is; do you want to teach your child to save or is the focus more on doing some serious saving and interest earning? Although not without restrictions, there are a host of banking options for kids. It’s a fun time to teach kids about savings, and there’s some serious interest to earn as well. You can learn more about kid's savings accounts and discover some of the bank account options right here.
What Features To Look For In A Kids' Bank Account
Starting your children off early with banking can be a rewarding venture, since most banks are fiercely competing for new savers’ business. If a bank can grasp a saver young, they have a better chance of keeping a customer for life. In essence, some things to look for are:
- No monthly fees - your child’s savings will probably begin small, so you definitely want to avoid fees
- A high rate of interest – it sounds obvious, but there are some really competitive rates available currently for kids and, just as a small savings fund suffers significantly from fees, it benefits from a higher interest rate
- Any access limitations – do you have constant free access to your funds or will you be charged if you withdraw?
The great benefit of a bank account for kids is that they can get the full experience, including walking up to the bank’s counter and depositing funds themselves, which can be a boost in both confidence and their understanding of finance.
High Interest Savings Accounts For Children
If you do want to teach your kids the art of saving but don’t want to compromise on savings return by allowing your children to manage their own savings, you could consider a standard high interest savings account. This option will depend on the age of your child, as commonly there is an age restriction for standard savings accounts. For example the UBank USaver account can only be opened by someone over the age of 18. BankWest’s TeleNet Saver, for example, can’t be issued to anyone under the age of 12. Generally, if a child is saving themselves they probably won’t have too much money to begin with, so fees should definitely be avoided. Luckily, you should find that most kids’ bank accounts don’t have monthly fees - although check out what other fees may apply. Furthermore, a lot of kids’ bonus accounts have strict rules around depositing in order to qualify for high interest.
The list below isn't in a ranked order nor is it every option of childrens' bank accounts in the market. We've included links to each bank's website so you can do some closer investigation on the interest rates and other terms and conditions.
Childrens Savings Accounts
Bankwest Kids' Bonus Saver
To see the current interest rate on the Bankwest Kids' Bonus Saver click here. This account offers bonus interest if total deposits that month are between $25 - $250 and no withdrawals are made that month. Otherwise the base interest rate will apply.
The Bankwest Kids' Bonus Saver has to be linked to a Bankwest Children's savings account. The total amount in Kids' Bonus Saver is swept across to this linked account every 12 months, which has a lower interest rate than the bonus rate available on the Kids' Bonus Saver. The Bankwest Kids' Bonus Saver is available for children up to 15 yrs old.
Commonwealth Bank - Youthsaver
To see the current interest rate on the CBA Youthsaver click here. If any deposits are made and no withdrawals in that month then a bonus interest rate applies on the Youthsaver account. There is no limit on deposit amounts but if these conditions are not met, only a minimal interest rate will apply.
Other features for kids
Every child under 10 gets automatic membership to the Dollarmites club, which offers games, activities and tips to make saving fun. There is also an online playground, 'Coinland', designed especially for kids, with more games and downloadable content such as colouring in pictures.
The Commonwealth Bank also runs the school banking program which is available in many schools throughout Australia. This encourages children to save, through offering options to deposit funds at school, and giving kids 'Dollarmite' tokens for deposits, which can be redeemed for prizes such as moneyboxes, wallets and more.The Youthsaver account is available for customers up to 18 years of age. If the applicant is under 16 years old then parental permission is required.
St.George - Incentive Saver
To see the current interest rate on the St. George Incentive Saver click here. There is a bonus interest rate if any deposits are made and no withdrawals in that month. There are currently no limits on deposit amounts. But if these conditions are not met, only a minimal interest rate applies.
Other features for kids
Kids under 13 years old with an Incentive Saver Account or Complete Freedom Student Account are automatically enrolled in the Happy Dragon club. Bi-Annual newsletters with activities and information are sent out to members of the Happy Dragon kids club. There are no age limits on obtaining an Incentive Saver account.
NAB - Smart Junior Saver
NAB indicates on their website that to apply for a NAB Smart Junior Saver you need to do it in person in the branch or you can give them a call on the phone on 13 13 12. When you speak to them, check on their current interest rates.
NAB does have a bonus interest rate which is applied if any deposits are made and no withdrawals in that month. There are no limits on deposit amounts. If these conditions are not met, a basic interest rate applies. The NAB Smart Junior Saver account is available for customers up to 18 years of age.
ANZ - Progress Saver
ANZ has some special extras for kids if they apply for the ANZ Progress Saver. To check the current interest rate speak with ANZ or click here. A bonus interest rate is added to the base rate if any deposits over $10 are made and no withdrawals in that month. There are no limits on deposit amounts. If these conditions are not met, a minimal interest rate applies. The ANZ Progress Saver for children is available for customers up to 18 years of age.
Westpac - Kids Reward Saver
Westpac has a version of their Reward Saver account for children under 12. Click here to see the current interest rates. A bonus rate is added each month if any deposits are made and no withdrawals in that month. Westpac doesn't have any limits on deposit amounts for the kids' account. If these conditions are not met, only a minimal interest rate applies. The Westpac Reward Saver for kids is available for customers up to 12 years of age.
Suncorp - Kids Savings Account
To see the interest rates on the Suncorp Bank Kids' Savings account click here. Suncorp pays a bonus interest rate if any deposits over $20 are made and no more than 1 withdrawal is made in that month. There are no limits on deposit amounts but if the conditions are not met, a minimal interest rate applies. Available for customers up to 18 years of age. There are also some different savings account options for kids who are over 12.
Other features for kids
Suncorp also has an interactive website designed for kids, which has games and downloadable content, plus an option for the child to donate to charity. Here iit is: http://www.suncorpkids.com.au/
IMB - Zoo Account
IMB has a special account for kids, youth and students called the Zoo account. Click here to see the current interest rates. IMB pays a bonus interest rate if any deposits over $10 are made and no withdrawals in that month. There are no limits on deposit amounts but if these conditions are not met, the much lower base interest rate applies. The IMB Zoo account is available for customers up to 12 years of age.
Other features for kids
IMB gives a welcome pack to kids, which includes a free money box. They also give out a Zoo Rewards Card, which allows kids to collect cool stickers and enter competitions with the chance to win $100 each month.
All of the accounts mentioned offer a bonus interest rate, with conditions attached. If you’re worried about missing the regular deposits on bonus kids accounts (and therefore the high interest), you can set up automatic payments into the account from another account. If you don't want a dedicated kids' savings account you can also compare high interest savings accounts.