Best High-Yield Checking Accounts for February 2024

Earning interest isn’t only for savings accounts. You can also earn a competitive annual percentage yield (APY) on your checking account balance with a high yield checking account.

We’ve reviewed dozens of options, examining their interest rates, fees, minimum deposit requirements, and features to identify the best high-yield checking accounts.

Read on to compare bank accounts that offer a higher-than-average APY while allowing easy access to your cash.

9 Best High-Yield Checking Accounts of February 2024

Here are the best high-yield checking accounts available right now:

1. Quontic High-Interest Checking

Quontic

Best: No Fee Account

  • APY: Up to 1.10% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $100
  • Bonus: No

Quontic is a digital bank headquartered in Manhattan that offers checking accounts, savings accounts, certificates of deposits (CDs), money market accounts (MMAs), and mortgages. You can sign up for Quontic’s high-yield checking account online in about three minutes, with a $100 minimum opening balance.

The account comes with mobile banking, online banking, and a Quontic debit card. It also provides access to a vast network of ATMs. You’ll get a Quontic Pay Ring that you can use for contactless payment in place of your debit card, as well.

The high-yield account has no monthly fees or overdraft fees, but it does charge a $5 fee if your account is dormant. To earn the full APY, you need to make 10 point-of-sale transactions of $10 or more per month using your account.

Quontic is well worth considering if you’re looking for an interest-bearing checking account that eliminates fees, as long as you’re comfortable with an online bank.

Quontic High-Interest Checking Logo

Quontic High-Interest Checking

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2. Axos Bank Rewards Checking

Axos

Best: Welcome Bonus

  • APY: Up to up to 3.30% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $0
  • Bonus: $300

Axos is an online-only bank that offers personal and business banking solutions. Formerly known as Bank of Internet USA, Axos has been providing digital banking products since the late 90s, making it one of the longest-running online-only banks around.

Axos has five different checking accounts to choose from, but its Rewards Checking option stands out for its high yield. As an account holder, you’ll get a debit card and access to Axos’ online banking and mobile app.

There are no overdraft fees or monthly fees to worry about, and the bank reimburses all domestic ATM fees, which isn’t always the case.

Axos’ top-tier APY is ultra-competitive, and you can reach it with several combined actions, like receiving direct deposits, making a minimum number of debit card purchases per statement cycle, maintaining an average balance in an Axos investment account, and using the account to make Axos loan payments.

If you’re looking to earn a welcome bonus on top of ongoing competitive interest, minimal fees, and unlimited ATM reimbursements from a user-friendly online bank, Axos should be on your shortlist.

Axos Bank Logo

Earn up to $300

for opening an Axos Rewards Checking account
Available nationwide

Learn how

3. Consumers Credit Union Rewards Checking

consumers

Best: Free ATM Access

  • APY: Up to 5.00% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $5
  • Bonus: No

Consumers Credit Union (CCU) is an Illinois-based credit union that offers online banking services nationwide. It’s unique in the sense that it’s open to anyone, anywhere, while most credit unions have community-based membership requirements.

Credit unions have a reputation for beating the national average when it comes to high APYs, and CCU is no exception. CCU offers one of the most competitive tiered APYs on the market, with feasible requirements. The only drawback is that the top interest rates are capped at $10,000, with higher balances earning 0.10%-0.20% APY.

Rewards Checking is a free account and comes with unlimited ATM fee reimbursements, unlimited check writing, and mobile banking. The NCUA provides deposit insurance for CCU, so all of your deposits are protected.

Consumers Credit Union is ideal for earning high interest on smaller account balances, with easy requirements. It’s also worth considering if you want a large ATM network and unlimited ATM reimbursements nationwide.


4. All America Bank Ultimate Rewards Checking

all america bank
Best For: Easy Requirements

  • APY: Up to 5.30% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $50 in person; $500 online
  • Bonus: No

All America Bank is a family-owned bank based in Oklahoma that’s been in business since 1927. It offers a full suite of personal and business bank accounts and loans, as well as agricultural financing.

Ultimate Rewards Checking is its main checking account, and it offers overdraft coverage, a debit card, mobile deposits, and $25 of foreign ATM transaction reimbursements each month.

Similar to Consumers Credit Union, All America Bank only pays its highest APY on part of your account balance. Once you exceed $15,000, the interest rate drops off. To qualify for the highest interest rate, you need to make 10 debit card transactions per month and opt into electronic statements.

Accounts are available nationwide, but you’ll only find branches in Oklahoma. It’s also worth noting that online applicants are required to make a $500 opening deposit.

While interest is capped on higher account balances, All America Bank is our pick for earning high APY with minimal effort. If you’re a frequent debit card user and don’t mind paper statements, you can earn industry-leading rates.


5. Lake Michigan Credit Union Max Checking

lake michigan cu
Best For: Additional Products

  • APY: Up to 3.00% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $5
  • Bonus: No

Lake Michigan Credit Union opened its doors in 1933. Today, it’s one of the nation’s largest credit unions and Michigan’s leading mortgage provider, extending membership to applicants across the country.

It offers a noteworthy lineup of financial products for individuals and businesses that includes several checking and savings accounts, credit cards, loans, and investment accounts.

The Max Checking account offers 3.00% APY on up to $15,000 account balances when you meet minimum requirements, including receiving direct deposits, making 10 debit or credit card purchases in a month, logging into mobile and online banking, and enrolling in eStatements.

The account has no minimum balance or monthly fees. To open the account, you’ll need to enroll as a credit union member with a $5 deposit.

Consider Lake Michigan Credit Union if you want to earn competitive interest on a portion of your checking account balance and have access to member perks and versatile financial products all in one place.


6. Presidential Bank Advantage Checking

presidential bank
Best For: High Account Balances

  • APY: Up to 3.62% APY
  • Monthly fee: $5, waivable
  • Minimum deposit: $500
  • Bonus: No

Founded in 1985, Presidential Bank is headquartered in Maryland, with branches throughout the DC area. While it may not be as well known as some of today’s digital banks, it broke ground by being the first bank to offer online-only accounts in 1995.

Presidential Bank offers a handful of checking and savings accounts, CDs, mortgages, and loans. Advantage Checking is one of its most popular accounts, and it can be opened in person or online.

The account features standards like online bill pay, mobile deposits, a Visa debit card, and notifications. It also offers perks like overdraft protection, a free order of checks, and ATM surcharge rebates.

To earn the highest interest rate, accountholders must make seven withdrawals and receive $500 of direct deposits per month. Presidential Bank pays its best APY on balances up to $25,000, which is higher than the cap for many of its competitors. It also pays a competitive 3.62% APY on balances exceeding $25,000.

We recommend Presidential Bank to individuals with high account balances. While there are monthly fees and minimum balance requirements, larger accounts stand to earn more interest here than with competitors.


7. SoFi Checking and Savings

sofi
Best For: Hybrid Account

  • APY: Up to 4.60% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $0
  • Bonus: Up to $300

SoFi is a popular lender and online bank that’s known for its competitive interest rates, minimal fees, and excellent user experience.

Unique from the other banks and credit unions on the list, it offers a checking and savings account combo with the potential to earn a solid APY.

There are no account fees or overdraft fees, and you can enjoy up to 15% cashback on purchases from local businesses, along with getting paid up to two days early. It’s also federally insured for up to $2 million through its network of FDIC-insured banks. What’s more, SoFi is known for providing competitive welcome bonuses to new account holders.

When you open a SoFi Checking and Savings account and enroll in direct deposits, you’ll earn 4.60% APY on funds in your savings vault and 0.50% on your checking balance.

SoFi is best if you want a streamlined account that lets you earn interest without jumping through hoops. While the highest rates are technically reserved for your savings balance, it’s easy to shift funds around to make the most of the account’s interest rates.


8. Aspiration Spend & Save

Aspiration

Best: Socially Responsible Option

  • APY: Up to up to 3.00% APY
  • Monthly fee: $0-$7.99
  • Minimum deposit: $10
  • Bonus: No

Aspiration is an online bank built on integrity and the idea that a financial institution can make money while positively impacting the world. The bank actively avoids investments that harm the environment and rewards customers for socially conscious shopping.

Aspiration Spend & Save is the bank’s primary account, which offers free access to 55,000 ATMs, up to 10% cashback on Conscience Coalition purchases, and a current APY of up to up to 3.00% on deposits.

The top APY is reserved for Plus members, who pay $7.99 per month. The rate is good for balances up to $10,000, and you’ll need to spend $500 or more per month with your Aspiration debit card to qualify. Non-premium members who meet the spending requirement earn 1.00% APY.

With a monthly fee and a low cap on its highest APY, Aspiration isn’t for everyone. However, it’s worth considering if you want your banking to have an impact and could benefit from cashback on socially conscious purchases.


9. Discover® Cashback Debit

Discover® Bank logo

Best For: Alternative Rewards

  • APY: Up to 1% cashback
  • Monthly fee: $0
  • Minimum deposit: $0
  • Bonus: No

With over 305 million cardholders, Discover is one of the biggest credit card brands in the US. Discover® Bank also offers deposit accounts, loans, and retirement accounts. The digital bank prides itself on a solid online banking experience, with millions of positive reviews in the App Store and Google Play Store.

Discover® Cashback Debit is Discover® Bank’s closest alternative to a high yield checking account. The account offers cashback rewards and serves as a low-risk alternative for individuals who don’t want to rack up credit card bills.

Discover® Cashback Debit isn’t a high-yield account in the traditional sense because there’s no APY, but you can earn 1% cashback on debit card purchases of up to $3,000 per month, so it has the earning potential of a high-interest checking account.

Plus, with Discover, you can still take advantage of a competitive rate through a linked online savings account. The checking account has no fees, free overdraft protection, two-day early pay, and 60,000 fee-free ATMs.

Discover is a solid alternative to the traditional high-yield checking options on the list, allowing you to easily rack up cashback on your purchases without worrying about minimum requirements.


How to Choose The Best High-Yield Checking Account for You

Your checking account is the primary bank account you use every day to pay bills and receive direct deposits, among other things.

When looking into the best high rate checking account, here are the main factors you should consider:

  • Annual Percentage Yield (APY): Annual Percentage Yield (APY) is the percentage of your balance that earns interest. This compounding interest is calculated annually and typically paid out monthly. It’s crucial to compare account rates before you choose an account to earn the most interest possible.
  • Qualifying requirements: With the best high-yield savings accounts, you’ll earn the same interest rate regardless of your balance. This isn’t always the case with interest-earning checking accounts. Before you sign up for a new account online, learn what’s required to qualify for a premium rate, from minimum debit transactions to monthly direct deposits.
  • Fees: Nothing cuts into an APY quicker than account fees. Between monthly maintenance fees, out-of-network ATM fees, and overdraft fees, even an industry-leading APY can be made irrelevant with a fee-heavy account. Choosing the right account with a minimal fee schedule will help keep the money in your account trending in the right direction.

How to Maximize Your High-Yield Checking Account

Here are a few tips to help you leverage your high-yield checking account to improve your personal finances:

  • Compare account options: When you’re looking for a high yield checking account, compare different banks and credit unions to find the best interest rates and account features that suit your financial needs.
  • Note minimum requirements: Your account may require you to meet a minimum balance requirement, set up direct deposits, or use your debit card regularly to earn the best rates. Make sure you understand the terms and meet the account’s requirements to secure the highest rates.
  • Avoid ATM fees: Look for high yield checking accounts that offer fee-free ATM access or reimburse ATM fees charged by other banks. This can save you money and ensure that you have easy access to your funds.
  • Monitor your account activity: Stay on top of your account balance and transactions to avoid overdraft fees and other charges. Most high yield checking accounts provide mobile banking tools to help you manage your account effectively.
  • Consider additional account benefits: Some high yield checking accounts come with additional perks such as identity theft protection, extended warranties, and discounts. This is especially true of credit unions. Assess these benefits and make use of them to make your account even more valuable.
  • Keep your options open: Periodically review your account to make sure it’s meeting your financial needs. If you find a better option with higher interest rates or improved features, consider switching to maximize your earnings.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are high-yield checking accounts worth it?

Usually, yes, but it depends on the account. In most cases, a high-yield checking account is a great way to earn solid interest while maintaining easy access to your cash. That said, it’s important to consider fees and other account features.

Can you lose money in a high-yield checking account?

No. Interest-bearing accounts don’t work like the stock market, where your shares’ value can rise and fall based on market conditions.

Interest rates certainly have the potential to drop over time, so your return might slow down with a lower rate, but your balance won’t go into the red because of interest.

Which bank has the highest interest rate for a checking account?

APYs are always moving. While one bank might hold the crown for the highest rate right now, it can change rapidly. Banks also have balance restrictions, so while it may seem like one bank has a higher APY than another, it might only apply to balances up to a certain amount, like $10,000.

A good practice when comparing APYs is to come up with an expected average balance in the coming year and do the math for what you would earn based on each rate and its restrictions and requirements.

Our Methodology

To provide our readers with the best recommendations for high-yield checking accounts, we did an extensive evaluation of dozens of banks, fintechs, and credit unions. Here are the factors that we weighed most heavily:

  • APY: First and foremost, we evaluated each account based on the interest rates it pays. In addition to noting a bank’s promoted interest rate, we dug into the fine print, assessing each account’s interest limits.
  • Minimum requirements: Along those lines, we looked into the criteria for earning each bank’s promoted interest rates, prioritizing banks with minimal requirements for receiving the best rates.
  • Fee structure: We also favored banks that charge no monthly account fees or ones that offer ways to easily waive fees. Similarly, we factored in common fees such as overdraft and ATM fees.
  • Account features: We assessed each account’s general features, such as online bill payments, mobile deposit, and early pay. We also looked into user experience and considered reviews from each bank’s customers.
  • ATM access: Additionally, we prioritized banks with extensive ATM networks. We also considered banks that offer ATM fee

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