EQ Bank Review

EQ Bank or Equitable Group Inc. is a growing Canadian financial services business that operates through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Equitable Bank. Through its proven branchless approach and customer service focus, Equitable Bank has grown to approximately $32 billion of Assets Under Management.

Furthermore, EQ Bank is the country’s ninth-largest independent Schedule I bank and offers a diverse suite of residential lending, commercial lending, and savings solutions to Canadians. The Bank does not have cheques or a debit card, you need another account to start with them.  

In a nutshell, EQ Bank is a Canadian digital bank that provides a range of financial products and services to customers through its online platform. The bank is known for offering high-interest rates on its savings accounts, which can help customers grow their savings faster than they would with traditional brick-and-mortar banks.

Some of the key features of EQ Bank include:

  • High-interest savings accounts
  • Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs)
  • Chequing account
  • User-friendly website and mobile app
  • Convenient account management and transactions
  • 24/7 customer support through email and phone
  • Deposit insurance up to $250,000 per depositor provided by Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario (DICO)

EQ Bank is a division of Equitable Bank, which is a Schedule I Canadian bank but operates only digitally. So customers do not have access to physical branches and all transactions are processed through digital channels. However, this allows EQ Bank to offer the best savings rate and the convenience of online banking.

It’s important to note that EQ bank does not offer mortgages, credit cards or loans, so it might not be the best fit for everyone. It would be wise to compare EQ bank with other options available in the market and decide what’s the best for you, before opening an account with them.

About EQ Bank

EQ Bank is a Canadian digital bank that offers a variety of financial products and services, including savings accounts, GICs, and chequing accounts. The bank is known for its high-interest rates on savings accounts, which are often higher than those offered by traditional brick-and-mortar banks.

One of the key features of EQ Bank is its online platform, which allows customers to easily manage their accounts and make transactions from anywhere. The bank also has a mobile app that can be used to deposit cheques, pay bills, and view account balances and transaction history.

In addition to its savings accounts, EQ Bank also offers GICs (Guaranteed Investment Certificates) which are a type of investment that offers a guaranteed return on your principal investment. EQ Bank offers flexible GIC terms ranging from 30 days to 5 years.

EQ Bank is a member of the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario (DICO), which means that deposits held in an EQ Bank account are insured for up to $250,000 per depositor.

Furthermore, EQ Bank is a Division of Equitable Bank, a Schedule I Canadian bank and has no physical branches, all transactions are processed only through digital channels.

How To Open An EQ Bank Account?

You’ll have to meet the below criteria to open an EQ Bank account

  • Be a Canadian resident

  • Meet the province’s age of majority (18 or 19 years old, depending on where you live in Canada)

  • Have a Social Insurance Number

To open an EQ Bank account, you can follow these steps:

  • Go to the EQ Bank website and click on the “Open Account” button.
  • Select the type of account you want to open. EQ Bank offers a variety of accounts including savings accounts, chequing accounts, and GICs.
  • Provide your personal information, including your name, address, and contact details. You will also be asked to provide proof of identity, such as a government-issued ID.
  • Review and accept the bank’s terms and conditions and any applicable fees.
  • Fund your account. You can do this by linking an existing bank account or by mailing a cheque.
  • Once your account is funded and your identity is verified, your EQ Bank account will be activated and you can start using it.

Please note that EQ Bank may have different or additional steps on their website and the process may change over time and based on location, please make sure you check their website for more accurate instructions.

eq bankIs EQ Bank The Right Choice?

First of all, EQ Bank makes banking extremely simple and easy. Their Savings Plus Account helps you get the most out of your money, with no monthly fees, no minimum balances, and no unnecessary fine print. 

It’s a high-interest savings account that you can use like a chequing account for everyday banking such as paying bills and transferring money, without any hassles.

Plus, transfer your money when you need to – with free unlimited Interac e-Transfers per month and free unlimited Electronic Fund Transfers.

  • Locally Grown – Born in Canada and helping Canadians meet their financial goals for over 45 years

  • Strength in Numbers – $31 billion in assets under management and over 800 employees

  • Safety First – All deposit products are eligible for CDIC deposit insurance

EQ Bank

What Account Types Does EQ Bank Offer?

EQ Bank offers a variety of account types, including:

  1. Savings Plus Account: This is a high-interest savings account that allows you to earn a competitive interest rate on your deposits, with no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements. It also comes with a free Interac e-Transfer service.

  2. EQ Bank Chequing Account: This account offers free transactions, free Interac e-Transfers and no monthly fees, but it does not offer cheques.

  3. GICs (Guaranteed Investment Certificates): EQ Bank offers GICs with terms ranging from 30 days to 5 years, allowing you to earn a guaranteed rate of return on your investment.

  4. EQ Bank Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA): A Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) is a type of savings account that allows you to earn investment income tax-free. EQ Bank offers high-interest TFSA savings accounts with no fees or minimum balance requirements.

  5. EQ Bank RSP (Registered Retirement Savings Plan) savings account: It is a savings account designed for retirement savings and is similar to the regular savings account. You can put your pre-tax money into an RSP savings account, and it will grow tax-free until you withdraw it, usually at retirement.

EQ Bank’s Savings Plus Account Details 

EQ Bank’s Savings Plus Account is a high-interest savings account that allows you to earn a competitive interest rate on your deposits. The account is designed to help you grow your savings quickly and easily.

Some key features of the EQ Bank Savings Plus Account include:

  • High-Interest rate: The account offers a competitive interest rate, which is subject to change.

  • No monthly fees: There are no monthly fees associated with this account, so you can keep more of your money working for you.

  • No minimum balance requirement: You can open an account with any amount, and there is no minimum balance required to maintain it.

  • Free Interac e-Transfer service: You can easily transfer money to other Canadian bank accounts using the Interac e-Transfer service, at no cost.

  • Easy access to your money: You can access your money at any time via online banking or mobile banking.

  • Security: EQ bank’s website is secured with 256-bit SSL encryption, and all transactions are secure with multi-factor authentication.

EQ Bank’s Current GIC Rates

GIC stands for Guaranteed Investment Certificate, which is a type of investment that offers a guaranteed rate of return over a specific period of time. GIC rates are the interest rates that the financial institution pays on the GIC, the rates vary based on the duration of the GIC, the financial institution you purchase it from, and other factors. Typically, longer-term GICs offer higher interest rates than shorter-term GICs.

The GIC rates offered by EQ Bank may change from time to time depending on market conditions and other factors. In general, GIC rates tend to be lower than other types of investments such as stocks or mutual funds, but GICs are considered to be a low-risk investment option, as the principal amount invested is guaranteed.

Term GIC Rate Of Interest  
3 Month 2.65%  
6 Month 3.50%  
9 Month 3.75%  
1 Year 5.00%  
15 Month 5.00%  
2 Year 4.85%  
27 Month 4.75%  
3 Year 4.55%  
4 Year 4.40%  
5 Year 4.30%  
6 Year 4.10%  
7 Year 4.10%  
10 Year 4.10%

Is The Interest Earned From GIC Taxed?

In Canada, the taxes on GIC (guaranteed investment certificate) interest income depend on the type of GIC and the taxpayer’s personal income tax situation.

For non-registered GICs, the interest income is fully taxable as regular income in the year it is received. If the GIC is held in a registered account such as an RRSP (Registered Retirement Savings Plan), TFSA (Tax-Free Savings Account), or RRIF (Registered Retirement Income Fund), the interest is not taxed at the time it is received, but any withdrawals from the account will be taxed as income in the year they are taken out.

For cashable GICs, interest is taxed in the same way as non-registered GICs, while for redeemable GICs, interest is taxed annually, instead of when the GIC matures. It’s always best to check with a professional accountant or financial advisor to know the specifics and how it affects your tax situation.

What Is EQ Bank’s HELOC?

EQ Bank does not offer a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) as part of its product line. A HELOC is a type of loan that allows homeowners to borrow against the equity in their home. The loan provides a line of credit that the homeowner can use as needed, and they only pay interest on the amount they borrow.

EQ Bank is a division of Equitable Bank, which is a Schedule I Canadian bank, but the bank primarily focuses on the savings and investment products such as savings account, GICs, RRSP and TFSA. The bank is known for its high interest rates on savings accounts, which are often higher than those offered by traditional brick-and-mortar banks.

It’s important to note that EQ Bank does not have any physical branches, and all transactions are processed only through digital channels, so you would not be able to visit a branch for this type of loan. Also, it does not offer mortgages, credit cards, or loans, so it might not be the best option for getting a Home Equity Line of Credit.

If you are considering getting a HELOC, it is best to research other lending institutions that offer this product and compare the rates, terms and conditions before making a decision. It’s also a good idea to consult a financial advisor or mortgage professional to determine if a HELOC is right for you and to understand the risks and benefits of this type of loan.

Does EQ Bank Offer A Line Of Credit?

EQ Bank does not offer a Line of Credit (LOC) as part of their product line. A Line of Credit (LOC) is a type of loan that allows the borrower to have a flexible credit line, which can be drawn upon as needed. The borrower can access the funds when they need it and only pay interest on the amount they borrow. It’s similar to a credit card in terms of the usage, but usually the interest rate is lower and the terms are different.

EQ Bank is a division of Equitable Bank, which is a Schedule I Canadian bank, but the bank primarily focuses on the savings and investment products such as savings account, GICs, RRSP and TFSA. The bank is known for its high interest rates on savings accounts, which are often higher than those offered by traditional brick-and-mortar banks.

It’s important to note that EQ Bank does not have any physical branches, and all transactions are processed only through digital channels. As it does not offer mortgages, credit cards, or loans, it might not be the best option for getting a Line of Credit.

If you are considering getting a LOC, it is best to research other lending institutions that offer this product and compare the rates, terms and conditions before making a decision. It’s also a good idea to consult a financial advisor or mortgage professional to determine if a LOC is right for you and to understand the risks and benefits of this type of loan.

EQ Bank High-Interest Savings Account

EQ Bank’s High-Interest Savings Account is a popular product offered by the bank. This account allows customers to earn a high rate of interest on their savings, which can help them grow their savings faster.

One of the key features of EQ Bank’s High-Interest Savings Account is the high interest rate that it offers. The interest rate on the account is typically higher than the rates offered by traditional brick-and-mortar banks. The rate changes based on the market conditions, but in general it is higher than the industry standard rates.

Another feature of the High-Interest Savings Account is the flexibility to access the money. The account can be used like a traditional savings account, with easy and unlimited electronic access to funds. No penalty or fee is charged for withdrawing the money.

The account also offers easy management through its digital platform and mobile app. Customers can view account balances and transaction history, as well as make transfers and pay bills. Moreover, The account opening process is simple and can be done entirely online. The account also includes deposit insurance from the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario (DICO) up to $250,000 per depositor.

It’s worth noting that the High-Interest Savings Account doesn’t offer chequing or debit card facilities, so it’s not ideal for everyday transactions. But it can be a great option for people who want to earn a higher interest rate on their savings and have the flexibility to access their money when they need it.

It’s important to compare the rates and features of EQ Bank’s High-Interest Savings Account with other savings account options available in the market, before opening an account with them.

On a minimum purchase amount of $500, you can earn interest of 1.60% P.A. Interest is calculated daily and paid out monthly. You can invest up to a maximum of $500,000. There are no fees, and the High-Interest Savings Account is CDIC eligible. All products eligible for Equitable Bank’s Tax-Free Savings Account are eligible for coverage under CDIC’s deposit insurance program subject to CDIC’s limits and policies.

EQ Bank Offers TFSA and RRSP Accounts

If you are a Canadian resident 18 years of age or older with a valid Social Insurance Number (SIN), you are eligible to open a Tax-Free Savings Account.

All the interest earned on your eligible contributions is tax-free. The Annual TFSA eligible contribution limit is $6,000.

  • Short-Term Deposits – 30 through 364 days: Interest Paid at Maturity

  • Guaranteed Investment Certificates in terms from one to five years with interest payable :

  • Monthly (Direct Deposit Only)
  • Quarterly
  • Semi-annually
  • Annually
  • Compounded annually
  • If you would prefer to not withdraw, you may reinvest the interest earned in the GIC at the contract rate:

At maturity, the amounts can be automatically re-invested until a written request to withdraw the full or partial amount of the deposit is received.

EQ Bank offers Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSA) and Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSP) to its customers. These are special types of accounts that are designed to help Canadians save for their future goals while also providing tax benefits.

A TFSA is a type of savings account that allows Canadians to save money without paying taxes on the interest earned. TFSA contributions are not tax-deductible, but any interest, dividends, or capital gains earned within the account are tax-free. The TFSA contribution limit for the year 2021 is $6,000 and the unused contribution room is carried forward.

An RRSP is a type of savings account that is designed to help Canadians save for retirement. Contributions to an RRSP are tax-deductible, and the interest, dividends, or capital gains earned within the account are tax-deferred until the money is withdrawn. The RRSP contribution limit for the year 2021 is 18% of earned income of the previous year with a maximum of $27,830.

Both TFSA and RRSP accounts offered by EQ bank can be used to invest in GICs and other investment products as well. EQ bank allows customers to track their investments on the app or website.

Both accounts are eligible for deposit insurance up to $250,000 per depositor, provided by Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario (DICO).

It’s important to note that both TFSA and RRSP account contributions and withdrawals can only be done via electronic transfer, and the account must be linked to a EQ bank account, which can be a savings or chequing account.

It’s a good idea to consult a financial advisor or tax professional to determine if a TFSA or RRSP is right for you and to understand the contribution limits and tax implications of these accounts.

What Is The Minimum TFSA Deposit Amount At EQ Bank?

  • Short-Term Deposits $500.00

  • GICs $500.00

At maturity, the principal amounts can be automatically re-invested until a written request to withdraw the full or partial amount of the deposit is received.

Contribution and Withdrawal To Your TFSA

  • Cheque Payable to Equitable Bank

  • Partial withdrawals from an existing Equitable Bank investment for contribution to an Equitable Bank TFSA (continuing the same terms) will be available at any time

  • All withdrawals of the principal must be requested in writing to the EQ Bank.

How Safe Is EQ Bank? 

Yes, all eligible deposits with Equitable Bank/EQ Bank are insured up to $100,000, per insurance category, as outlined by the CDIC in “Protecting Your Deposits.”

For example, you’re covered for up to $100,000 combined across your EQ Bank Savings Plus Account and your EQ Bank GICs, and any deposits you have with Equitable Bank.

EQ Bank is a trademark of Equitable Bank. Equitable Bank is a member of the CDIC. Deposits held under Equitable Bank are eligible for deposit insurance from the CDIC, subject to the applicable limits and policies.

eq bank

How Does EQ Bank Make Money?

EQ Bank makes money by accepting deposits from customers, and then providing loans to other customers and earning interest from those loans. 

As a branchless bank, EQ Bank is able to reduce its operating costs, and pass on those savings to you in the form of a great everyday interest rate on the EQ Bank Savings Plus Account.

What Is EQ To EQ Transfer?

EQ to EQ Transfers lets you instantly send money to another EQ Bank customer for free.

You can send up to $30,000 per day (as opposed to a maximum of $3,000 per day for Interac e-Transfers). Funds sent through this method are not subject to holds, and funds are immediately available for use.

How To Send An EQ To EQ Transfer?

Using the EQ Bank’s mobile app, sign in to your account. Click on the “Transfer” option, which is at the bottom of the screen, and then “Transfer to EQ Connection.”

If you’re using a web browser, sign in to online banking. Under “Transfers,” click on “Transfer to EQ Connections.”

EQ Bank’s Location And Customer Care

EQ Bank is a Canadian digital bank and it does not have any physical branches. The bank’s operations are entirely online, and all transactions are processed through digital channels. Customers can access their accounts through the bank’s website or mobile app.

However, EQ Bank does offer customer support through email and phone. Customers can contact customer support to get help with account-related issues, such as account setup, online banking, and account security. The bank also has a comprehensive FAQ section on its website which can help customers with most of their queries.

The customer care service can be reached via email at [email protected] or phone at 1-877-273-3328, between 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m EST on Saturday and Sunday.

The bank’s head office is located in Toronto, Canada. It’s important to note that, as a digital bank, EQ Bank does not have any physical branches, so customers will not be able to visit a branch to conduct transactions or receive in-person assistance.

It’s worth noting that as a division of Equitable Bank, EQ Bank has the backing of a well-established Canadian bank and is a member of the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario (DICO), which means that deposits held in an EQ Bank account are insured up to $250,000 per depositor.

EQ Bank’s Mobile App

The EQ Bank mobile app is a convenient and easy-to-use tool that allows customers to access their EQ Bank accounts from their mobile devices. Some of the features of the app include:

  • Account management: Customers can view their account balances and transaction history, as well as manage their accounts, pay bills, and make transfers.

  • Deposit cheques: The app allows customers to deposit cheques using their mobile device’s camera, which is a quick and convenient way to add funds to their accounts.

  • Secure login: The app uses secure login methods, such as fingerprint recognition or a four-digit passcode, to protect customers’ financial information.

  • Easy navigation: The app has a simple and intuitive user interface that makes it easy for customers to find the features they need.

  • Push notifications: Customers can receive notifications for important account updates, such as low account balance or large transactions

  • Investment Management: The EQ bank app also has the option to invest in GICs and other investment products, also allow the customer to track their investments on the app

Overall, the EQ Bank mobile app is designed to provide customers with easy and secure access to their accounts, so they can manage their finances on the go. As with most financial apps, it requires a proper internet connection to access all its features. It is available for download on App Store and Google Play store. It’s worth checking user reviews and ratings before installing it and also ensuring that your mobile device meets the system requirements for the app.

Pros Of EQ Bank

  • Free Banking

  • EQ Bank has a transit number so you can get your salary direct deposited there and earn interest on it right away

  • Easy setup for pre-authorized debit for all my credit cards

  •  Unlimited and free e-Transfer

  • Free bill payment

  • Earn 2.3% interest every month 

  • CDIC insured up to $100,000

Cons Of EQ Bank 

  • Not easy to get cash out. You have to first transfer money to another account (Tangerine, Simplii) and then use a debit card at an ATM

  •  no cheque facility

  • There’s a transfer limit on EFTs

EQ Bank vs. Tangerine Bank 

EQ Bank is good because they’ve had a consistent interest rate throughout. I believe it’s always been greater than 2% since launch.

On the other side, Tangerine has a decent website and a good mobile app, but their savings account is more of a hassle than anything.

You get a promo interest rate which is more than 2% for signing up, but it only lasts for a period of 3-6 months.

What many people have done is taken all their money out after that, wait until they get another promo rate, and then put it back in. It’s kind of a pain in the butt to jump through hoops, but if you’re keen to maximize your interest you might want to have an account at both.

You can easily link the two online banks (EQ and Tangerine) and transfer back and forth to take advantage of whoever has the best rate at any point in time.

Tangerine Bank:

Pros: no fee, get ATM card, cheques, etc

Cons: promotional savings account rate is temporary

EQ bank:

Pros: no fee, free e-Transfers (to a certain limit), amazing savings account rate which is there all the time, easy to use the web app

Cons: Virtual banks don’t have an ATM card

Think long run. Go with EQ bank as it gives a good rate for your savings account compared to tangerine which is temporary.

FAQs

Who owns EQ Bank?

EQ Bank is owned by Equitable Bank which is a federally regulated Schedule I Bank that has over 650 employees and over $26 billion in total assets under management.

Equitable Bank is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Equitable Group and is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange as EQB.

Does EQ Bank offer a TFSA account? 

No, EQ Bank does not currently offer a TFSA account.

Does the Bank have an App? 

Yes, EQ Bank has an app that makes your online banking easy on the go.

They recently relaunched the app on App Store and Google Play with new and innovative features including fingerprint ID and facial recognition sign-in, as well as an overhauled user-friendly dashboard.

Does EQ Bank have a debit card?

No. However, their savings account works similar to a checking account in that you can deposit cheques, set up direct deposits, pre-authorized debits, bill payments, Electronic Funds Transfers, and more.

What Is The EQ Bank’s GIC rates? 

They offer some of the best GIC rates available in Canada today. You can check them out here.

Final Words 

As a digital bank, EQ Bank aims to provide customers with a convenient and efficient banking experience. They have a user-friendly website and mobile app that makes it easy for customers to manage their accounts, pay bills, make transfers, deposit cheques, and more.

One of the major draws of EQ Bank is the high-interest rates that they offer on their savings accounts. The bank currently offers some of the highest savings account interest rates in Canada, which can help customers grow their savings faster.

In addition to savings accounts, EQ Bank also offers GICs (Guaranteed Investment Certificates) which is a type of investment product with a fixed rate of return on the principal amount invested. GICs can be a great option for people who want to earn interest on their money while also protecting their principal investment.

EQ Bank also offers chequing accounts, which are similar to traditional chequing accounts offered by other banks. With an EQ Bank chequing account, customers can write cheques, make electronic bill payments, and set up direct deposit for their paychecks.

EQ Bank’s account opening process is simple and can be done entirely online. The bank also offers customer support through email and phone, and have a comprehensive FAQ page on their website which can help customers with most of their queries.

It’s worth noting that, as a digital bank, EQ Bank does not have any physical branches and all transactions are processed only through digital channels. This may not be suitable for some people who prefer face-to-face interaction or are not comfortable with digital channels for banking. Additionally, EQ Bank doesn’t offer mortgages, credit cards or loans, so it won’t be a one-stop-shop for all your banking needs. Please let me know your thoughts and comments below. 

EQ Bank

5

Value For Money

5.0/5

Benefits

5.0/5

Rewards

5.0/5

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