Bankwest started more than 125 years ago after the Western Australian government decided to form a new agriculture bank lending specifically to the state’s farmers. It expanded its services into commercial and retail banking over the next 50 years and has since grown to become one of the state’s largest banks.
The Perth-based bank now has more than 1.1 million customers, 7,000 employees and about 80 branches in WA alone. It’s one of the country’s largest financial institutions which offers a range of personal banking services, including savings accounts.
By comparing with Savvy, you can consider interest rates, terms and conditions and special features to help make the decision of which account is right for you much simpler.
*Please note that Savvy does not represent Bankwest for their banking products.
More about BOQ savings accounts
What savings products does Bankwest offer?
Bankwest offers a few savings products tailored to people looking for somewhere to house their money. Interest rates, terms and conditions and accessibility levels vary depending on the account you want to open.
All of these accounts can be managed via its internet banking portal or mobile apps. This mobile app comes with a range of features, such as 24/7 live chat, two-factor authentication and the ability to track your savings and spending.
This account allows you to earn a bonus high interest rate of 0.70% p.a. for depositing at least $200 per month into your savings account and not making any withdrawals. If you don’t meet these conditions, you’ll earn a much lower interest rate of 0.01% p.a. This bonus rate applies to accounts with balances of up to $250,000.99.
A Hero Saver account comes with no monthly fees and easy access to your money through the mobile app. Bankwest caps you at one bonus saver account per person, but you can open one as a joint savings account with up to two signatories. You must be over 12 years old to open a bonus saver independently and aren’t required to open a linked transaction account.
These flexible savings accounts allow you to dip into your savings and still earn interest on your balance. Interest rates sit at 0.35% p.a. on this account, even if you make transactions. The account also lets you set up savings goals and targets to keep you motivated. The Easy Saver is fee-free and doesn’t come with minimum opening balance or deposit conditions. You’ll be able to open a linked everyday account to transfer money between accounts. However, these accounts cap their balance at $50,000.99. You can use Savvy’s easy-to-use savings calculator to estimate how much interest you could earn.
Bankwest Smart eSaver
An online saver with Bankwest operates very similarly to the Hero Saver with one catch – you don’t have to meet any required minimum monthly deposits to earn bonus interest. However, this flexible account only pays a maximum rate of 0.25% p.a. including bonus interest on balances under $500,000.99 if you don’t dip into your funds. You can earn up to 0.10% p.a. on balances between $500,001 and $5,000,000.99. However, if you don’t meet the monthly minimum deposit requirement, the Smart eSaver account comes with a low variable base rate of 0.01% p.a.
A long-term savings option for those who are happy to leave a lump sum to accrue interest at a fixed rate, Bankwest’s term deposit comes with two options. Both come with fixed rates between 0.15% p.a. for a one-month term and 2.15% p.a. for two to five-year terms (paid annually). They also both require at least 31 days’ notice if you need access to your funds before the date of maturity. The differences between these deposits are:
Online term deposit: This gives you the freedom to set up a term deposit online and attach a linked everyday account. This option comes with a minimum investment of just $1,000.
Gold term deposit: This account can only be set up at a branch or over the phone and lets you lock in a fixed period of up to five years. This option comes with a higher minimum balance of $5,000.
Business TeleNet Saver
A business savings account which lets you easily access your funds, the Business TeleNet Saver is tailored to sole traders, business owners and company directors. The account has no fees, no requirement for ongoing deposits and no daily transaction limit. These accounts earn a variable interest rate of 0.05% p.a. with interest calculated daily and paid monthly. You can link this account to a bank account to access your funds.
Retirement Advantage account
A hybrid savings and everyday account, this pensioner savings account gives seniors the flexibility to spend their money without forfeiting their interest. These fee-free accounts have no withdrawal charges and can be set up as a joint account.
Interest on this account is tiered. This means different rates apply to different portions of the same balance. The rates on this account include:
Balance between $0 and $1,999.99: 0.01% p.a.
Balance between $2,000 and $47,999.99: 0.05% p.a.
Balance of $48,000 or more: 0.25% p.a.
What are the eligibility criteria for opening a BOQ savings account?
Like the way most savings accounts work, you must be over the age of 12 years old to open an account with Bankwest. However, this can vary between products. For example, you must be over 16 years old to open an Easy Saver account or over 55 years old to open a Retirement Advantage account. You must also be an Australian resident with a local address for tax purposes.
You’ll be asked to submit at least two forms of photo identification to verify your identity. This would include:
Australian driver’s licence: Providing the state of issue, licence number and expiry date.
Medicare card: Providing your Medicare number, individual card reference number, name, card colour and valid date.
Australian or foreign-issued passport: Providing country of issue, passport number, expiry date, place of birth, country of birth and family name.
Top tips for comparing savings accounts
Choose an account that best fits your savings goals. If you need constant access to your savings, Bankwest may not be the right institution for you due to their no withdrawal requirement to earn bonus interest.
Finding a competitive interest rate is part and parcel of any savings account research, but it’s important to assess the base rates. If ever you can’t meet the bonus interest requirements, this is the percentage your interest will be calculated on.
Over the counter charges and hidden fees may seem insignificant, but they can add up over the space of a year. Make sure you pick a low-fee, high interest account so what you earn isn’t eaten up by fees.
Some accounts only offer bonus interest up to certain balance limits, such as the Easy Saver. Make sure these criteria work for you and that you can earn a higher rate without having to worry about your balance.
Pros and cons of Bankwest savings account
Save on fees
Bankwest’s savings accounts come fee-free, alleviating the risk of your interest being eaten up in monthly account keeping costs.
No minimum deposits
Some accounts can reap a bonus high interest rate without having to meet a deposit benchmark.
Inability to withdraw
If you want to earn bonus interest, you won’t be able to withdraw your account which can be highly restrictive.
Most of Bankwest’s branches are situated in Western Australia, meaning it could be tough to find a local outlet if you live in another state.