High Yield Reward Checking Account Rates for 2024

Find high-yield, interest-bearing checking accounts that offer rewards and perks for signing up and using the account. Compare banks and rates.

Looking for the best rewards checking or interest checking account? Rewards and interest checking accounts aren’t as common as they were a few years ago, but there are still several checking products today that offer competitive interest rates — and possibly some other perks, too.

An interest-bearing, high-yield checking account is offered by banks or credit unions that allows customers to earn interest on the balance maintained in the account. These accounts typically offer higher interest rates compared to traditional checking accounts, hence the term “high-yield.”

What Is a High-Yield, Interest-Bearing Checking Account?

Here are some key features of interest-bearing, high-yield checking accounts:

Interest-bearing, high-yield checking accounts can be a good option for customers who want the liquidity and convenience of a checking account while earning some interest on their funds. However, customers should carefully review the terms and conditions, including minimum balance requirements, fees, and interest rates, to determine if the account aligns with their financial goals and needs.

Compare Checking Accounts & Find the Best Offers

Find a variety of checking account promotions in the table below and get the best bank deals.

Checking Account Bonus Offers

Checking account bonus offers are incentives banks provide to encourage individuals to open a new checking account with them. These bonuses can come in various forms and typically require customers to fulfill specific requirements to qualify. Here are some common types of bonuses offered for signing up for a checking account:

It’s important to carefully review the terms and conditions of any checking account bonus offer to understand the requirements for qualifying, any associated fees, and how long the bonus offer is valid. Additionally, consider factors such as account features, interest rates, and overall banking services when choosing a checking account rather than solely focusing on the bonus offer.

What Is a High-Yield Rewards Checking Account?

A rewards checking account is a type of checking account offered by some banks or credit unions that pays interest and provides customers with various rewards or incentives for using the account. These rewards often come in the form of cash back, high-interest rates, or other perks. Here’s how a rewards checking account typically works:

Qualification Requirements

To be eligible for rewards, customers usually need to meet specific qualification criteria the bank sets. Typical requirements may include:

  • Making a minimum number of debit card transactions per month.
  • Enrolling in electronic statements or online banking.
  • Setting up direct deposits into the account.
  • Maintaining a minimum balance in the account.

Earn Rewards

Once the customer meets the qualification requirements, they can earn rewards. Rewards can vary depending on the financial institution but may include:

  • Cash back on debit card purchases.
  • High interest rates on the account balance.
  • ATM fee reimbursements for using ATMs outside of the bank’s network.
  • Discounts on loan rates or other banking products.

Monthly Review

At the end of each monthly statement cycle, the bank will review the account to determine if the customer has met the qualification requirements. The rewards will be credited to the account if the requirements are met. If not, the account may still function as a regular checking account without the rewards for that period.

No or Low Fees

Many rewards checking accounts also come with no monthly maintenance fees or low fees compared to traditional checking accounts. However, customers should still be aware of any other fees associated with the account, such as overdraft or out-of-network ATM fees.

Benefits and Features

In addition to rewards, rewards checking accounts may offer other features such as online banking, mobile banking, bill pay services, and access to a network of ATMs.

Customers need to understand the specific terms and conditions of the rewards checking account, including the qualification requirements, rewards structure, and any associated fees, to determine if it aligns with their banking needs and spending habits.

Requirements and Limitations

Interest-bearing and rewards checking accounts often come with specific requirements and limitations that customers must fulfill to qualify for the benefits. Here are some standard requirements and limitations associated with these types of accounts:

Minimum Balance Requirement 

The account may require customers to maintain a minimum balance to earn interest or receive rewards. If the balance falls below the specified amount, the account may not earn interest or qualify for rewards, and the customer may incur fees.

Debit Card Usage

Many rewards checking accounts require customers to make several monthly debit card transactions to qualify for rewards. These transactions typically need to be signature-based rather than PIN-based.

Direct Deposit

Some accounts may require customers to set up direct deposit of a paycheck or other regular income into the account to qualify for rewards or avoid monthly maintenance fees.

Electronic Statements

Customers may be required to enroll in electronic statements rather than receiving paper statements through the mail.

Online Banking Activity

Certain accounts may require customers to log in to online banking or mobile banking platforms regularly or perform specific actions online to qualify for rewards.

Limited Number of Accounts 

Some financial institutions limit the number of interest-bearing or rewards checking accounts a customer can open to one account per individual or household.

Transaction Limits

There may be limits on the number of transactions, such as debit card purchases or withdrawals, allowed per statement cycle to qualify for rewards or avoid fees.

Geographic Restrictions

Some banks or credit unions offering interest-bearing or rewards checking accounts may only be available to customers in specific geographic regions.

Promotional Periods

Certain rewards or interest rates the account offers may be promotional and subject to change after a certain period.

Fee Structure

Customers should be aware of any fees associated with the account, such as monthly maintenance fees, overdraft fees, or out-of-network ATM fees.

It’s crucial for customers to carefully review the terms and conditions of interest-bearing and rewards checking accounts to understand the requirements, limitations, and potential fees associated with the account before opening it. Meeting these requirements can help customers maximize the benefits of these accounts and avoid unnecessary fees.

Bottom Line

Before opening a high-yield rewards checking account, it’s advisable to carefully review the terms and conditions, including any qualifying criteria, fees, and limitations, to ensure they align with your financial needs and habits.

About Author
Gina Freeman writes about personal finance and has been featured on MoneyRates, The Mortgage Reports, MSNMoney, Fox Business, Forbes, The Motley Fool, and other fine websites. Her background includes tax accounting with Deloitte, over 20 years in mortgage sales and underwriting, systems consulting for Experian, and several years in bankruptcy law. Gina enjoys helping consumers make confident and intelligent financial decisions.