Hyperdrive, also known as warp speed or a number of other terms in science fiction, refers to traveling faster than light. While theoretically impossible for objects due to the special theory of relativity, moving at this incredible pace is possible for your money. While you have a savings account earning continuous interest, you are becoming slightly richer not every second, not every microsecond, but every infinitesimal portion of time. That’s fast.
If your money is earning 0.25% yearly interest in a standard brick-and-mortar savings account, you are not making the most of your money. For no more risk you can be earning up to 20 times as much. Savings, whether in a high-yield account or not, is among the safest of all investments. Here is the first tip for putting savings into hyperdrive. Keep in mind that the terms “savings account” and “money market account” (not “money market fund”) are interchangeable.
1. Open a high-yield savings account. Many banks are getting away with murder. They know that most customers are fine letting their money sit without looking for better alternatives. Comfortability plays a role.
If you’ve been with a bank for 15 years, you feel comfortable with them and are less inclined to feel the need to shop around. This is acceptable behavior as long as you understand that you could be missing out on significant interest income. Take a look at this list of high-yield savings accounts or look for the lists on BankRate.com.
Many of the banks that pay the highest interest do not have brick-and-mortar branches. These branches are expensive to run. Without having to manage branches, banks can theoretically save more income and pass that savings onto account holders in the form of interest.
There is no reason to feel nervous about opening an account with a bank that only exists online. As long as they are insured by the FDIC — and all the banks listed here are — you have the same protections you have with a traditional bank. Also, you’re safer sending your information over a secure, encrypted internet connection than you are traveling to a branch with your money.
Opening a high-yield savings account is a no-brainer. With a $10,000 balance at the beginning of the year and no further deposits, a savings account with an annual percentage yield (APY) of 4.5% earns $450 in interest, $425 more than the typical savings account offering 0.25% APY.
Published or updated January 14, 2008.