savings

Money market account vs. checking account

If you have your savings stashed in a money market account, chances are you're stuck with low interest rates. The good news: Bankrate's 2010 High-Yield Checking Study shows that there are higher interest rates waiting at banks that offer high-yield checking accounts. If you combine the same savings lessons you've learned with your money market account with high-yield earning power, you can reap a return worth talking about.

Abide by the same withdrawal guidelines

Federal regulations restrict withdrawals and check-writing capabilities from a money market account. While there are typically no limits to the number of transactions you can make from a high-yield checking account, limiting your withdrawals is obviously a good choice. The less money you take out, the more money you earn.

Maintain those balance minimums

If your money market account includes a monthly balance minimum, manage your high-yield checking account with that same magic number. While some high-yield checking helps you earn at a higher interest rate with as little as $1 in the account, keeping a bigger balance will help you bring home a bigger return.

Keep the deposits coming

Just as you try to make regular deposits into a money market account, frequent deposits into a high-yield checking account are essential to making higher interest rates pay off. Set up a schedule of automatic transfers into your new account to ensure you keep your balance growing.

While the rates of your money market account may feel forgettable, the savings habit you've learned is worth remembering.

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Dear Dr. Don, Where can I get the best and safest savings rates? I feel like I need to do a better job of saving and want to get a good return on my money. -- Walter Wonders Dear Walter, That's the kind of question... Read more

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