The interest rate on savings accounts is at an all-time low. The majority of banks only pay the legally required minimum interest rate of a 0.01% base rate and a 0.10% fidelity bonus over savings accounts. How can you gain higher returns on your savings? We list three alternatives, together with the advantages and disadvantage.
1. Tax-advantaged saving
What is tax-advantaged saving?
Tax-advantaged saving means that you keep your savings in a product that provides you with tax advantages. The tax authorities allow you to benefit from a tax reduction. Of course, tax reductions are only appealing if you have to pay personal income tax.
There are two types of tax-advantaged saving
Advantages of tax-advantaged saving
- You get an annual tax reduction
- Both pension saving and long-term saving can be done on tax-advantaged savings accounts
Disadvantages of tax-advantaged saving
You save in the long term so you will not have access to your money for a longer period of time.
2. Investment plan
What is an investment plan?
Advantages of an investment plan
- Investment plans are a suitable alternative to monthly saving and you can invest both smaller and larger amounts
- The investment plan is ideal if you want to start investing: you don't need to have any previous investment experience
- You invest over time, which reduces the risk of investing
- You can modify or cancel your investment plan whenever you want
Disadvantages of an investment plan
Although you can request the funds in an investment plan on a daily basis, remember that it's best leave your money where it is for a longer period of time. Investment happens over a longer period of time.
3. Time deposit account
What is a time deposit account?
Advantages of a time deposit account
- You receive a higher rate of interest than on an ordinary savings account
- For a number of term investments, capital of up to 100,000 euros (per person and per bank) that you have invested is also protected by the deposit guarantee scheme, subject to certain conditions
- A time deposit account is free of charge
Disadvantages of a time deposit account
- Your money is not immediately accessible: you can only access your money on the final due date of your time deposit account
- You need to invest a specific minimum amount, varying from a few hundred euros to 10,000 euros
1 Future tax treatment can change and depends on your individual circumstances. Your intermediary will be glad to give you personalised advice in this respect.
2 The term investment fund refers to a sub-fund of a sicav or an open-ended investment company under Belgian or Luxembourg law, or a mutual fund.
3 You can choose from more than 100 investment funds. Only open-ended capitalisation funds may be used in an investment plan.
Saving or investing for a child, grandchild or godchild
You want to put some money aside for a a child, grandchild or godchild, but is it better to save or invest?