Best CD Rates in North Carolina for February 2024

Finding the best CD rates in North Carolina can help you reach your financial goals faster.

CDs are a great way to invest your money without risk. Choosing an FDIC-insured bank and a CD term that allows access to your funds when needed can help you grow your funds without too much stress.

Best CD Rates in North Carolina

Finding the best CD rates in NC is easy with our go-to list of the highest rates and best CD terms. We’ve compiled an extensive list of CD requirements to help you maximize your investments.

  1. Valley Direct: 5.60% APY
  2. Ponce Bank: 5.40% APY
  3. Sallie Mae: 5.40% APY
  4. Blue Federal Credit Union: 5.25% APY
  5. Quontic Bank: 5.30% APY
  6. Discover® Bank: 4.90% APY
  7. CIT Bank: 5.00% APY
  8. First Tech: 5.35% APY

1. Valley Direct valley national bank Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $500
  • APY: 4.60% – 5.60%
  • Terms: 12 to 36 months

When looking for the best CD rates in North Carolina, consider Valley Direct. They offer some of the highest APYs and have fixed and variable-rate CD options.

While the terms are limited to only three choices, the variable rate CD has a rate that remains 0.1% higher than the Federal Funds Target Rate Upper Limit. If you worry about inflation, this CD can help you rest easier.

If you don’t worry about rates changing, they offer a 12 and 24-month fixed-rate CD. You need only $500 to open an account, and interest compounds daily, allowing your money to grow the fastest.

Pros:

  • Variable CD option to work with inflation
  • Daily compounding interest
  • High rates on all terms

Cons:

  • There are only three terms to choose from
  • Early withdrawal penalties

 


2. Ponce Bank ponce Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $1
  • APY: 5.40%
  • Terms: 1 month

When looking for the best CD rates in North Carolina, it’s important to consider what the bank stands for. Ponce Bank is minority-owned and focuses on underbanked communities, which most banks don’t consider. If this is important to you, consider supporting this bank with your CD deposits.

Ponce Bank offers a no-penalty CD option with a 1-month term. This is unusual since most people can tie up funds for at least a month, but it pays an exceptionally high APY at 5.40%, so it’s worth considering.

Ponce Bank, through Raisin, offers top-notch security, and your funds are FDIC-insured to protect your investment.

Pros:

  • Great mission
  • Many CD terms
  • High APY no-penalty option

Cons:

  • Penalty for early withdrawals
  • Low APY on 48-month terms

 


3. Sallie Mae sallie mae Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $1
  • APY: 5.40% APY
  • Terms: 10 to 14 months

Sallie Mae helps people improve their lives through student loans and now high-interest CDs. North Carolina residents can access the high APYs and have FDIC protection through a partnership with Raisin.

Sallie Mae offers high yields on all of its CD terms and offers a no-penalty CD that provides peace of mind should you need your funds early.

The tradeoff is a lower APY, but their interest rates are higher than many other banks, and they only offer terms between 10 and 14 months.

Pros:

  • High APYs on all terms
  • Interest compounds daily
  • Low minimum investment requirement

Cons:

  • Only short-term options
  • APY drops if you want a no-penalty CD

 


4. Blue Federal Credit Union blue federal credit union Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $1
  • APY: 5.00% – 5.25%
  • Terms: 9 to 15 months

Even though it’s a credit union, Blue Federal Credit Union offers some of the best CD rates in North Carolina, and anyone can be a member. All you have to do to join is donate to the Blue Foundation.

As a member, you can access high-yield CDs, no matter the term you choose. While all terms are short-term at 9 to 15 months, the APYs are incredible.

You also have the option to open a 9-month no-penalty CD, which allows access to your funds after 30 days. Of course, the longer you keep the funds invested, the more interest you’ll earn, but it’s good to know you can access the funds if needed.

Pros:

  • Great APYs on all terms
  • Low opening balance requirement
  • No-penalty CD option

Cons:

  • A small selection of terms
  • You must join the credit union

 


5. Quontic quontic Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $500
  • APY: 4.30% – 5.30%
  • Terms: 6 months to 5 years

If you love digital banks, you’ll love the best CD rates in North Carolina that you’ll find at Quontic. This online bank offers great customer support, high APYs on all terms, and a large selection of terms.

The only downside to the CDs at Quontic is they automatically renew. However, if you change your mind, they offer a 10-day grace period after the CD renews.

So pay attention to the term and determine before or right after renewal if you want to keep the CD or cash it out. If you cash out any other time, you’ll pay a penalty.

Pros:

  • Interest compounds daily
  • Has FDIC insurance
  • High APYs on all terms

Cons:

  • No in-person option
  • Penalty for early withdrawals

 


6. Discover® Bank discover Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $2,500
  • APY: 2.00% – 4.90% APY
  • Terms: 3 months to 10 years

If you’re looking for the best CD rates in North Carolina, you can access them at a bank that’s a household name — Discover® Bank. Be careful, though. Only choose the term you can leave the funds untouched for, as they have high early withdrawal penalties.

On the upside, Discover offers various terms, some with higher rates than others. Choose the term with the highest rate that you know you can leave the funds untouched, and you’ll increase your chances of reaching your financial goals.

Discover® Bank is FDIC-insured, and interest compounds daily.

Pros:

  • Many term options
  • FDIC-insured
  • Upfront about penalties

Cons:

  • High opening balance requirement
  • Not all terms have high APYs

 


7. CIT Bank cit bank Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $1,000 unless you want a jumbo CD, then $100,000
  • APY: 0.30% – 5.00%
  • Terms: 6 months to 5 years

CIT Bank offers many CD options for investors looking for no-penalty or RampUp CDs. They also offer term CDs for those looking for traditional terms.

CIT Bank is one that you must watch the rates, as they can be low on some terms. You’re likely better off choosing shorter terms and renewing the CD when it matures to keep earning higher rates.

CIT Bank makes opening and managing your account online easy, and interest computes daily. They are also FDIC-insured, so you don’t have to worry about risking your funds.

Pros:

  • Option for a no-penalty CD
  • FDIC-insured
  • RampUp CD options to keep up with inflation

Cons:

  • Some terms have low APYs
  • High early withdrawal penalties

 


8. First Tech first tech federal credit union Logo

  • Minimum Deposit: $500
  • APY: 2.25% – 5.35%
  • Terms: 6 to 60 months

If you’re looking for the best CD rates in North Carolina and don’t mind belonging to a credit union, check out First Tech.

They offer traditional CDs and Bump Up CDs that allow you to bump up your rate if market rates increase. This is a great way to tie up your funds but not be affected by inflation.

You need only $500 to open an account, and they offer terms as long as five years with an APY higher than many banks offer on a longer term.

If you have 13 months to tie up funds, they offer a great promotional rate on their 13-month Bump Up CD, which means if rates increase, you can bump up the rate even higher.

Pros:

  • Many non-traditional options
  • FDIC insured
  • Low minimum deposit requirement

Cons:

  • Some rates are on the lower end
  • You must join the credit union

 


Summary of the Best CD Rates in North Carolina

Company APY Minimum Deposit Requirement Compounding Frequency
Valley Direct 4.6% to 5.6% $500 Daily
Ponce Bank 1.21% to 5.5% $1 Daily
Sallie Mae 5.40% APY $1 Daily
Blue Federal Credit Union 5% to 5.25% $1 Daily
Quontic 4.3% to 5.05% $500 Daily
Discover® Bank 4.90% APY $2,500 Daily
CIT Bank 0.3% to 5% $1,000 Daily
First Tech 2.25% to 4.91% $500 Daily

Types of CDs Available in NC

Understanding your options is important before looking for the best CD rates in North Carolina. Short-term, long-term, and no-penalty CDs are just a few options you must understand before opening a CD.

Short-Term CDs in North Carolina

If you have short-term goals, short-term CDs can help you reach them. These CDs often have the highest APYs, allowing your funds to grow the fastest while providing access to them in a short period.

Some investors purposely choose short-term CDs to take advantage of higher rates and then compare their options again upon maturity. If they don’t need the funds and don’t have better options to grow their funds, they can renew the CD and earn interest again.

Long-Term CDs in North Carolina

Long-term CDs in North Carolina are for longer-term goals, usually within 24 months to five years. Be careful when choosing this option because you tie up the funds for the term. If you withdraw funds early, you’ll pay a penalty, usually equal to three or more months of interest.

Some banks offer promotions on long-term CDs, so look for the term in which you can earn the best rate. However, pay close attention to withdrawal options and what it will cost if you access the funds early.

Liquid CDs in North Carolina

If you worry about tying up your funds, consider liquid CDs in North Carolina. These CDs, also called no-penalty CDs, allow early access to the funds before maturity. Of course, your best bet is to leave the funds untouched until maturity, but if you need them, they are accessible.

Each bank has different rules regarding how liquid CDs work. At a minimum, most require you to keep the funds deposited for seven days, but some have longer requirements, such as 30 days, so be sure to read the fine print.

Step Up/Bump Up CDs in North Carolina

If you worry about inflation and rates increasing while your funds are tied up in a CD, you can choose a step-up or bump-up CD. This option allows you to increase your rate according to the latest market rates.

Each bank has different rules regarding how this works. Some only allow you to bump up the rate once, so choose your term accordingly. Your initial rate might also be lower than other terms, so look at the big picture when deciding.

Add-on CDs in North Carolina

If you think you’ll have more funds to deposit into a CD, consider an add-on CD. Traditional CDs allow a deposit once. If you have more money to deposit, you must open another CD.

However, add-on CDs allow you to add recurring deposits, which can be a good way to make your money grow faster and force you to save.

Our Methodology

The BankBonus team has reviewed dozens of brick-and-mortar banks, online banks, credit unions, and fintech companies offering CD accounts in North Carolina.

To provide you with accurate recommendations for the best CD rates in North Carolina, we used the metrics below to assess each account:

  • APY: First and foremost, we evaluate CD offers based on how competitive their APY is
  • Compounding schedule: Another major factor we consider is the account’s compounding schedule, prioritizing banks that compound interest daily rather than monthly or quarterly
  • CD terms: We also consider the variety of CD term lengths each financial institution offers
  • Account minimum: Additionally, we look at each CD’s minimum opening deposit requirements and any ongoing account minimums
  • User experience: We carefully consider the ease of applying and managing CD accounts on each bank’s website and factor in reviews of the mobile app from the App Store and Google Play Store
  • Customer service: In our review process, we also explore each institution’s customer service channels, hours of availability, and third-party reviews

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