Deciding where to stick your savings is tricky.

Savings and money market accounts are highly liquid but usually offer a low rate of return.

Long-term CDs offer better rates. But unless you’re willing to pay a premium for withdrawing your funds early, they’ll be locked in for years. During a period when rates are rising, that could put you at a disadvantage.

An 18-month CD offers the best of both worlds: a higher yield than a standard savings account and a low level of commitment. Here are Bankrate’s picks for the top nationally available 18-month CD rates:

Top nationally available 18-month CD rates
Institution APY Minimum deposit
Live Oak Bank 2.85% $2,500
Popular Direct 2.85% $10,000
First Internet Bank of Indiana 2.84% $1,000
Vio Bank 2.80% $500
M.Y. Safra Bank 2.80% $750

Today’s top nationally available 18-month CDs pay 2.85 percent APY. This may be a good place to invest money for short-term financial obligations, like saving up for a down payment on a house.

Finding the best 18-month CD rates

Finding the best 18-month CD may take some time. Besides the interest rate, you’ll need to compare early withdrawal penalties and minimum deposit requirements. Find out whether you’ll be responsible for any fees.

Here are the top nationally available 18-month CD rates. Compare these offers, then calculate how much interest you would earn when your CD matures.

Top account details

  • Established in 2008, Live Oak Bank is a federally-insured financial institution. Supporting small business owners is part of its mission statement. It earned five out of five stars in the latest review of its financial health.
  • Popular Direct is a subsidiary of Popular Inc., a financial services firm serving the United States, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. Popular Direct accounts are opened through Popular Bank, a federally insured institution that earned three out of five stars in Bankrate’s latest review of its financial health.
  • First Internet Bank of Indiana, based in Fishers, Indiana, was founded in 1999 and serves customers across the country. It earned four out of five stars in the latest review of its financial health.
  • Vio Bank is a new online division of MidFirst Bank, a financial institution based in Oklahoma City. MidFirst Bank earned four out of five stars in the latest review of its financial health.
  • M.Y. Safra Bank is based in New York City. Initially established as T. Rowe Price Savings Bank, it changed its name and moved from Baltimore, Maryland in 2013.

An 18-month CD is a low-risk investment. But before you purchase one, it’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into.

Ask if you’ll have to maintain a certain balance to earn the annual percentage yield. While you’re at it, find out how often you’ll receive the interest you’re earning from your bank or credit union. That way, it’ll be easier to hit your savings target or another financial goal.