Are you familiar with 0% interest balance transfer cards? Many of the credit card providers are now offering these cards. The way they work is relatively simple. You just agree to transfer the balances on your other credit cards to the new card and then pay no interest for 6 to 18 months depending on which card you choose. This can be a very tempting offer, especially if you’re struggling with credit card debts and you have high interest credit cards – an APR of 20% or above.
There are several reasons why a 0% interest balance transfer card might make sense. It’s a way to get out from under high interest credit cards and to stop the harassing phone calls you’re receiving from the card providers or from collection agencies. Second, it provides a kind of recess from having to pay interest so that all of your payments go against your balance, which should help you get it either completely paid off or at least reduce it dramatically before your introductory period expires.
The biggest downside of the 0% interest balance transfer card is that you will likely have to pay a fee to make the transfer. This will probably be 3% to 4% of the amount you’re transferring. If you were to transfer, say, $15,000 to the new card, the fee would likely be around $450. Before you make the transfer, be sure to do the math so that you’ll actually save money on the deal.
Once your introductory period expires, you will have to start paying interest on the new card. Be sure that the new card has a better interest rate than your current cards. Some of them have interest rates of 18% or higher. You wouldn’t want to choose one of these cards as it would be no improvement over the credit cards you have now.
Why it won’t cure your credit card blues
The really big negative of these cards is that they do nothing to reduce your debts. They are just a way of transferring them from one set of lenders to another. If you owed $15,000 before the transfer, you will still owe $15,000 that you will need to pay back one way or another.
The best way to use a 0% interest balance transfer card
The best way to use one of these cards is to pay off the entire balance before your introductory period of 0% interest ends. This means paying more, maybe a lot more, then just the minimum monthly payments required. Here’s an example of what I mean. If you were to choose a card that gave you 12 months of no interest and you owed $15,000, the best thing you could do would be to pay $1250 a month so that at the end of those 12 months, you would owe nothing.
That way you will have paid no interest at all and you will be free of all credit card debts. Can’t you just imagine how good this would feel?
The one proven way to reduce credit card debt
There is really only one way to reduce credit card debt so that you can become debt free in 24 to 48 months. It’s called debt settlement or debt relief and it’s what we do. We can contact your credit card providers and negotiate settlements that will probably save you thousands of dollars as our debt counselors can get both your balances and interest rates reduced. Call our toll-free number today or fill out the form on this page, and let us explain debt settlement and how we could harness its power to help you.