A balance transfer credit card is not for everyone. In the right hands, a balance transfer credit card can be a powerful financial tool used to pay off debt. Used incorrectly, however, a balance transfer credit card can be used to get even deeper into debt. If these three statements apply to you, then you are likely a good candidate for a balance transfer credit card:. Many people get into trouble by opening a balance transfer credit card account, moving a balance, then racking up another large balance on their old credit card at double-digit interest rates while making little to no progress paying down the balance they moved in the first place.
Savvy people use low interest balance transfer credit cards for the specific purpose of refinancing high interest credit card debt. Balance transfer fees are added to your balance -- Keep in mind that balance transfer fees are rolled into your balance. But in this example, the shorter promo period is actually better. By the time the interest kicks in on either offer, much of the debt has already been repaid!
By law, credit card companies only have to apply amounts in excess of the minimum monthly payment to your highest APR balance. This can be a costly mistake. You do not need perfect credit to qualify for a balance transfer credit card. Card issuers know that people who apply for balance transfer cards are likely to carry an existing balance with another issuer, which could have already marred your credit score.
What are balance transfers good for if not for transferring existing credit card debt? People who have fair credit scores generally above can be approved for most offers as well. Importantly, credit scores are not the only factor issuers use to decide whether or not to approve you for a card.
Your income, mortgage or rent payments, and payments due on other debts also play a role in deciding whether or not you get approved for a new balance transfer card. When used correctly, a balance transfer can help you pay down debt faster, avoid interest on your balances, and get you back on track toward a life free of credit card debt. Avoid the temptation to rack up new balances.
Transferring a balance to a credit card frees up capacity on another credit card. If you have a tendency to overspend, it may be smart to avoid credit cards altogether while you pay down that existing credit card debt. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Mastercard and Visa.
The Motley Fool recommends Amex. Our number one goal is helping people find the best offers to improve their finances. That is why editorial opinions are ours alone and have not been previously reviewed, approved, or endorsed by included advertisers. Editorial content from The Ascent is separate from The Motley Fool editorial content and is created by a different analyst team.
No fee balance transfer credit cards
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Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards.
Transferring high-cost credit card debt to one of our picks for best balance transfer credit cards can help you chip away at debt with the power of a jackhammer. We've compiled this in-depth guide to help you get rid of debt by guiding you to our favorite offers, some of which are from our partners, and outlining some balance transfer credit card essentials. Let's get started! Apply Now. Our Bottom Line Simply put, this card includes one of the longest balance transfer promos for qualifying transfers we've come across, making it a solid contender for cardholders wanting to avoid paying interest over an extended period.
Read Full Review. Debt consolidation loans are one way of dealing with overwhelming debts — read our guide to learn more What is loan consolidation? With one of these credit cards you could enjoy: Cashback — Get back […]. Brits are set to be haunted long into the winter months by their summer credit card debt, according to new uSwitch research. Check your eligibility for credit cards 1 Improve your chances of being accepted 2 It won't affect your credit score 3 It's quick, free and easy Check your eligibility.
How much would you like to transfer?
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What will I pay? View key details Card details Up to 7, bonus Nectar points.
To get this card you must at least: be a UK resident be 18 or older have a good credit rating not have been declined for credit in the last month not be an existing Sainsbury's Bank Credit Card holder Additional criteria for acceptance from the lender may apply. Terms and conditions apply.
To get this card you must at least: be a UK resident for at least 3 years be 18 or older hold a UK bank or building society account have a good credit history eligibility check - see if you qualify without affecting your credit rating.
The 6 Best No Balance Transfer Fee Credit Cards of - NerdWallet
Depending on the results, product details may vary cannot transfer from MBNA accounts Additional criteria for acceptance from the lender may apply. To get this card you must at least: be a permanent UK resident be 18 or older have a good credit rating no balance transfers from Halifax Bank Additional criteria for acceptance from the lender may apply. To get this card you must at least: be 18 or older be a UK resident have good credit history no balance transfers from Virgin Money plc Additional criteria for acceptance from the lender may apply.
Fluid 9 month Balance Transfer Credit Card. Free text alerts Flexible payment dates. To get this card you must at least: be 18 or older have a permanent UK address have a current UK bank or building society account not be registered bankrupt in the last 18 months or have proceedings have no CCJs past 12 months not have taken out a marbles, opus or aqua card in the past 12 months Additional criteria for acceptance from the lender may apply. Virgin Money Travel Credit Card.
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- 9 Best No Balance Transfer Fee Credit Cards (12222).
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Got a balance transfer card? Load more deals. Frequently asked questions Credit card guides Debt help News Related pages. Frequently asked questions What to look for in a balance transfer deal Balance transfer credit cards allow you to transfer their credit to pay off your balance on other cards. What are top deals?
What does 'popularity' mean? Cards are ranked by the number of clicks they get on the site in the past 48 hours. Source: CreditCards. As CreditCards.
Comparing Balance Transfer Credit Card Offers
Take advantage of these promotions and be careful to avoid running up more debt once you've worked so hard to get out of it. There are some cards that offer no fee, however. We found in our January balance transfer survey that there was actually an increase in no-fee balance transfer cards — of cards, 15 balance transfer cards offer no-fee transfers , up from 9 in our December survey. In the survey, 8 others offer either an introductory lower fee or waive the fee entirely if you make the transfer in a set amount of time. Sometimes the waived fee comes after the introductory offer ends.
If you're considering a balance transfer card, you may be wondering how much work goes into moving the balance from one card to another. Overall, the process is relatively simple on the end of the cardholder. Here are the steps you should follow:. Balances can take up to 6 weeks to transfer, so we recommend that you pay the minimum amount on your old card until the transfer closes to avoid late fees and other penalties.
Also, be sure to transfer your balance before the card's introductory offer ends. As you might expect, your process doesn't end with getting your new balance transfer card. Now, you'll need to transfer the balance from the old card, and the amount of time it takes can vary widely, depending on the card issuer and whether your balance transfer card is a new or old account. American Express has one of the longest transfer periods — 6 weeks — while it can take as little as 3 days with a Capital One card.
Here is the expected wait time for 5 major card issuers. For those struggling under the weight of heavy credit card debt, a balance transfer card can offer a great opportunity to lower your interest payments and pay off your debt more quickly. If you have debt, perhaps from going overboard with gifts for the kids, you may have thought about getting a balance transfer card. However, a balance transfer isn't always the best way to address your old balance. There are a few important things to consider before making your decision.
First, determine if you can pay off your current balance quickly. If you can pay your current balance off in six months or less, transferring your debt may not be worth it. Second, consider your credit score. Remember: The main reason to transfer your balance to a different card is to get a lower interest rate.
Finally, it is important to be a responsible cardholder. If you have a difficult time making credit card payments on time, you should think twice about getting a balance transfer card. In addition to racking up expensive late fees, issuers will typically cancel any promotional interest rate offers if you pay your bill late — meaning, you could be responsible for high interest payments right away. If you can pay off your balance within the promotional period of your new card before interest rates rise, then balance transfers are a helpful tool.
But if you don't think you'll be able to pay off your debt soon after transferring your balance, you should consider alternative options, such as:. When comparing balance transfer cards, your gut may tell you to choose the card with the longest introductory period. You're not entirely wrong, but there's another very important consideration: The balance transfer fee. So, which is a better way to go? A no-fee balance transfer offer, or a card with an especially long introductory period? Most of the time, the no-fee card wins out. Here's the math to help you decide:.
Once you know the size of the balance transfer and the installment amount, you need to calculate the fees and interest for each card. Basically, you need to calculate how much of a balance remains for each card once the introductory period expires don't forget to add the card's balance transfer fee to the initial balance , and then calculate the interest that you will owe each month until the balance is paid off.
Using the same balance transfer amount and installment payment, calculate the fees and interest for both cards, then compare the amounts side by side. Finding the card that will cost you the least to pay down your balance should be your first priority. However, if all else is equal between the cards, you should look at remaining features on the cards to see if either is worth holding onto in the long run. For instance, the Discover it Balance Transfer card from our example has a very valuable cash back program.
Balance transfer cards can be an excellent savings tool, but they also tend to carry high APRs, which can be a pitfall if you aren't diligent in paying down your balance. Here are a few tips to keep you from digging yourself into more debt:. Balance transfer cards usually carry higher-than-average APRs, and if you can't repay the balance before the introductory period, it could potentially cost you more in interest rates and fees than if you leave the balance where it is. If your current account has a lower interest rate, you should do some math to figure out whether transferring all of your balance or just a portion of it will cost less.
Be sure to send your payment by the due date to avoid penalty fees. Set up an automatic payment through your bank and schedule it a few days before your due date to be on the safe side. You should try to pay off your balance before the regular APR kicks in. However, you should also take into account balances on other cards. You may want to focus on paying down accounts with higher interest rates first, and then make larger payments toward your 0-percent card once you've paid off your other accounts.
Don't close down your old account once you've transferred your balance from it, especially if you've had it for a long time. Doing so could significantly lower your credit score, by lowering the average age of your accounts and raising your credit utilization ratio. However, you don't want to incur new debt either.