If you have credit card debt then you know that over time it just seems to get more expensive.
Plus you could be paying a ton of extra interest if you have your credit card debt spread across multiple cards.
Whether you’re looking to put all of your debt in one place, or just looking to soften the blow of your interest payments, then a balance transfer might be the secret sauce you need to pay off your debt quicker.
Now I’m not talking about the sauce that comes out of the bottle so easily that it drowns your food…nope, this one you are still going to have to work for. You’re going to have to hit the bottle in the right spot just to get it out just like you are still going to have to put the work into paying off your debt.
Balance transfers are just one way to get the sauce flowing so you can get out of debt quicker.
If you’ve ever wanted to know more about balance transfers, or if they could be an excellent way to pay off your debt, then read on!
Should You Consider A Balance Transfer?
The real answer to this question lies in your credit card choice. Think back to the day you opened that credit card account. Was it a 0% APR offer that sucked you in? Was it the interest rate? The decision you made that day can either be a blessing or a curse for you now.
If you have accrued a large balance on a high-interest credit card, then you may want to consider doing a balance transfer to help pay off your debt at a lower interest rate.
If you have a high-interest credit card, your payments may only be chipping away at your interest owed!
Depending on your credit score, you may be able to transfer your balance through another (or your current) credit card company.
If you have a good credit score, you may have a low introductory rate which can help you make some serious headway in paying off your balance.
Most balance transfers will come with a fee. The fee is typically somewhere around 3% of the balance on your credit card, and most cards will also have a limit on the balance you can transfer.
When Are Balance Transfers A Good Idea?
If your debt currently resides on a high-interest credit card, and you can find a new card with a low or nonexistent credit rate, a small transfer fee, and a limit high enough to cover your balance, then a balance transfer can be an effective way to pay off your debt sooner.
If you can find a card with an extended introductory period, you could even pay off your balance before you start accruing more interest!
Remember that the goal of a balance transfer credit card is to reduce your overall interest and to help you lower those monthly payments. Having your credit card debt on one low-interest rate card can significantly reduce the amount of time it will take you to pay off your debt if you are committed to paying off your debt quickly.
Remember that these credit cards are going to be ideal for those of you who have excellent credit, as this will get you those low introductory interest rates. If your credit is not in great shape, you may want to go through a different avenue to pay off your debt.
When Should You Not Do A Balance Transfer?
If you have bad or damaged credit, a balance transfer is likely going to cost you more than it will save.
Taking out a personal loan may be a better option, especially if you can find a fixed-rate offer that is lower than your current interest rate.
While a balance transfer can be excellent for those struggling to pay off debt because of a high-interest rate, the goal is to use your low interest to pay off your balance immediately.
If you are just transferring your balance from card to card, getting a new one won’t fix your debt problem. You could end up adding to them even more because of fees, and the post-introductory high-interest rates.
If you don’t think you have the credit to get a low-interest rate, or you don’t feel that you could reasonably pay off more than half of your debt, you might want to consider doing a balance transfer.
So as you can see, consolidating your credit card debt into one easy low-interest card can be an effective way to pay off your debt. Just like hitting the sauce bottle just right makes the sauce start to flow, so does consolidating your debt help to actually get you out of debt sooner. Although both take work, the result is both satisfying and gratifying. Use the information wisely to decide as to whether or not a balance transfer is a good fit for you and your financial future.
YOUR TURN: Have you transferred a balance to a new card before? Did it help you pay off your debt faster as it did for me? What other tips would you give to someone looking into this process? Comment below!
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