Be Smart With Your Credit Card
We all wish that our credit cards were interest free all the time. How much pleasure would it be to know that what you spend is what you pay back and there would be no interest to pay. What is happening is the credit card companies are fighting it out to see who can get the most customers and one way is to offer us 0% interest deals.
The credit card companies are offering introductory offers including 0% on balance transfers and purchases for 6 or 9 months, so everything you buy is interest free how great is that! These offers are becoming more popular by the month, the credit card companies realise we will go with these credit cards first and that interest free deals for any period of time is a great way to pull in the customers.
Break free from your high interest credit card…
All credit cards can be interest free if you pay off your full balance on time and at the end of every month, but most of us cannot afford to do this. When the APR comes into force, usually a typical rate of 15-20% will be charged. There are however some better rates about if you are willing to search for them, including a rate of 9% and maybe even lower. Always check what your rate will be once the introductory period is over.
Many credit card holders are using the 0% deals to their advantage. The term “Rate Tart” is used to describe people who transfer their balance from one card on to a credit card that has the 0% deal. This will cut out the interest payments on their existing card, however, you really have to keep on top of this especially if you have more than one credit card, as you do not want to get confused as to when and where your balance transfers are due.
Take advantage of the 0% deals…
There has never been a better time to take advantage of these great 0% deals with the big companies fighting for your business. If you’re using the 0% deals for transferring your balance and are intending to use the card after the interest free period, double check the interest rate once the introductory period is over as it may be higher than the card you have.
· Switch your balance to a 0% deal
· Check the APR that will be charged when the 0% deal is over
· Start searching for a new credit card 4-6 weeks before your existing deal runs out
0% deals are great as long as you watch what you are doing. The more cards you have the more chances are of getting transfer balance dates confused, but if you have a good head on your shoulders and are well organized then you will benefit greatly.
Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards - Helping to Eliminate Debt
If you are seriously looking to eliminate debt, then you need to consider applying for a balance transfer credit card. With the help of balance transfer cards, you can get yourself back on track and back in control of your finances.
The Cold, Hard Facts
Astoundingly, the average household in America has a revolving debt, which is basically credit card debt, of over $9,000. If you are among them, you can take comfort in knowing that you are not alone. At the same time, you shouldn't get too comfortable. Debt means bills and, more often than not, the payment of finance charges. Basically, being in debt costs you money. Fortunately, balance transfer credit cards and a few other easy to follow steps can help you get out of debt and stop paying high interest fees.
Don't Spend Above Your Means
The first step in getting out of debt is to stop spending above your means. Obviously, if you are spending more than you are capable of paying back, you will only dig your hole of debt deeper. In addition, if you are already in debt, you need to cut back your spending to the bare minimum. After all, your goal is to reduce your debt, not to keep adding to it.
To help you keep your spending within your means, it is wise to set up a budget. For many, it is difficult to restrict spending because we have become so used to the easy access provided by credit cards. When you sit down and form a budget, however, you will probably be amazed when you realize how much wasteful spending you engage in without even thinking about it. In fact, you can probably eliminate some expenses without really noticing. Of course, you will still need to put money aside for regular expenses such as rent or mortgage, insurance, and food. You can also set aside a little "play money," but be sure to never spend more than what you have set aside.
Set the Plastic Aside
After you use your balance transfer credit card to consolidate your debts, set the card aside. First of all, balance transfer credit cards often have a high APR on purchases made outside of the transfer. After all, the credit card company needs to make up for the loss somehow. Secondly, carrying your credit card with you only makes it more difficult to resist temptation and impulse buying. Instead, use cash whenever possible. Many people don't truly attach the cash value of what they are spending when the use a credit card. Counting out your money and watching it leave your hands and go into the cashier's hands, however, really makes you notice.
In fact, research has shown that people spend an average of 112% more when making purchases with a credit card as opposed to making purchases with cash. With this kind of data, it is no surprise that most merchants accept credit cards or even encourage the use of credit cards.
Watch Your Interest Rate
If you absolutely must use a credit card and carry a balance on it, make sure it has a low interest rate. If your balance transfer credit card has a high interest rate on purchases, set it aside and use a different card for every day use. The amount of money you can save by using a credit card with a lower interest rate is outstanding and can translate to hundreds of dollars in savings every year. Then, make sure to apply the money you save back to toward paying off your debt. When you find yourself debt-free, the small sacrifices you made to get there will be well worth it.