Low Interest Credit Cards: A Thing of the Past?
With interest rates rising, low or zero percent credit cards may soon become a thing of the past. However, the wise shopper can still secure a low rate by carefully shopping around. Here are some ways you still get a bargain rate card: Contact Your Current Provider. Chances are the interest rate with your current credit card provider has been inching up for the better part of the past year. Whereas previously you could have had a 5% rate, the card may now be up to 8, 9, or even 10%. What can you do? Contact your credit card provider and ask for a lower rate.
They can tell you no, at the risk of you going elsewhere, or give you a fixed lower rate. If your provider refuses to budge, see if they would consider a lower rate for a certain period of time, let’s say for six or twelve months. The added savings of the temporary lower rate can be beneficial especially if you have a big purchase coming up that you plan on paying off within 6 to 12 months. Shop Around. Like most Americans, you probably are receiving solicitations in the mail for credit cards.
If that is the case, find the plan that works the best for you and apply. Usually, a low introductory rate is offered as well as balance transfer options. If the card has no annual fees and no additional fees are assessed for transferring funds, go with the new company especially if the rate is lower. Consolidate Your Debt. If your current credit card provider won’t lower their rate and the new card company’s rate isn’t quite as low as you expected, consider obtaining a debt consolidation loan through a lending institution. To get the lowest rate possible you may have to offer up something as security – for example, the equity in your house – to obtain the lowest rate. Do this only if you have sufficient equity and can reasonably expect to pay the loan or line of credit off. The Federal Reserve Bank has raised interest rates ten times since June 2004. Still, lending institutions can and are offering lower rate credit cards and loans. As a savvy consumer you can and will find the best deals out there.
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