If you’re carrying credit card debt and actively trying to pay it off, but the interest is killing you, think about doing a balance transfer. Many cards have a 0% APR for the first six months or so if you transfer a balance over from a different card. That 0% APR can save you hundreds in interest, allowing you to pay off your balance sooner. But how exactly does a balance transfer work?
Let’s say I have a credit card from the company Pursue. I have a balance of $4,500 on it, at 14.99% APR. I’m having trouble paying it down because I can only pay the minimum, and the interest added to my balance each month basically negates the minimum payment I make.
But wait! The credit union HERO has just approved me for a new credit card with a $5,000 limit on it. If I transfer a balance onto the new HERO card within three months of opening the card, I get 0% APR—no interest–for six months on that balance. Hooray! I probably won’t be able to pay off the entire balance within six months. While paying it off in full while there is no interest applied is, of course, ideal, six months of no interest still saves a ton of money!
To initiate the process, I call up HERO. They verify my HERO account and ask for the card number and name on my Pursue account. I explain that I want to transfer all $4,500 from my Pursue card to my new HERO card. HERO sends a check for $4,500 to Pursue, who applies the check as a payment to my Pursue card, bringing that balance down to $0. HERO adds a $4,500 balance to my HERO card. Ta-da! Now I’m paying no interest on my balance and I can either keep my Pursue account open or close it after making sure there are no other minor charges on my account.
The first time I did a balance transfer, I was afraid it would be complex. But it really did just take about a ten minute call to my real-life credit union equivalent of HERO. If you’ve been worried about balance transfers being complicated, go ahead and give it a try—a few minutes on the phone could save you a ton of money on interest!
Keep track of your finances for FREE!
Making sure your credit is in good shape is essential to being a successful Thrifty Diva. You don’t want the mistakes of others to harm your financial future. Keep tabs on it yourself!
I use CreditSesame to keep track of my credit and I even get my Experian credit score for FREE on there anytime I log-in. Now that’s an awesome freebie right there.
Did you know that the recent FTC study found that over 20% of Americans or 40 Million credit reports have reporting errors that are costing consumers money in credit card interest rates and loans? Start your spring cleaning by making sure that your credit report does not contain erroneous information that could be impacting your credit score. Keep tabs on your credit report activities and your score by signing up for free credit monitoring and score services like Credit Sesame, so that you can easily protect your financial good standing.
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– Receive daily credit monitoring alerts
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– Limit ID Theft Damage
– Find Potential Errors Sooner
– Get Access to Better Loans and Save Money
I personally use CreditSesame to keep an eye on my credit rating and to make sure there’s nothing fishy on my credit report. It’s completely free and easy to use. No hidden fees! (Unlike some other credit monitoring offers I’ve seen, whereas this one is actually free.)
Simply go HERE and answer their one little question. Then post it to your Facebook wall and they’ll give you a $2 Amazon MP3 credit for free. 🙂
Yes, this sign up requires personal financial information. Why? They can’t check your credit report if you don’t supply the necessary info. I signed up with Credit Sesame a while back and I love it! I can easily keep tabs on my credit report, watch my credit score (which has been improving lately as I’m paying off debts), and it’s all completely free, no strings attached (unlike many other free credit score offers).
Now, I will tell you the truth, the credit score they give you is an estimate based on your credit report and not you official FICO score. However, when I recently applied for a loan and received a copy of my official credit score, Credit Sesame was pretty close on their estimate, only about 15 points off. So yes, the score they show you will indeed be a good indicator of where you stand financially. Sign up HERE to find out yours.
Register with VitaCost.com and they’ll e-mail you a $10 credit! Use that credit to order 4 Burt’s Bees Lip Balms for only $4.20 shipped.
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Discount: – $10
If you have an American Express credit card you’re in luck! To get your free $25 credit first you need to register your American Express card HERE now. Then come November 26th, which is Small Business Saturday, use your registered American Express credit card to make a purchase of $25 or more at a small business near you. Then you will receive a $25 credit refunded to your credit card. That means FREE money!
To find a small business near you, search HERE on their Facebook page app.