Balance transfer credit cards are an excellent way to save money and simplify life. Not only can you lower your monthly payments or consolidate your credit card accounts, but you can even improve your credit. All this only occurs if you prepare properly, so please read on.The first step is clearing your schedule for a few hours to devote to executing the balance transfer of your credit card transactions. You can try to complete the process in small periods of time over a few weeks, but that is inefficient and could lead to you feeling frustrated.
Research Balance Transfer Credit Cards
Research the balance transfer policies of your existing credit cards and prospective credit cards. Determine current interest rates, transfer fees and any other fees that might apply. Fees can be surprisingly high. If they outweigh the interest savings, than you must rule out these balance transfer credit cards. Research is easy. Simply call the credit card company and speak to a sales representative. They are legally required to tell you of all the fees associated with your account, or direct you to documentation of those fees. If you don’t have a paper version of your customer service agreement, look online. Print it out and highlight the important sections relevant to a credit card transfer, during the phone conversation. Make note of the representative’s name, employee number, and direct number if available, so that you can follow up with that person later if necessary.
Credit card transactions
Next, compare savings for a hypothetical balance transfer of your credit card transactions to each prospective credit card. Use the assumption that you will pay the same amount each month, regardless of minimum payment required and see the difference in total balance owed. Whichever credit card would be lowest after each payment transaction is your best choice.
Credit card transfer
Consideration of your credit history is important. A credit card transfer creates a new entry on your credit report, which may help or hinder your efforts to build good credit. Any of your accounts in good standing that you have maintained for many years are a strong asset to your credit score. Transferring your balances to a new credit card is a bad idea unless there are significant savings. You may even ask a service representative to negotiate terms based on transferring balances from other cards. Card balances held for short periods of time, or in sub-par standing do not help your credit so do not hesitate to transfer them. Of course, always pay the new credit card on time.