Everyone wants to save some money, whether it’s trawling the web for the best deals on electrical goods or switching energy providers to take advantage of special offers and better rates. However, one thing many people might not have considered is the many ways you can use your credit card as a way to manage your money better.
One of the great things about balance transfer credit cards is that they can often significantly reduce the amount of cash you have going out each month. After all, why would you want to pay more in interest and fees than you have to? So which type of credit card is best? Well, there are particularly generous 0% balance transfer offers available with most providers nowadays – the trick is getting one that has a nice long period where you get to keep this rate so you have even more time to better shape up your finances.
Unfortunately, while balance transfer credit cards can save you loads if they are used correctly, it is important to remember that the provider will also want to make money – so there are inevitably going to be charges and other things to think about.
When you compare credit cards online, the introductory period is one of the key things you should be looking at. Obviously, the big feature people look at is the rate of interest – and quite rightly. But, as it can be anything between three and 18 months, you could find it actually isn’t worth paying the fees to transfer the balance. With this in mind, try looking for a card that offers at least nine to 12 months on the introductory period.
Balance transfer fee
As we’ve mentioned, balance transfer fees can crop up on many credit cards, so make sure this factors into your calculations when looking at potentially switching to a new card. If the 0% introductory period is short but the fee is high, the change to a new piece of plastic might be best avoided.
Post introductory period interest rates
The introductory period can promise you the world, but once your deal ends – provided you don’t hop to another 0% balance transfer deal – you could be stuck with a not-so-tempting interest rate. Of course, some people like to hop as much as they can, but this can have an impact on your credit score.
Focus on what you want to achieve
Rewards credit cards, inviting balance transfers and free stuff can be great, but if your aim is to get your finances in order then make sure this is what you stick to. A balance transfer credit card will certainly help with this, but making a lengthy 0% deal should be your ultimate priority. That said, if you find a card that offers all of this – great!