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Should You Do a Balance Transfer For Life?

Aug 22, 2008
There are many types of balance transfers offers for many different credit cards. There are many different rates to choose from as well as different time lengths that the promotional periods are good for. A new type offer credit card companies have come up with is called a balance transfer for life. These types of balance transfers can be very powerful, but you first need to understand all the details before signing up for one.

When considering a balance transfer for life, you first need to look at the annual percentage rate being offered. You want to make sure that the rate is lower then any savings account rate. This way if you have cash in the bank at a lower rate you should just pay off the credit card with that money.

If the rate is decent, your next step is to understand the terms for the offer. For example the Advanta Platinum business card currently has a promo going for a 2.9% APR for the life of the balance. This means that you will receive a 2.9% APR on that as long as you haven't paid it off. This is pretty straight forward since there are no requirements to keep getting that 2.9% APR.

Another balance transfer for life offer is from Discover. They offer a 0% APR on the balance, but to keep the 0% for life promo, you need to make 2 purchases every month with the card. One thing to note is that purchases are paid off after any balance transfers, so you will have 0% on the transfer, but the 2 purchases a month will accrue interest at the regular card rate. So keep that in mind if you decide to accept this offer you could end up paying more in the long run due to the interest rate on your regular purchases.

One thing to note is that if you ever make a late payment or miss a payment, it is possible that the interest rate on that balance will jump to a large percentage. Make sure that you pay the bill on time every month to avoid losing out on a great rate offer.

Depending on how much money you need to balance transfer, a balance transfer for life can be a great tool to help you reduce your debt while paying less interest. You must pay attention to the terms and conditions of the offer since some offers require you to make additional purchases per month that can result in high interest rate balance.
About the Author
Steve provides information about balance transfer for life through his website on BudgetCents.
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