Zero interest credit card offers stuff your mailbox every day. They seem ok, but you’ve heard nightmare stories. Many of them are true, but you can use these same cards to quickly get yourself out of debt.
There are some extremely dangerous and tricky legal landmines to watch for, however. First, I will give you some tips that will quickly get you out of trouble using these 0% APR credit card offers.
Get approved for one of these 0 apr credit card offers for an amount no larger than one-half of what they would allow.
For example, if your lender says you could have $20,000of credit card debt, get a card that has a maximum of $10,000. Why? It will become clear later in this article, and it is critically important.
Read the very fine print of the 0% apr credit card offers and find out how long the 0% is for on transferred in debt.
Some places it is six months. Other places go for a year. Few cards go beyond 12 months.
What’s the big deal? Knowing the length of the term helps you plan, especially to plan when to start applying for a new one.
Start applying for other 0 Apr credit card offers well in advance of the cutoff date for the current 0 APR offering. This may take several weeks and you don’t want to be late.
This is where it is critically important that you didn’t get a maximum more than half of what you are allowed with the first card.
Just before your first 0% credit time is about to expire, transfer the debt to the second card that you have standing by that you have chosen from all the other 0 APR credit offers.
The balance will be lower than when you started, so you will right away see where this is leading.
Perhaps you started with $10,000 in debt, and now you are transferring perhaps only $9,300of debt and quite possibly less, depending on how much you are putting as a minimum monthly payment.
And, close out your first account and plan when you will start applying for your next victim.
Rinse and repeat.
Keep a close eye on expiry dates and any possible fees. There should be none. If there will be, you are better off to get another card at the beginning.
There should be plenty of 0 APR credit card offers to choose from.
Remember, the card companies are relying on your forgetting about the expiry date of the 0% offer. If you forget, you lose as there are usually penalties or fees. If you transfer in time, you win.
You get another six months or year of 0% borrowing that will allow you to pay the principle down quickly.
Here’s an extra tip; The minimum payment on your second card will be less than on your first because it is for a smaller amount.
If you keep paying the higher amount every month that you were paying on your first card, your balance will plummet and you will be free and clear of that debt much sooner again. Another benefit of the zero interest credit card offers if used properly to your advantage.
Now, I will give you some landmines to stay well clear of. After they have been explained to you, you will understand why they are so important and dangerous.
Don’t get a 0% APR credit card that goes beyond half of what your bank will allow.
If the credit department says you should have no more than let’s say $20,000 in credit card debt, apply for $10,000 maximum.
Find out well in advance how long it takes your payment to be posted to your account via whichever way you choose to pay the monthly payment on your 0 APR credit card offers.
Why? You will not be approved for a credit card for the same amount as your first if you are over half of what you are allowed.
The lenders look at your total debt including unused credit card debt as your total debt. Here is how it works.
You can get $20,000 of credit card debt, let’s say. You get $20,000 of credit at 0% and all is well till it’s 11 months down the road, let’s say and the 0% cutoff is a month away.
You happily apply for another $20,000 credit cards o that before your original year is up, you will transfer to the new card and get rid of the old one.
Your application is rejected, the letter stating that you are at your maximum right now! They don’t care and have no way of knowing if you would close the other account after transferring the funds.
Many people get caught with this one.
Maybe some of your original debt was at 16%, and now it could conceivably go to 29%! Only get a card that has a maximum of one-half of the maximum you are allowed.
The other landmine deals with how quickly your payment is posted to your account. The credit card companies are just waiting, drool slithering down their jaws just waiting for you to be late by even an hour.
Why? Because in all the fine print you agreed to in the beginning is a clause stating that any late payment, late by even a tiny amount is grounds for termination of the 0% deal. You will have to pay the regular amount from then on and that could be almost30% in the case of department store cards.
Even electronic payments may take a few days to post. Mailed-in checks take much longer.
Find out for sure. They will show no mercy on this one. Many people get burned with this. Thinking they paid immediately online, they go through the roof when they get a letter saying their payment was late and, oh so sorry, but now you have to go to our regular rate.
I cannot stress enough to make a little more than your minimum payment well ahead of time! This is where most people get burned and what the credit card companies and banks count on.