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Balance Transfers Tips

Balance transfers can be a good way to consolidate debt from multiple credit cards as well as a convenient way to give yourself more time to pay off something like a wedding or home improvement project. Credit cards often offer 0% balance transfers when customers open a new account. Usually the period of time for the balance transfer to remain at 0% is six months to one year. This gives cardholders plenty of time to pay down their debt without having to worry about racking up extreme interest charges.

Credit card balance transfers can help consumers with debt, but they can also cause further financial problems if you donât read the fine print. Check out these tips if you are considering a balance transfer:

Avoid spending frivolously simply because you have a 0% offer for however long. You donât want to dig yourself deeper in debt as a result of the enticing offer.
Make a plan to pay off your debt and stick to it.

Try to pay off everything within the grace period so you donât have to complicate things with another balance transfer.

Find a card with 0% interest on purchases as well as transfers. Also realize that you are usually required to pay off the balance transfer first, leaving any purchases to rack up fees according to the higher interest rate.

Keep track of your grace period. Mark your calendar with the date when your 0% rate expires and make a note a few weeks earlier to research other 0% balance transfer offers if needed.

Pay on time, every time. You donât want to miss a payment or your 0% rate may go up.

Balance transfers can be most successful for those consumers who are forward thinkers and those who are good with deadlines. Simple mistakes in your balance transfer can result in unanticipated fees and charges that will not help your financial situation. For your best shot at a successful balance transfer, speak with your financial advisor or at the very least, the creditor issuing the balance transfer, prior to signing up and initiating your transfer.

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