Big Lots Credit Card = Big Trouble For You

Posted by CreditCardGuru

Big Lots storeAlthough they don’t advertise it much, Big Lots does offer credit for financing big purchases like furniture. They don’t have the application online but you can find it at the store.

Should you get it? Not exactly and here’s why…

Problem #1: Strange Fees

We all know banks love nickel and diming us with fees, but the Big Lots credit card charges some that I just don’t see elsewhere…

reissued card fee

Really? A re-issued card fee? That might be expected on a prepaid Rush Card, but not on a credit card! In fact, I can’t think of any other cards that charge that.

In addition to that, the Big Lots application says you “may be charged” a fee for the following:

  • Fee for payments made by phone
  • Fee for requesting copies of statements
  • Problem #2: Steep interest rates

    OK, now this one isn’t that surprising – I don’t think anyone would expect a credit card from Big Lots to have a low APR. But regardless it’s still worth pointing out, because after all, the whole point of shopping at their stores is to save money, right?

    Well based on these APRs which were listed on their website, it doesn’t exactly look like you’ll be getting a bargain…

    • Variable Standard APR = 24.99%

    I didn’t see anything in the fine print which specified if its possible or not to get a better rate.

    Problem #3: “No interest”

    12 months no interestOn their website I saw a banner for “12 months no interest furniture financing” and next to it was a little asterisk. Well make sure you read the fine print and see what that asterisk corresponds to, because this is not the same as getting a no strings attached 0%.

    fine print for Big Lots financing

    Make sure you understand what that means. With the Big Lots card you will be charged interest from day 1, retroactively, if you don’t pay off the full amount within that 12 month time frame.

    In other words, the “no interest” only holds true if you pay off the full purchase within those 12 months.

    The Lesson: Make their card your last choice

    I can’t say you should ignore this card entirely, because if your credit is terrible then this might be the best you can do. But before you apply for it, try and get something better. Here are some entry-level cards I recommend checking out.

9 comments... read them below or add your own

  1. Valorie April 1, 2014 at 4:38PM

    I priced a chair at Big Lots that was on sale through 3/31/2014.
    I went back to purchase it on 3/28/2014 and the store had signs
    everywhere saying they no longer accepted the Big Lots Credit Card.

    That is so wrong! I have to cancel the card now because it is useless!

    • Big Nots April 16, 2014 at 8:55AM

      I just found this out last night when I opened my Big Lots capitol One bill. “effective March 31st the account is terminated”. I just got this on April 14th!. I called Capitol One and they said they didn’t have any specifics(yeah right)but that they were no longer servicing Big Lots accounts. I have had this account since 2009. When I first opened it to buy furniture had a credit limit of $1600.00. Paid it off in large payments way ahead of 12 month terms, but as soon as it was paid off they dropped my limit to $405.00.
      DO NOT cancel your card! That will have a negative affect on your credit score. Capitol One has already closed it, it should reflect “closed by grantor” or something to that effect. Even if you close an account with a zero balance and good payment history it will have a negative effect on your credit. I’ve read many comments of people being denied card use while in the checkout of the store. Pathetic customers relations on the part of Big Lots for not informing it’s customers.

  2. andi August 24, 2013 at 2:32PM

    None of this sounds unusual, not even reissue card fee, most banks will do this as well.

  3. Shannon July 25, 2013 at 7:36AM

    My wife and I just purchased an Ashley sectional sofa during a 20% off sale and used the zero interest for six months promotion. We were planning on using a credit card at 11.9% interest and having it paid off in two months. The 6 months 0% interest offer is going to save us a few dollars in interest. But again, we had always planned to have the couch paid off in two months anyway. So in this case, the store credit card works in our favor. I got the impression from the furniture department employee while we were applying that they get a LOT of applications with a very low approval rate. The lady phoning in the application seemed very surprised when our app came back approved at well over the cost of the sofa. So my guess is this particular store credit card’s bizarre fee structure is an attempt to recoup some of the losses that is sure to come from issuing credit to a higher risk, lower income demographic. We often buy furniture at Big Lots but very little else that’s large enough a purchase to require financing, so this might well be the last time we use this card.

  4. Jenn June 24, 2013 at 5:48AM

    Yes Laura, you are right about the interest free thing. I have bought many things like this, the point is you have to have it paid off in the amount of time specified. My advise to anyone considering this is to make sure you can make the minimum payment asked and if you see that amount each month isn’t going to get it paid off in time then I suggest you pay extra each month. I try to buy things late in the year so that if I can’t get it paid off in time I can rely on my tax refund to pay the remaining balance before my contract runs out. It’s a no brainer people.

  5. Anna May 16, 2013 at 8:27PM

    I got married and needed to change the last name on one of my credit cards, which I was happy with the company up to this point. I was requested of them to send in my original documentation and written previous info, and current info. I thought “no problem” they’re just being extra careful with identity theft, the next thing the agent said “with a $25 payment to re-issue another card”…….uhmmm, NO! They lost a customer just that quick. So, $5 fee is nothing to what some companies have!

  6. Max April 29, 2013 at 2:20PM

    I agree with Laura. It’s not the greatest sounding deal, but then again no department store credit cards are. That being said, this all sounds pretty standard for the type of credit it is.

  7. Laura April 12, 2013 at 7:27AM

    Apparently you don’t do much business with 12 month no interest type of cards or programs. All programs like this add interest from date of purchase, it is not added to your balance until the promo period had ended. If you have paid the balance in full no interest gets added to your account. If you still have a balance, even $1 all the interest for the entire promo period gets added to your account. No payment/no interest programs work the same way. You are not required to make ANY payments during the promo period but if the balance is not paid in full by the end of the promo you get charged all the interest from date of purchase. This is nothing new & Big Lots is not being “sneaky” with these terms.

  8. peth January 7, 2013 at 6:06PM

    I never heard of reissue fees so I’m glad you told me about Big Lots. I would have gotten a card if I made a big purchase there.

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