Advice on transferring a balance

Discuss anything related to interest rates & fees, like balance transfer offers, low rate cards, annual fees, etc.
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Fleetoffoot4
 
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Advice on transferring a balance

Postby Fleetoffoot4 » Thu Jan 15, 2015 12:47 am

I have two CCs w/ relatively high APRs and want to consolidate the two in to one new card with - ideally - 0% AP for a period of 15 months or so following the balance transfer to allow me to pay off the combined balance before interest starts to accrue on the new card.

I have a good credit score, and my main concern is whether my other credit cards - or the card I will be transferring those balances to - will charge me a fee for doing so. Since I plan to transfer the balances and then close the two old credit cards, I would assume they plan to charge a fee. Just wondering if anyone has any insight regarding how much such a fee might be, or certain cards I might apply for to avoid any balance transfer fees.

Final related question. Any recommendations on good balance transfer cards? I have looked up the typical FICO and other lists of top balance transfer cards, but any other insight would also be helpful and very much appreciated.

Thank you.


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CarefulBuilder14
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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Thu Jan 15, 2015 2:27 pm

What are your current cards?

Most cards don't charge a fee if you transfer out a balance. Most cards do charge a fee if you transfer in a balance (usually about 3% of the balance you transfer).

Chase Slate is unusual in that it doesn't charge a fee to transfer in a balance. It doesn't offer rewards, though.

Why do you want to close the two old cards?
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Battery111
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Postby Battery111 » Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:01 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:What are your current cards?

Most cards don't charge a fee if you transfer out a balance. Most cards do charge a fee if you transfer in a balance (usually about 3% of the balance you transfer).

Chase Slate is unusual in that it doesn't charge a fee to transfer in a balance. It doesn't offer rewards, though.

Why do you want to close the two old cards?


Everything I've seen would lead me to go with a Slate if I needed to do a BT. I've been getting offers all the time from citi lately that are competitive to do a BT to my AA card, but if I were to open an account specifically to transfer a balance, I think it would be the slate.
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takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Tue Jan 20, 2015 9:31 am

Fleetoffoot4 wrote:I have a good credit score, and my main concern is whether my other credit cards - or the card I will be transferring those balances to - will charge me a fee for doing so.

As stated above, cards generally don't charge a fee for transferring a balance from but some do charge a fee for transferring a balance to the card. 3% is typical but you need to look at the terms for whatever balance transfer offer you're considering.

Fleetoffoot4 wrote:Any recommendations on good balance transfer cards?

Define "good". I'd be looking at the BT fees if I was looking for a BT card. If you narrow the list of BT cards to those with no fee you're already looking at a relatively short list.

Keep in mind that if your utilization is high that you may find it tricky to get the limit you need/want on a new card. Also keep in mind that utilization on the card that you BT to matters as well. If you can pay down the card quickly then high utilization might not be a problem. However, if the card remains at high utilization for a long time that you run the risk of adverse action.

Kevin86475391
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Re: Advice on transferring a balance

Postby Kevin86475391 » Sat Jun 27, 2015 1:41 am

I would recommend Slate. I believe they don't have a balance transfer fee if you do the transfer within the first 90 days (or maybe a different # of days) of opening the account. They'd usually then give you something like 6-18 months at the 0% balance transfer APR.

If you don't do Slate and aren't able to find another card that has a 0% transfer fee, typically those are about 3-5% and there's often a minimum fee they would charge if the percent fee comes out to less than that minimum fee amount.

I've personally never heard of a credit card company charging a fee for paying off their cards with a balance transfer. I'm not sure if that would even be legal. As far as I know It's usually viewed just like paying off the card in the regular way from your bank account would be.

I wouldn't recommend closing your two old accounts unless you're paying an annual fee on them that you want to avoid. Keeping them open keeps your total utilization lower, thus improving your credit score. It's also better for your average account age which also helps your credit. If there's no fee, or you're fine with paying it, I'd suggest just keeping them open. Cut them up or something if you're worried about using them and running your balance back up. They may get closed automatically by the issuer after awhile for inactivity, but that doesn't reflect badly on your credit. Personally, I'd even recommend still using them for like one small purchase every couple of months to prevent this from happening, because from a credit score stand point you're much better off leaving them open and just not (or very very barely) using them. Again, unless you're trying to avoid an annual fee or just really hate the issuer or something.



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