Step 1: Transfer Your Balance to a No Interest Credit Card
The first thing we need to do to implement this brilliant plan is to stop paying interest on your existing credit card balance. Step 1 actually uses the banks’ marketing offers to your advantage. Simply find a card offering a long “0% intro APR balance transfer” promotional offer, and transfer your balance to it.
There are cards which offer new customers a long period of time (often as much as 18 months) during which the card charges no interest on all balances transferred to it. Make sure there’s no balance transfer fee as well.
To show how this works, just think of this: on a $10,000 balance, $150 of a $200 monthly payment would get vacuumed up by interest charges.** That leaves only $50 of your $200 that actually reduces your balance, the rest goes right into the bank’s pockets.
Use our reviews below to find a card which offers the longest possible no-interest period while charging low, or even no fees. Moving your balances to the card you choose will stop the bleeding, allowing you to move on to step two.
Step 2: Payoff Your Balance During The 0% Period
Once you’ve transferred your balances and put a stop to the bank’s interest charges, it’s time to capitalize on the interest-free period to really break free of the debt.
The best part of this is how simple it is: just keep making the payments you used to make when you had to pay big interest payments.
Going back to the $10,000 example above, if you transferred that balance onto a card like the Chase Slate (which offers 15 months of 0% intro APR with no transfer fee) and maintained the same $200 monthly payment, you can pay your debt down much more quickly.
As you can see, without using the 0% card, the same $200 monthly payments barely make any headway. It’s like swimming upstream, or walking while taking a step back for every two steps forward. That’s no way to swim or walk, and attempting to pay off your cards while paying high card interest rates is no way to manage your finances.
Move your balances onto one of the cards below, stop getting crushed by interest, and start making real progress toward getting rid of your card debt.
Our Top 0% Intro APR Balance Transfer Cards
The No Transfer-Fee Card
15 Months of 0% Intro APR. No balance transfer fee. No annual fee.
The Chase Slate is tied as our highest-rated balance transfer card, and for good reason. It charges no fee for transferring your balance to it in the first two months, no annual fee, and no interest on balances transferred for a full 15-month 0% intro APR period. This makes it a phenomenal tool to gain control of your credit card debt, as you can make a costless balance transfer, then use the 15-month interest grace period to pay down your balance.
The Verdict: If you don’t need the entire 18 months offered by the BankAmericard, this can be efficient since it doesn’t have a balance transfer fee. No transfer fee and no annual fee, combined with the 0% intro APR means that this is really free money for the 15 month term, no catches.
Most Appropriate For: Those who want a no-fee way to stop paying interest, and possibly pay off the cards during that breather. Those with good rather than excellent credit.
Least Appropriate For: Those who pay off their balances every month would be better served getting a card paying high rewards.
Recommended credit: Just Good. The Chase card has the most lenient credit requirements of our top balance transfer cards.
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