The best credit cards for paying off debt

0

There are times when you need to pay off your debts as soon as possible. Maybe you have balances on other credit cards with high APRs, or you have a big medical bill coming up. Although personal loans or debt consolidation loans are often the most profitable way to pay off debt, their approval may take longer.

A new credit card account can be opened faster – and you may be able to get one with a low introductory interest rate or 0%. And if you are able to check in advance if you are prequalifying, it will help you determine the chances of being approved beforehand. officially applying.

A word of warning: Paying off debt with a credit card is a risky gamble that should not be taken casually. Transferring debt from one card to another can result in a snowballing balance, so it’s important to calculate the fees and develop a repayment plan to avoid accumulating even more interest charges.

That said, if you’ve decided that a new credit card is your best option for dealing with your debt, there are a handful of cards with long 0% introductory periods and low APR. Here is what we recommend.

Introductory bonusN / A

APR14.49% – 24.49% * (Variable)

Recommended credit Excellent / Good

Reward rateN / A

Annual subscription$ 0 *

Introductory Purchase APR0% * for 20 billing cycles on purchases *

Introductory Balance Transfer APR0% * for 20 billing cycles on balance transfers *

Balance transfer fees Either 3% of the amount of each transfer or $ 5 minimum, whichever is greater

Balance transfer APR14.49% – 24.49% * (Variable)

Foreign transaction fees 2% of each overseas purchase transaction or overseas advance transaction in US dollars 3% of each overseas purchase transaction or overseas advance transaction in a foreign currency

Our opinion

After reviewing over two dozen credit cards, we found that the US Bank Visa® Platinum Card * has the longest interest-free repayment period. If you’ve got a big expense coming up, you’ll have room to breathe with 20 bill cycles of introductory payments without interest on purchases (14.49% to 24.49% variable APR thereafter).

You can also take advantage of the 0% introductory APR offer for 20 billing cycles on balance transfers made within the first 60 days of account opening. Once the 20 billing cycles are complete, your balance is assessed at a standard APR of 14.49% to 24.49% variable.

Introductory bonusN / A

APR14.74% – 24.74% (Variable)

Recommended credit Excellent, good

Reward rateN / A

Annual subscription$ 0

Introductory Purchase APR0% for 12 months on purchases

Introductory Balance Transfer APR 0% for 21 months on balance transfers

Balance transfer fees Balance transfer fees apply with this offer 5% of each balance transfer; $ 5 minimum

Balance transfer APR14.74% – 24.74% (Variable)

Late payment fees No late fees

Foreign transaction fees 3%

Our opinion

The Citi Simplicity® card is a great alternative to the US Bank Visa® Platinum card when you need time to pay off your debts. The card is no frills – there are no rewards to be earned, but you’ll get 21 months 0% introductory APR for balance transfers (and 12 months on purchases). After the introductory period, a variable APR of 14.74% to 24.74% applies. Plus, you have four months to request a balance transfer, which is longer than most cards allow.

The Citi Simplicity® Card is one of the most flexible and forgiving cards when it comes to paying off debt. If you tend to forget a payment every now and then, you won’t have to worry about late fees or an APR penalty.

Introductory bonusN / A

APR5.99% – 18.00% variable

Recommended credit N / A

Reward rateN / A

Annual subscriptionNothing

Introductory Purchase APRN / A

Introductory Balance Transfer APR0% introductory APR for 12 months on balance transfers

Balance transfer APR5.99% – 18.00% variable

Foreign transaction fees Nothing

APR penalty 18.00%

Our opinion

The Navy Federal Credit Union® Platinum * credit card is the cheapest card on our list of the best credit cards for paying off debt. In addition to the absence of an annual fee, this is the only card on our list with no balance transfer fees. That’s a big deal – most cards charge a minimum of 3% as a balance transfer fee. (That’s $ 300 on a $ 10,000 balance transfer.) If you plan on making multiple balance transfers, it’s good to know that you won’t have to pay a fee to pay off your debt.

Introductory bonusIntroductory Offer: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match any Cash Back Rewards you’ve earned at the end of your first year! So you could turn $ 50 in cash into $ 100. Or turn $ 100 into $ 200. There is no minimum spend or maximum rewards. Just a dollar-for-dollar match.

APR12.99% – 21.99% Variable

Recommended credit Fair / New to credit

Reward rate
  • Earn 5% cash back on your daily purchases at various locations each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay with PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum upon activation.
  • Earn 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases – automatically.

Annual subscription$ 0

Introductory Purchase APR0% for 6 months

Introductory Balance Transfer APR10.99% for 6 months

Balance transfer fees 3% introductory balance transfer fee, up to 5% fee on future balance transfers (see conditions) *

Balance transfer APR12.99% – 21.99% Variable

Late payment fees None the first time you pay late. After that, up to $ 40.

Foreign transaction fees Nothing

  • Earn 5% cash back on your daily purchases at various locations each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay with PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum upon activation.
  • Earn 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases – automatically.

Our opinion

Discover it® Student Cash Back * is designed for students who do not have a long, positive credit history. If you are a student, you will still have access to an introductory 0% APR on new purchases, albeit for only six months (12.99% to 21.99% variable APR thereafter). However, it can take quite a long time to pay off the debt before the standard APR starts. For balance transfers, Discover offers an introductory interest rate of 10.99% for the first six months after the initial transfer (then variable APR from 12.99% to 21.99%).

Introductory bonus$ 100 statement credit after spending $ 500 on qualifying purchases, within the first 3 months of opening the account

APR11.24% to 21.24% (variable)

Recommended credit Excellent credit

Reward rate
  • 1% unlimited cash back on all qualifying purchases

Annual subscription$ 0

Introductory Purchase APRN / A

Introductory Balance Transfer APR3.25% variable introductory APR for the first 36 months on all balance transfers within 60 days of account opening.

Balance transfer APR11.24% to 21.24% (variable)

  • 1% unlimited cash back on all qualifying purchases

Our opinion

Most of the best credit cards for paying off debt have relatively short interest-free periods. While the interest-free period is useful, the pressure to pay off your balance before your card’s interest rate returns to the standard APR could be too great.

If you have a larger balance that might prove difficult to pay off in a year or less, SunTrust has a different way of approaching debt repayment. You will benefit from an introductory interest rate of 3.25% variable, competitive with the rate of many personal loans. Better yet, the lower interest rate is in effect for three years, followed by an APR of 11.24% to 21.24% variable.

Faq

Can I pay off my debts with a credit card?

It is possible to pay off debt with a credit card. However, this might not be the best option unless you can make good use of an extended interest-free period of 12 months or more. Keep in mind that many of the best low interest or no interest offers are introductory and only for people with good credit or better. If you are overwhelmed with debt, it could hurt your credit score and you could have a hard time getting approved for an interest-free or low-balance card.

What is a 0% introductory period?

Some credit cards offer new cardholders a 0% (interest free) period for purchases and / or balance transfers. The interest-free term is usually only for a fixed term, for example 12 or 18 months. This means that any purchases or balance transfers you make during the qualifying period can be refunded without interest during the introductory period. Once the term expires, the balance will begin to earn interest at the standard interest rate.

What should I watch out for when transferring a balance?

Even if you get a balance transfer credit card with an interest-free period of 12 months or more, watch out for the balance transfer fees. These fees are typically 3% to 5% of the amount you plan to transfer. While it can be manageable if you’re only dealing with a few hundred dollars in debt, the transfer fees can add up. A $ 5,000 balance can cost you $ 250 to transfer if the fee is 5%.

What Credit Score Do I Need To Get Approved For A Debt Consolidation Credit Card?

Credit cards with the best introductory / balance transfer deals usually require a good credit score of 670 or higher. However, some card providers have a prequalification tool that tells you if you would be approved for a credit card before you apply, without affecting your credit score. Capital One, Discover, and Navy Federal all offer prequalification.

* All information about the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card, Navy Federal Credit Union Platinum Credit Card, Discover it Student Cash Back, and SunTrust Prime Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by CNET and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

The editorial content on this page is based solely on objective and independent reviews of our editors and is not influenced by advertising or partnerships. It was not supplied or ordered by a third party. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products or services offered by our partners.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.