A few months ago, I managed to get my hands on a new credit card with a 0% introductory rate for 12 months. I transferred the balance from my other credit card, which means that if I can manage to pay it off before the intro period ends, I won’t have to pay a cent more in interest, beyond what I’ve already wracked up.
It’s a bit easier said than done, perhaps.
Just yesterday, I have to plunk an additional $350 on that credit card in order to pay for needed repairs on my car. I would have paid for it in cash, if I could have – I’m not happy with the idea of putting anything on my card, even if it is at 0% interest.
The key to a 0% APR balance transfer is to make a commitment to pay it off before the intro period ends. For me, this means paying more than three times the amount I’ve been paying monthly to the card. It’s going to be tight. It’s going to be painful. But it’s exactly what I need to do to pay off the card.
The other good thing about transferring my balance is that it leaves the original card free and clear, so that I can begin to use it responsibly again. There was a time (circa early 2006) when I only put small purchases on that card, and paid it off every month – never carrying a balance. Now I have a chance to get back to that, and enjoy the float and rewards points that using the card can offer me.
After I’m done paying off my credit card balance, it will be on to the next thing that’s bothering me: paying off the interest on my student loans!