Are you fed up with paying through the nose for irrational interest rates? Have you at least once craved to escape the vicious circle of hefty credit card fees? Hop on board because we’ll share smart insider tips on how to protect your finances and make the right financial decisions. Owning a credit card to cater to occasional needs and whims doesn’t always have to be the death penalty of your income.
You can pay a credit card with another card, but you must be aware of specific terms and limitations. You must be creative and wary of underlying fees. Little traps that cost you a fortune are omnipresent, so follow our advice to refinance your debt hassle-free and without additional charges.
Step-By-Step Guide on Balance Transfers
Balance transfers have proven to be the most rational thing to do when paying off existing credit cards with new ones. Though the process is simple, it’s not instant and can take up to several weeks to come to fruition. Above all, you must have a card with an introductory 0% APR to move your balance. Here is what to do:
- Request the balance transfer. Requests for transfer of credit card balance can go through via your account online, or you can call the issuer of the new card over the phone. Often, you get convenience checks with special promotions that you can use to pay off the debt on another account. Always read the terms before you click ‘agree.’
- Transfer processing and approval. The final approval might take up to a fortnight, but balance transfers get executed directly. Next, the issuer of the new card will pay your old debt with the approved amount and notify you thereof. Finally, you’ll get your new account debt increased by a transfer fee between 3% and 5% of the transferred amount.
- Start paying off your balance. When you settle your another card debt, continue paying down your new one. Get the maximum of the promotional period with an introductory 0% APR because later on, banks start applying regular interest rates.
How can I pay my credit card bill with another credit card?
Banks don’t allow direct monthly payments since this would become a never-ending, domino-effect circle of indebtedness. Yet, the truth is there are two workarounds to pay your credit card debt with the help of another card. The two most common ways are cash advance and balance transfers. Let’s elaborate on them in more detail.
Method #1: Cash Advance
To pay the outstanding debt on the first card, consider a cash advance against the second one. In a word, you go to the nearest ATM, take out money, and pay your credit card bill. It’s a pretty straightforward approach, but it involves some less-known disadvantages that we’re going to expose.
Why a cash advance might be a lousy idea lies in the accompanying fees. Such fees are usually about 5% of the total amount. For instance, if you take out $4,000 to pay off a debt in the same amount, you’ll be charged an additional $200. In short, your debt balance increases by $200.
Another trap behind this scheme is the financial risk you’re taking. Refinancing a previous debt means paying higher interest rates than those on the outstanding balance before. Above all, cash advance limits are way lower than the credit line, and you get grace periods waived. So, if you want to keep your rating decent, maybe you should avoid this refinancing option.
Method #2: Balance Transfer
Imagine a 0% balance transfer to pay your credit card with another! Even better, you can eliminate a high-interest card of up to 20% interest and consolidate it to a promotional zero APR. This option is particularly wise if you have burdened yourself with a high-interest credit card. Anyways, bear in mind that though effective, balance transfers on credit card can be tricky if you don’t know the basics.
Take some time to explore current offers on the market and hunt down exceptional offers with favorable terms. Most credit card providers give promotional deals to transfer a balance to their card. Plus, they guarantee that you’ll enjoy low, or barely existent, rates for up to a year and a half.
When it comes to the setbacks of the transfer balance on credit card approach, there is no risk-free variant when it comes to debts. Firstly, once you miss a payment, consider your promotional deal finished. Moreover, late payments due to job loss or medical issues might place you in a worse, dead-end situation than before the balance transfer. Secondly, this strategy isn’t suitable for people who make minimum payments and are barely holding on. Lastly, balance transfers entail an average fee of about 3%.
Taking out a personal loan is a prudent alternative if you aim to consolidate your credit card debt. Once you manage to qualify for a personal loan, you’ll ensure lower APR, but still pay more than a 0% introductory APR. Nevertheless, if you’re committed to paying down on time, debt consolidation loans can do wonders for your balance.
Hiring a credit counselor is a last-resort option when things start being messy, and you’re overwhelmed by your financial situation. Accredited agencies can help you explore the available options on the market and choose what’s best suited for you.
Is it smart to pay off a credit card with another credit card?
In most cases, this is a prudent step to take. An approach particularly useful if your APR rate is increasing super-fast and reaching up to 20%. What you must do is look for promotional credit card deals even before interest starts accruing with an unbearable pace.
A smart financial decision is to pay off balances from the highest interest rate to the lowest. Not only you’ll save hundreds of dollars, but you’ll also pay them off faster. Therefore, we strongly suggest you stick to 0% interest offers to cover and close credit cards that exhaust your funds.
Can you transfer a credit card balance to another credit card?
As luck might have it, you can. If you qualify, it shouldn’t be an issue to transfer your credit card balance to another one with a lower interest. In most cases, you can even find 0% APR deals. What you must bear in mind is that regular payments are inevitable, or you’ll lose the benefit of paying less.
Can you pay a store card with a credit card?
Yes, you can, and consider this a smart move provided that you’re not striving to extend your card’s credit limit. Closing a store card with a credit card means that your primary goal is tackling debt and not spending until infinity.
Store cards are tempting since they promise discounts, rewards, and payment of large purchases over an extended period. However, APRs are huge, so we urge you to transfer your debt from store cards to a regular credit card. Not only will you reduce the interest rate, but you’ll also be more flexible in spending.
Whatever mechanism you opt for to settle your credit card debt, getting serious about your obligations is essential. Neither balance transfers nor cash advances will work out for you if you keep on overspending. Never underestimate the power of drawing up a budget for yourself.
Calculate how much you earn and spend each month and determine the amount you can pay monthly. Resolving issues at their root is the golden rule for not letting them develop and get complex.
So, what do you think about this guide? Did you find it helpful? Would you add some personal tips and tricks on the topic? We’d love to hear your comments and strategies for tackling credit card debt below.