Interest rates on credit cards have been on the rise in recent years, making it more expensive to carry a balance. Fortunately, there are several ways to cut your credit card costs despite the higher rates. One option is to transfer your balance to a card with a lower interest rate.
Many cards offer introductory rates of 0% for 12-18 months, so this can be a great way to save money on interest. Another option is to get a personal loan from a bank or credit union; however, there are many factors to consider when getting a personal loan.
Personal loans usually have much lower interest rates than credit cards, so this can be a great way to save money on interest as well. Just be sure to shop around for the best rates and terms before taking out a loan.
Finally, you can always just pay off your balance in full each month to avoid paying any interest at all. This may not be possible for everyone, but if you can swing it, it’s the best way to avoid paying any interest whatsoever.
Here are some other tips for cutting down on credit card costs.
Shop Around for the Best Credit Card Rates
When it comes to interest rates, a better deal is always out there. Research different credit card offers and find the one that offers the lowest interest rate or gives you cash back for everyday purchases you already make. You may be surprised to find a card that offers a lower interest rate and more benefits than you thought.
Consolidate Your Debt on One Card
If you have multiple credit cards, it can be helpful to consolidate your debt onto one card that has the lowest interest rate. This will allow you to pay off your balances faster and potentially save money on interest rates.
Take Advantage of Low-rate Promotions
Many credit card companies offer low-rate promotions from time to time which are different from introductory promotional APRs. If you can find a promotion that fits your needs, such as a better pay-over-time rate or statement credits, it’s worth taking advantage of. This can help save you money on interest rates while also providing benefits like cash back or travel rewards.
Use the Most Out of Your Rewards Programs
Many credit card companies offer rewards programs that can be valuable when cutting costs from your budget. This can include earning points and redeeming them for cash back, hotel stays, or other rewards.
It’s essential to weigh the benefits of each program carefully to see which one is best for your situation, though, as having a card that requires you to buy things you normally wouldn’t, will only contribute to your debt and make it difficult to ever improve your financial health.
Downgrade to a $0 Yearly Fee Card
Many credit cards have hefty annual fees that can quickly add up, especially if you don’t get enough value from the perks that justify paying hundreds in fees yearly. If you can find a card that doesn’t have an annual fee, it may be worth downgrading from your premium-tier card. You may lose some crucial benefits that your yearly fee pays for, but it could be worth it if the money is tight.
Reduce Your Debt Load With Debt Consolidation Loans
If you need to take on additional debt to cover your expenses, debt consolidation loans may be your best option. These loans are similar to balance transfer cards as they combine multiple smaller debts into one large loan, which can help reduce your interest rates and make it easier to repay your debts.
Plus, consolidating your debt with a loan instead of a credit card can help improve your credit score, which could lead to lower borrowing costs in the future.
The Bottom Line
There are a few creative ways to cut your credit card costs even as interest rates rise. Downgrading to a card without an annual fee, consolidating your debts, and using reward programs can help you shave off cents on the dollar in interest costs.