Consumers must note that credit card companies are not going to offer the benefits of low interest rate credit cards unless there was something in it for them. The trick is to stay smart and make the most of their reward offers.
Best Low Interest credit card Offers
According to CompareCards.com both Citi® Platinum Select MasterCard and Discover More Card offer exciting introductory rates of 0% interest for 18 months (City Platinum) and 12 months (Discover More). Citi Platinum charges just 9.99% interest on monthly purchases, while Discover More charges a marginally higher rate of 11.99% as its regular APR rate. One interesting difference between the two the cards is that one can apply for a Citi Platinum credit with a ‘good’ credit history, Discover More will only given to applicants with an ‘excellent’ credit history.
Best Cash Back Low Interest Credit Cards
Some exciting credit cards which offer high cash back returns are Citi CashReturns Card and Citi Diamond Preferred Rewards Card. Citi CashReturns Card has long been considered by industry pundits as one best reward cards in the market. It offers unlimited cash back returns (1%) on all credit card purchases. In fact, every time the card gets swiped at one of the 400 leading retailers registered with Citi Bank, it earns the user an average of 5% cash back bonus return.
Citi Diamond Credit Card too offers 5 ThankYou points on every $1 spent on purchases made in supermarkets, drugstores and gas stations. These ThankYou points can be redeemed for travel rewards, gift cards and other exciting merchandise.
Remember the following points to make the best of the introductory offers:
Read the fine print
It is the policy of every company to make the attractive portions of their schemes most prominent leaving out other less attractive details to be read in the fine print. This is a marketing technique employed almost everywhere to keep you focused on the aspects the companies want to and distract attention from the rest. The Credit Card business is no different. Go through the prints thoroughly before accepting any offer or you might be in for a surprise later on.
Calculate Interest Rates and Annual Fees Charged by Low Interest Cards
Doing the math is going to help you assess whether the offer would do you any good. For example, if the introductory APR is 3.99% for a period of six months, the balance transfer fee being 4% with no ceiling, the overall interest is (3.99 + (2 x4)) ie11.99%! Therefore, it would only be pragmatic to transfer balances the rate on which is higher than 11.99%. Use the online credit calculators for this purpose and finally make an informed decision if the benefit is worth your effort.
Compare the Reward and Cash Back Benefits offered by Low Interest Cards
When you see an email with low interest credit card note the balance transfer fee and also the interest rate. Then, make a search online and compare it with other credit cards. There are loads of good credit card deals in the market as the money lending institutions tend to compete with each other over rates. Also keep an eye out for the really good offers like the ones without an expiration date.
They stay valid until the full balance has been cleared. Try and avoid making any balance transfer fee payments even if it is nominal. If you request the banks, sometimes they even do away with or reduce the fee! Otherwise, follow step 2 and decide whether the fee is worth the benefits in terms of interest savings.
Make Your Credit card payments on Time
This is perhaps the most important aspect because if you do not pay up on time, it can have disastrous consequences. Not only will you lose a good credit standing but the low interest rate will hike up to an obscene one even before the introductory period ends. This fact is almost always included in the fine prints so again, be alert.
So ultimately we come to the question as to how the transferring of balances is going to affect your credit history. Some people say it is risk prone because you are leaving many open credit accounts. There are others who do not subscribe to this view. Expert consensus, however, suggests that this activity is not going to badly affect the credit ratings until you overdo it. Do not be wary of the low interest offers; they really come in handy if you use them right.