Balance transfer tricks that customers should be wary of


ADVERTISING DISCLOSURE: is an independent, advertising-supported web site. receives compensation from most credit card issuers whose offers appear on our site. Compensation from our advertising partners impacts how and where their products appear on our site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear within review lists. has not reviewed all available credit card offers in the marketplace.

Credit Card Applications » Research » Guides » Balance Transfer Cards » Balance transfer tricks that customers should be wary of

Balance transfer tricks that customers should be wary of

The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

Balance transfer deals could be very profitable to the customers. Sometimes they could prove disastrous too. This is why, irrespective of how attractive the balance transfer offer is, credit card customers should be wary of the fine print and all the terms and conditions. Here are some of the tricks credit card issuers use on balance transfer offers.

Varying promotional periods

Although balance transfer cards are promoted with the highest promotional period on offer, it might not be the same for all customers. Those with excellent credit rating often get the highest promotional period while those with fair or good credit, get much lesser. This promotional period could vary between 6-18 months or even more. So, it is advisable to find out what the promotional period in your case is instead of being surprised later with an outstanding balance due and the promotional period expiring.

Balance transfer fee

Credit card customers should look at the fine print to find out what the balance transfer fee is. This fee will eat into the savings that you will make through the balance transfer, which is why you must know how much you are losing because of the transfer.

Initial down payment

A lot of balance transfer cards do not mention this, but it could be one of the most important requirements for opening the new card account. This initial down payment could be anywhere between 10-20% or even more. However, it could influence the decision to go with the new card as it may make the deal not so financially profitable after all.

High APR

Balance transfer cards might be offering 0% APR for more than a year. But the savings could just as well be eroded if the APR for the credit card after the promotional period is quite high. In fact, in some cases, it is so high that you cannot use the credit card for fear of running outstanding balances that will incur huge interests.

Applicability of promotional rates

Not all balance transfer cards allow the promotional rate on both balance transfer amount and purchases you have made with the new card. Sometimes it is only on the balance transfer amount and you should be careful. The trick here is that, when you payback the dues, the credit card companies are used to adjusting this towards the amounts on which there is no interest. This effectively means those amounts on which there is interest rate applicable, are still outstanding.

Disclaimer: This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer(s). Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer(s), and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer(s). Reasonable efforts are made to present accurate information, however all information is presented without warranty. Consult a card's issuing bank for the terms & conditions.
All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.
Add to Favorites:
Get the latest news, articles and expert advice delivered to your inbox. It's FREE.

Related Research:

Autumn 2018: Best Rewards Credit Cards for Thanksgiving Shopping

Autumn 2018: Best Rewards Credit Cards for Thanksgiving Shopping

Posted: November 8, 2018

Thanksgiving is coming, and whether you are hosting a meal or coming as a guest, your spendings are going to accumulate faster than you can notice. A holiday feast is a costly matter – each year Americans spend around $50 on a Thanksgiving ... Continue reading
The Best Credit Card for Earning Cash: Discover it® Cash Back

The Best Credit Card for Earning Cash: Discover it® Cash Back

Posted: November 2, 2018

You’ll have hundreds of dollars in your pocket in no time because you’ll earn money back on every purchase you make with this card. There are no restrictions on the amount of cash back you can get, and Discover even matches every penny you ... Continue reading
Top 5 Cards for Travel from Our Partners: Autumn 2018 – Expert’s Choice

Top 5 Cards for Travel from Our Partners: Autumn 2018 – Expert’s Choice

Posted: October 10, 2018

Nights are drawing out, the wind is colder every day and you already feel the lightest breath of winter on your face - autumn is here. Holidays are over, kids are back to school and all you are left with are hefty holiday bills that you ... Continue reading
You've successfully subscribed!

Please specify the following:All these fields are optional

Your Credit History
Themes you are interested in:

By providing this information you help us make our news letters more useful and informative. Thank you!