Switching to a 0% credit card

<p>Does anyone have experience with switching credit cards to obtain a 0% interest? We have had the same card for over 30 years and always paid the balance in full each month. Unfortunately, unemployment caused us to veer from this plan. I'd like to get back on track now and get things paid off. </p>

<p>What should I look for? From the letters I've been reading this morning, it seems that most banks charge 3-4% to transfer a balance. Is there anything else I should be aware of? Should I cancel the old card?</p>

<p>Thanks for your help. This is new territory for me.</p>

<p>Some banks cap the balance transfer fee at a maximum of $75.00. If you have a large balance to transfer that can obviously save you money. Most, if not all, of the cards will punish you for paying late by immediately rasing the interest rate on your remaining balance. You must be very careful to abide by all of the rules in the fine print!</p>

<p>I've had very good experiences with 0% cards from Chase. My husband and i got a new 0% credit card from Chase every year that our D was in college. That's how we got her college tuition paid. We put her tuition on the 0% card each semester, then spent the next several months paying it off. For us, it was a much better deal than taking out PLUS loans. We were loaned money for free each year! Ya can't beat that!</p>

<p>0% are a little harder to come by now with the credit law changes. Also the fees to transfer have gone up to as much as 4-5%(Discover) and the time period for the pay off has come down (as little as 4-6 months). If you find one with a 3% transfer fee and 12 months you would be fine. </p>

<p>Do not cancel your old card. Besides being better for your credit score to leave it there, you may still need it. I am not sure if they have changed it or not, but it used to be that if you had the 0% and then charged anything else, they charged the high interest rate on the new charges and paid off the 0% first with your payments. You want your old card for any new charges you have to make. </p>

<p>I used 0% cards to pay down debt we had when I was unemployed. I got pretty good at calculating the return and costs of each card. Now they charge too much transfer fee for too little time so all of our remaining debt is on the second mortgage line of credit. The interest rate is low there right now. Remember when you are comparing, treat the transfer like interest.</p>

<p>Thanks for the help. I can't stand having a balance on our credit card, but I keep trying to remember what a good thing it was that we always lived within our means and didn't have a balance before unemployment struck. I feel such a burden owing this money and want to get out from under as soon as possible. It seems as though it will take forever, with so much going to interest each month.</p>

<p>If anyone else has any suggestions, please throw them my way. It is appreciated!</p>

<p>I am part of an online community for people trying to get out of debt, and MANY of the members are dealing with credit card debt. Here's the link in case you want to browse:</p>

<p><a href="http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-mlsupport%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-mlsupport&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>A lot of the members there are very knowledgeable and helpful in dealing with getting credit cards back under control.</p>