How Can I Lower My Credit Card Interest Rate?

November 2, 2007 Comments Off
How Can I Lower My Credit Card Interest Rate?

Many consumers are riddled with credit card debt thanks in part to APR that is through the roof, making it very difficult to pay down debts and get back in the black.

So you may ask yourself, “How can I lower my credit card interest rate?”

Credit card issuers aren’t in the business of losing customers, and if they feel the threat of you leaving them, they’ll do whatever they can to keep you “on-board.”

It’s clear they want our business, as evidenced by the number of offers received in our mailboxes on what feels like a daily basis, and the bountiful array of credit card advertisements found on nearly every website on the Internet.

And though reducing your interest rate may cut into their profits, losing you (and your debt) altogether will have a far greater impact on their revenue.

Call Your Card Issuer and Ask for a Lower Interest Rate

That said, if you’re a good customer with a solid payment history and high credit card APR, call your card issuer immediately to ask about a rate reduction.

It’s a very standard practice, and one that pretty much any customer service representative can handle without asking a supervisor.

When you do call, make sure you’re assertive and clear about what you want. Ask for more than you think they’ll offer, and you should end up with a solid rate reduction.

Tell them that you have other, better offers that you’re actively considering if you’re forced to continue paying the APR they currently offer.

The second they hear that you’re considering moving your debt elsewhere, they will likely oblige to your demands, and lower your rate.

The changes should be instant, and you’ll start saving money immediately. After all, why pay 30% APR when it could be as low as 10-15%.

I’ve even heard that some customers have had their 0% APR introductory rate extended simply by asking for an extension.

The annual savings could be in the hundreds or even more if you carry a significant amount of debt, and should allow you to pay off your debt a lot faster and more economically.

Either way, don’t be afraid to ask for a discount, it’s your right as a customer and it only takes a few minutes.

Try a Credit Card Balance Transfer

There’s another alternative if you want to save even more money.

If possible, consider executing a credit card balance transfer to move all your existing debt to a 0% APR credit card.

Doing so will help you avoid finance charges and interest altogether for a specified period of time, typically 12 months or longer.

During that time you can set up a plan of attack to pay off your credit card debt.

Just know that the interest rate will jump to your purchase rate at the end of the introductory period, so tackle the debt while it’s still interest-free!

Oh, and one other cautionary mention.  If you go with the first option above, make sure your credit card issuer lowers your APR for your existing balance AND future purchases.

If they fail to do so, you’ll just be paying the lower APR balances off first thanks to negative payment hierarchy, assuming you continue to make purchases with the same credit card.

Read more: How to transfer credit card balances with bad credit.

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