Using 0% Apr Credit Card to Become Debt-free

Written by admin on April 29th, 2011

rmally, when you’re looking to consolidate credit card debt you have the following options: get a debt consolidation loan -or- apply for a home equity loan. But if your credit card debt is still manageable, you may want to consider consolidating your balances with 0% APR credit cards instead. Using a 0% APR credit card will help you pay off your balances and spend less on interest charges!

To use a 0% APR credit card to pay off your debts, follow these steps:

1. Transfer your existing credit card balances to a new 0% APR credit card.

2. Continue to pay down your balance as usual. But instead of paying only the minimum each month, also pay the amount of interest you would have paid with your other card. This will reduce your debt even quicker!

3. Watch your introductory period. When it’s about to expire, shop around for a new 0% APR credit card and transfer your balances again.

4. Continue this cycle until you become debt free.

0% APR Credit Cards vs. Debt Consolidation:

So you’re considering a debt consolidation loan instead of a 0% APR credit card. Let’s see how much you could save and how much quicker you could pay off your debt using the method shown above. Here’s an example:

Assume you have an existing credit card debt of ,000. You would pay 0 per month until the debt is paid off. Your debt consolidation loan was approved at 7% (much lower than your original 12% credit card!)

1st Year Principal ,014

2nd Year Principal ,160

3rd Year Principal ,316

4th Year Principal ,483

5th Year Principal ,662

6th Year Principal ,855

Total Interest Paid ,516
Total Amount Paid: ,516

TOTAL Number of Payments: 70

Now let’s compare paying off this same debt using 0% APR cards

1st Year Principal ,600

2nd Year Principal ,600

3rd Year Principal ,600

4th Year Principal ,600

5th Year Principal $ 600

Total Interest Paid $ 0
Total Amount Paid: ,000

TOTAL Number of Payments: 50

You would save 16 over a six year period. Plus, you will be done with your payments 15 months sooner. Imagine being debt free over a year before you planned!

Words of Advice:

Although using 0% credit cards to pay down your debt is a great option, try not to switch credit cards too frequently. Doing so can negatively impact your credit report. Shop around for 0% APR credit cards that have the longest introductory periods and the lowest APRs (after the intro period) to buy you a little breathing room. Also, don’t fall into the trap of spending again on your old credit cards. Either close them or deactivate them so that you don’t get yourself into further debt. And don not overspend with your new card either (even if it is 0%)! Finally, make sure you apply the money you saved on interest to your new payments to help eliminate your debt faster.

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