Ask About A Debt Management Plan
A debt management plan helps consolidate your credit card debt and may result in lower interest rates and waived late fees. Getting on a debt management plan requires that you work with a nonprofit credit counseling agency ideally, one that’s accredited by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling. A debt management plan can help you become debt-free in less than five years. However, you’ll need to stop using your credit cards or even close their accounts. Also, it’s possible that not all your creditors will agree to participate.
Issuers of personal/debt consolidation loans consider your creditworthiness and payment history when considering your application, so it’s best that you review those in advance.
How To Check The Status Of Your Amex Balance Transfer
If youre curious where your balance transfer stands, you can also check on this through your online account page with Amex. All you have to do is log in at AmericanExpress.com, then go to Account Services and select the option that says, Payment & Credit Options.
Once there, you can click on the link that says, Check Balance Transfer Status.
How Long Will The Balance Transfer Take
In general, balance transfers take five to seven days, but in some cases a transfer can take up to six weeks. Keep in mind that the transfer wont be initiated until after youve had the cardmember agreement for at least 10 days. Since the transfer doesnt happen immediately, its important to stay current on your credit card payments with the bank you are transferring the balance from until you receive confirmation that the transfer has been posted. This prevents you from being charged late fees and dinging your credit score.
The information related to the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card, The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express, and the American Express Cash Magnet® Card has been independently collected by LendingTree and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuers of these cards prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.
Recommended Reading: Who Accepts Bridgestone Credit Card
Pros And Cons Of Balance Transfers And Personal Loans
Both balance transfers and personal loans have advantages and disadvantages. A personal loan can often offer higher loan amounts and a longer repayment term than a balance transfer, for example. However, youll have to pay interest on a personal loan, whereas some balance transfer credit cards waive interest charges for a year or longer.
How Will This Impact My Credit
Opening a new credit card or loan account can impact your credit in a few different ways. At first, your credit score could drop a few points when the creditor runs a hard inquiry to check your credit. As long as you make on-time payments on your debts, however, your score should bounce back.
Opening a new credit card can also impact your credit utilization ratiothe amount of credit youre using compared to the amount available to you. To protect your credit score, keep your credit utilization under 30%.
Having a mix of credit can also improve your score. Credit cards represent revolving debt, for instance, while a personal loan is a type of installment debt. If you dont hold any installment debt, borrowing a personal loan could diversify your credit mix.
Perhaps the most important influence on your credit score, however, is how you manage your balance transfer card or personal loan. Making on-time payments and paying down your debt can improve your credit.
Read Also: Can Green Card Holder File For Fiance Visa
Why You Can Trust Bankrate
At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict editorial integrity, this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here’s an explanation for how we make money. The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the authors alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.
Analyze Your Top Picks
Compare cards by calculating how much youll pay monthly to clear the transferred balance before the promotional APR period ends:
Take the total amount of debt youll transfer to the card and add the balance transfer fee to it. This is the total balance transfer cost.
Example: $5,000 debt + $150 fee = $5,150 balance transfer total cost
Next, divide the total balance transfer cost by the 0% balance transfer APR offer length in months. That gives you the minimum amount youll need to pay each month to eliminate the transferred debt interest-free.
Example: $5,150 / 12 months = $429.16 minimum monthly payment
If the minimum monthly payment is too high for your budget, find another card with a longer introductory APR offer to spread out and reduce the monthly payment.
If you dont pay down the balance on time, youll pay the standard balance transfer interest rate on the remaining balance.
You May Like: How To Request Lower Interest Rate On Credit Card
How To Make The Most Of A Balance Transfer Credit Card
If you’re transferring a balance to a card to save money on interest, it pays to use it wisely. Here are some tips for making the most of a balance transfer card.
- Read the fine print on terms and fees. If you’re paying a fee to transfer a balance, you want to know that upfront so you can factor it into your repayment plans. The same goes for an annual fee the card may charge, as well as the terms of the 0% APR promotional offer.
- Calculate your payment budget. Making minimum payments alone may not be enough to clear a balance before a promotional period ends. Calculate how much you need each month to pay off a balance transfer in the introductory term allowed for your card.
- Make note of when your card’s introductory rate period ends and when the regular variable APR would apply to any remaining balance. Also, note processing times for payments and when they’re credited to your account. If you’re making the final payment on your balance the day before the promotional period ends, you want to make sure it gets in under the cutoff time for processing.
- Pay on or before the due date each month. Paying late or missing a payment on a balance transfer card could cause you to lose your 0% introductory APR deal. In a worst-case scenario, your card issuer could apply a penalty rate, which is often much steeper than the regular variable APR.
How Much Does It Cost To Do A Balance Transfer With American Express
Balance transfer credit cards typically charge a balance transfer fee that is equal to 3 percent or 5 percent of the balance you transfer. This means that, for every $5,000 in debt you transfer from another card, youll be asked to pay $150 to $250 in upfront balance transfer fees.
Also, keep in mind that youll have to pay the standard variable APR on any remaining balances after your cards introductory APR period ends.
Also Check: How To Receive Credit Card Payments On Paypal
Review Balance Transfer Card Offer Terms
Many balance transfer card offers are available, so focus on cards that fit your financial needs. Pay close attention to the following terms:
Length of zero-interest deal: Most range between 12 and 21 months, but watch for promotions spanning longer periods, which give extra time for transferred debt reduction and cutting the amount you need to pay monthly.
Balance transfer fee: Some cards dont charge a balance transfer fee, but most cards do, typically 3% to 5% of the transfer amount or $5 to $10, whichever is greater. Seek low-fee cards, and figure out each card’s fees.
To calculate potential balance transfer fees, follow this formula: Total amount you want to transfer x balance transfer fee amount = total fee. For example: $2,500 transfer x 0.03 = $75 fee.
Transfer deadlines: To qualify for the introductory APR deal or discount on any transfer fee, a quick balance transfer may be necessary. To enjoy the entire interest-free period, initiate balance transfers right away.
: If the card you want requires excellent credit but your credit score falls in the fair range, your application probably wont be approved. If approved, your credit limit may be too low for your balance transfer goals. Focus on cards compatible with your credit profile.
Follow Up On Your Balance Transfer Request
Once you have requested a balance transfer, youll want to double-check that everything went according to plan. In addition to confirming that the proper amounts were transferred successfully, youll want to keep an eye on your old accounts so you can pay off any interest that may have accrued between the date you requested your balance transfer and when the transaction was completed.
Recommended Reading: Can I Use My Amex Card Before It Arrives
What Is The Best Balance Transfer Credit Card
ValuePenguin’s pick for the best balance transfer card is Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card.
While the best balance transfer credit card will depend on what you plan to use your card for, Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card comes with a long intro APR offer and $0 annual fee. For consumers looking for a great balance transfer card, Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card can be a great option.
Can You Transfer A Balance From An Overseas Card To An American Express Credit Card
American Express have a global card transfer service you can use to apply for a new card in Australia if youve moved from overseas. If American Express has an introductory balance transfer offer available, it wont be possible to transfer a balance from an overseas card to an American Express credit card.
Also Check: How To Accept Credit Card Payments On My Phone
Things To Know Before You Do A Balance Transfer
Before initiating the balance transfer, make sure you have the account number and balance of the card with the existing debt. Youll also need the account number for your American Express account. Once you have these, you can complete your balance transfer by calling the number on the back of your credit card or by logging into your Amex account online.
There are several requirements when doing a balance transfer with Amex:
- Balance transfers must be made within 60 days from the date of account opening. Amexs terms and conditions state that only transfers during that time will be approved.
- Transferred balances must be a minimum of $100. This is especially important to keep in mind if youre planning to consolidate debt from multiple credit cards.
- Transfers cant exceed the lesser of $5,000 or 75% of your American Express credit card limit. If you are approved for an American Express card, youll be assigned a credit limit. A simple way to find out your balance transfer limit is to multiply your credit limit by 0.75. Then, if the number is less than $5,000, thats the maximum you can transfer. If its greater than $5,000, the max you can transfer is $5,000. For example, with a credit limit of $4,000, you can transfer no more than $3,000 to the card.
How To Do A Balance Transfer With American Express
Do your Amex balance transfer online
When you apply, youll get an opportunity to do a balance transfer by entering information about your existing credit card and how much debt you want to transfer. If you choose not to proceed with that, you can do a balance transfer later by following the steps below.
Do your Amex balance transfer by phone
Recommended Reading: Is The Delta Amex Worth It
American Express Credit Cards With The Best Offers
Whether youre looking for consumer or business credit cards from Amex, you have several options. Comparing the offers that come with different cards is important because most are designed to meet specific requirements. Since Amex does not currently allow balance transfers, finding zero interest credit cards with no transfer fees is not possible. However, you can choose from a few 0% APR cards with no annual fees.
- American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card
An excellent no-annual-fee cash back card with 0% intro APR on purchases
- 13% Cash Back*Rewards Rate
- 2xRewards Rate on Gas
- 1xRewards Rate on Groceries
WHY WE GEEK OUT?
We love the American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card because it charges no annual fee and lets you earn high cash back across specific categories. You earn 3% cash back on up to $6,000 in purchases at U.S. grocery stores each year, 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
A welcome offer lets you earn $250 back in the form of a statement credit by spending $2,000 on purchases within the first six months. This card also comes with an introductory 0% APR on purchases for the first 15 months.
Using this card outside of the U.S. might not a good idea because it charges foreign transaction fees.
PROS & CONS
- Intro 0% APR on purchases for 15 months from account opening
- Spending-based welcome bonus of $200 back
- Up to 3% cash back
Select A Transfer Method
Once you have decided on a card, you need to determine how to do the balance transfer. Depending on the card issuer, you may have the following options.
Phone: Call the cards customer service line to speak with a representative and request a balance transfer. They should be able to walk you through the process.
Online: Many cards make it easy for existing cardholders to request balance transfers online. If you dont see this option in your account dashboard, try searching your cards help section to see if its an option.
Balance transfer check: If you prefer an old-school method of transferring a balance, you could use a balance transfer check. Some companies send them to cardholders automatically while others only mail them on request. You complete a balance transfer check the same as any other paper check and then mail it as a payment to the card you want to pay off. Just be sure to read the fine print to ensure the check wont actually be processed as a cash advance at a higher APR.
Apply for a card: If none of your existing cards have a good balance transfer offer, you could open a new account. Some of the best balance transfer cards have intro 0% APR for the first year or more. When you open a new card online, it should prompt you to enter balance transfer information.
If you arent sure which method is right for you, heres a closer look at the pros and cons of each:
May not be available for all cards
Greater flexibility to pay off balances from different creditors
Don’t Miss: Can I Have More Than 1 Credit Card
How To Do A Balance Transfer
How Much Money Can You Save With A Balance Transfer
The amount a balance transfer can save you depends on the new interest rate you receive and the length of your 0% APR promotional period.
For example, say you have a $3,000 balance on a credit card with an APR of 16.3%. Your minimum monthly payment would be $90, and it would take you 152 months to pay off the balance by paying only the minimum. You’d pay $2,239 in interest charges in that time.
Now imagine you transfer the $3,000 balance to a card that carries a 0% intro APR, a 3% balance transfer fee and an 18-month interest-free period. If you pay off your balance in 18 months, you’d pay $0 in interest, and your payment would increase to about $167 per month. You’d also pay a $90 balance transfer fee.
If you kept your monthly payment the same$90 rather than $167you’d take 36 months to pay off your debt. For 18 of those months, you’d pay interest. If your interest rate after the promotional period increased to 14.99%, you’d pay about $252 in interest in total. That’s still nearly $2,000 in interest savings compared with not using a balance transfer card at all.
Don’t Miss: What Is Pos Credit Card
How Does A Balance Transfer Work
A balance transfer involves paying off one credit card with another. After providing your card issuer with the card issuer, account number, and balance for the balance you want to transfer, your card issuer handles transferring the balance.
Balances you’ve transferred are separated from other types of credit card balances on your billing statement and may be charged a different interest rate.Credit card issuers commonly offer a limited-time promotional interest rate for new cardholders who transfer a balance from another credit card. Any promotional rate on a balance transfer must last at least six months, unless you fall behind on payments by 60 days or more.
Here’s how a balance transfer works:
Expanding on the example from above, lets say you currently have a $5,000 credit card balance with an 18% APR. Monthly interest is making it hard to pay down your balance, so you decide to open a credit card with a 0% APR on balance transfers for 12 months. You can provide your new credit card issuer with the balance transfer details during the application process or after you’ve been approved.
Once the balance transfer is complete, any balance transfer fees will apply, and you’ll start making payments to the new credit card issuer.