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How To Avoid Any And All APRs Even Without A 0 Interest Rate Credit Card

by / 0 Comments / May 02, 2015

The 0 interest rate credit card is not always easy to get. If you can’t get one then paying off your credit card balance in full every month makes perfect sense. If you do, it doesn’t matter whether you have a card with a high or low APR rate because you’re not going to pay any interest. That also means your payment must be received and applied before the end of your grace period. Mail your payment at least five days before the due date to make sure it gets their on time.

I had a problem with getting my payment to the credit card company on time over our last national holiday. I mailed it in plenty of the time, but somewhere along the line – either the post office or the credit card company – took longer than normal to get my payment into the right hands. As a result, I was assessed a $25 late fee, which I’m in the process of disputing. Because I have no concrete proof as to who was at fault, I’m banking on the credit card company taking into consideration my loyalty over the past 20 years. We will see.

Changing Your Financial Ways without a 0 Interest Rate Credit Card

Snapping your monthly balance back to zero each month sounds basic and easy, but everyone knows it’s not always that simple. On the reverse it is truly effortless to spend more than you can pay for, which creates a balance on your credit card that just continues to climb.

Doing the following should keep your credit card balances in line even without a 0 interest rate credit card:

  • Charge only what you know you can absolutely pay off each month. That means keep in mind your financial limits.
  • Avoid taking cash advances or writing “convenience” credit card checks. Remember, the dreaded credit card balance transfer fee.
  • Carry only one or two credit cards on your person so you’re not tempted to exhaust your full credit limit.
  • Make a habit of reading the fine print and disclosures sent from your credit card company.
  • Create a budget each month and include what you plan to pay on your credit cards.
  • Try not to charge anymore until you’ve paid off your current credit card debt.
  • Pay more than the minimum payment on the account balances you have.

Only Paying the Minimum

It can be very tempting to pay the minimum payment required because you want to spend your extra money on a new dress, tickets to a concert, or a weekend trip. Don’t let temptation sway you, especially if you do not have the luxury of a 0 interest rate credit card.

I actually know this first hand. That credit card I’m working very hard at paying off tells me now that if I only make the minimum payment it will take me 32 years to pay it off and I’ll pay more than twice as much as the balance because of the interest. Honestly, I don’t want to pay for those clothes that will be out of style in three years after I’m retired.

Tip: Handing over a credit card to pay for a purchase is very easy and almost seems like you’re not spending money at all. To etch in your brain that you’ve actually spent dollars, try writing down everything you charge in a little notebook. Note how fast those charges add up.

About the Author

Heather Larson writes about personal finance from her office in Tacoma, Washington. Her expertise in low-interest credit cards was developed out of necessity – as a writer with an erratic income. She has written about credit cards for Creditcards.com, Bankrate.com, Cardratings.com, and Quinstreet.com

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