Comeback of 0% Introductory Rate Credit Cards Can Help Chicago Consumers
Being a responsible credit user might do more than just boost your credit score. According to Smart Money, it can help free you from paying interest.
Back before the recession, it was common for people with decent credit scores to receive pre-approvals for the much sought-after 0% APR credit cards - in other words, cards that didn't charge interest on new purchases or balance transfers for a certain period of time. Those offers all but evaporated for everyone, good credit or not, in the past few years. But now it appears they're back - and you might be able to take advantage by cleaning up your credit, say Chicago bankruptcy attorneys.
Credit card offers for low or no introductory rates are up nearly 20% from last year, according to Smart Money. Not only that, but the introductory periods - or the amount of time before that 0% rate expires and is replaced with actual interest - last longer, usually about 21 months instead of the 12 months that were once typical. Of course, whether or not a no-interest card is good for your finances depends on your debt situation.
If you carry a small balance that you know you can pay off - or, better yet, that you do pay off each month or so - then a 0% interest rate provides a temporary convenience, buying time between when you make a purchase and when you pay for it. If you're really on top of things, you can use the money you're saving on interest to start paying off high-interest debts. However, if you rack up so much debt that you can't pay it off before the introductory period ends, you're better off not opening another credit card at all.
Remember, when that 0% APR expires you'll be stuck with yet another credit card, probably with a rate of 15% or more. Deals come and they go, but the best way to save money and get a handle on your finances is to reduce debt. And if that debt is too overwhelming to manage alone? Get help. Our Chicago bankruptcy attorneys can determine whether a bankruptcy plan can lower or eliminate your past debts when you try a free personal debt analysis. Because if you're not carrying debt, every credit card comes with zero interest.