Are you trying to pay off your credit card debts as soon as possible? We’ve got six clever ways to do so, from classic personal finance strategies to creative tactics that take advantage of the way credit card interest is calculated.
1. Pay your credit card bills early.
Since credit card interest is calculated based on your account’s average daily balance, making a payment before the due date will reduce your balance going forward, and cut your interest costs.1 Just be careful to note that if you make a payment before your statement cycle closes, it will typically count towards the previous statement cycle, and you will still be responsible for making at least the minimum payment before the statement’s due date.
2. Pay often.
While most people only make one payment to each of their accounts each month, there is no reason why you can’t make multiple payments. For example, if you receive your paycheck twice a month, you can save on interest charges by making a payment each time you are paid, rather than after receiving both monthly paychecks. This will save you interest charges by reducing your balance for two weeks, rather than waiting until your second paycheck before making a payment. In fact, you can make additional payments throughout the month as you receive funds from other sources.
3. Ask for a lower rate.
One of the easiest ways to get a lower interest rate on your credit card accounts is to simply ask for it. You can contact your card issuer and request that your credit be reviewed to see if you qualify for a lower rate. During that conversation, you can also emphasize the length of your relationship with the institution, your use of their products and your on-time payment history. The card issuer may even offer you the option of transferring your balance to a different card with a lower interest rate.
4. Consider a 0% APR balance transfer offer.
There are many credit cards that offer new applicants 0% APR promotional financing on balance transfers. With these cards, you can transfer your existing balance to the new card and continue paying it off without incurring interest charges. These promotional financing offers must be valid for at least six months, and some current offers can last as long as 18 months. The biggest drawback is that nearly all of these offers requires the payment of a 3% balance transfer fee, yet the interest saved can far outweigh the costs.2
Pay Off Debt Faster with a Balance Transfer.
5. Minimize your expenses.
Having credit card debt is the perfect opportunity to control your spending and practice a little frugality. By spending less now, you can pay off our debt sooner, and save money on interest charges in the long run.
6. Maximize your income.
When you are paying off credit card debt, it’s also a great time to try to make a little extra money. If you can pay off your debt sooner by taking on a few extra hours at work, or perhaps a small gig on the side, which will allow you to save money on interest charges. You can even think of the interest charges that you save as a small bonus on the hours you work.