If you’re a credit card user, there’s a chance that your credit card’s annual percentage rate (APR) is too high for your specific situation. This article will explore how you can work with your credit card company to reduce this rate.
With a high-rate credit card, it’s worth investigating possible methods of reducing your APR. Not only does it help you on your journey to being debt-free, but no matter also how much you pay off each month, the monthly interest paid can add up over time.
Rates are calculated at the beginning of every month. They are typically based on your balance at the end of the previous month. So, if you are paying down your credit card balance before this date, there is no benefit to doing so as it won’t affect your rate until after this date. However, if you’re able to reduce your balance below the minimum payment threshold at this point, then that may be worth doing, as it will reduce or eliminate any interest charged for that month.
How to get a lower credit card APR?
Many people are concerned that asking the credit card issuer to lower their APR will hurt their credit rating if the request is denied.
There are generally two kinds of situations in which you could be charged higher than average interest rates and thus likely be eligible for rate reductions:
- If you have missed payments in the past or currently have a high balance relative to your income, requesting an interest rate reduction may be an option. The first thing to do is call your credit card company and ask for their “retention” team. These are the people responsible for keeping you as a customer.
- If your credit is generally good, but you are just looking to get a lower APR than what is offered, calling an executive at your bank is a good option. Executives typically have the authority to make exceptions to policy and can provide the best results. You can find their number by doing a Google or Facebook search for “customer retention” or “credit card executive.”
How should you negotiate a lower APR?
There are several ways to attempt to negotiate for a lower APR without affecting your credit score. Perhaps the best way to negotiate a lower interest rate is to do competitor research. It would help if you did competitive research beforehand to know the average rates for your situation. If you know an average speed, it can prove helpful in your negotiations.
You should also be armed with the knowledge of what other banks are offering for their mortgage or refinancing loans. You can do this by calling around and talking with different banks or signing up with financial institutions online that are willing to match your current bank’s rate.
Before you go out there and start shopping around, there are a few things you should consider first:
Will you be able to get another loan in the future?
Before you go out and shop for a better bank, think about whether you can get another loan in the future. If your credit score is low, you may think it will look worse in the future if you change banks. If that’s the case, then you should stay with your current bank.
However, if your credit score is decent enough to get loans without too much hassle still, then it might be worth it to shop around for different rates. If you can save thousands of dollars on interest payments, it could be worth looking into applying for new loans after making this switch.
Do you have a bad credit score? Are you interested in lowering it?
If you have a bad credit score, then you’ll need to be more careful. If your credit history is bad, it can make it harder to get loans if you switch banks. You may have to apply for more loans first and pay them off more quickly after they’re approved. This is because banks will want to see that you’re paying back your debts. However, if your credit history is decent enough, it may be worth the risk of jumping ship and trying out a new bank.
Don’t forget that even if you move on from your current bank, it’s still a good idea to maintain a good relationship with them. They’ll be more likely to work with you and offer you another loan in the future if they know how well you’ve handled your credit in the past.
Should you ask for a lower rate?
Once you’ve decided that switching banks may be beneficial, then it’s time to consider asking them for a lower interest rate. When asked why you want a lower rate, it may be helpful to tell them about the current competition in the marketplace.
This can show them that another bank is willing to lend money at a lower rate than they are. However, keep in mind that if they lower their rates to match what other banks are offering, other banks will come and undercut those rates.
You should also think about the type of relationship you have with your current bank. If you’ve been a loyal customer for a while, then they may be more willing to work with you on the interest rate.
What should you do if your credit card APR negotiation fails?
If your negotiation attempts fail, this doesn’t necessarily mean you should give up on getting a lower APR. Working with a credit card company to get a lower interest rate indicates your financial responsibility. So, if you do get denied, don’t be discouraged! There are other avenues available to you.
Your bank balance is typically a valuable asset that a credit card company can use to attract new customers. By expressing your desire to be a valued customer, you’re more likely to get a favourable response. If you have a large credit card balance, these techniques could help. If your card company refuses to lower its interest rate, there’s a good chance that you can always switch to another card with the same or better terms.