Credit cards are one of the most variable and competitive consumer finance products. Offers are constantly changing to meet cardholder needs and to stand out among the competition. When your comparing credit cards then finding the lowest credit card rate will be of high importance.
There is no signle best credit card rate. If there were, you would not have all this variety from 0% or very low rates to 18% or higher rates. It really depends on your spending patterns and lifestyle, and you will have to compare credit cards to determine which suits you best.
It is very important to pick the card appropriate for your needs. This will depend on your spending and paying behaviour: if you prefer to pay off all your balance on every monthly statement, if you leave a balance on each statement, if you accumulate a large balance, or if you are a big spender.
Pay your balance off in full each month? You might be the type who doesn’t like to carry debt. Upon receiving your monthly statement, you pay the off the full balance owing. In this case, the interest rate will not be of much consequence to you, since interest is calculated only on debt that you carry into subsequent periods. The best credit card for you would be one that does not charge any annual fee and has a longer interest-free period.
Make sure you always pay your card balance off in full. If you don’t, the high interest rates associated with no-annual-fee and long interest-free-period credit cards will kick in.
Those who carry debt beyond the grace period You may pay only a portion of the amount billed in your monthly statement and carry debt over to the next cycle. It is also worth looking at low interest credit cards which also come with low annual fees.
If you regularly carry debt on your credit card, each percentage point of interest will matter a lot. If your average debt balance is $2000, every 1 per cent difference in interest rate means $20 saved. A high annual fee can be equivalent to 1 per cent or more of interest, depending on your average debt, so you want it as low as possible. There are many low interest credit cards on offer, so check them out and be sure to compare credit cards, feature for feature.
Those with large outstanding balances You may have a substantial outstanding balance and having difficulty paying it off. You may get a lot of help from low interest credit cards specially designed for balance transfers.
These low interest credit cards allow you to transfer balances to a new card at very low or even zero interest rate. The low-rate period may last several months, which gives you a breathing spell to raise funds to pay off the debt. To really maximise the benefits of these low interest credit cards, you should work hard to pay off the entire debt within the low-interest period.
Those who spend a lot and pay off in full You may be among the lucky ones who make a lot of purchases with their card and are able to pay off their balance in full every month. You should be more interested to compare credit cards offering some form of rewards scheme. The important aspects to examine are the rewards points given per dollar spent, the annual fee, and the length of the interest-free period.
These types of cards tend to come with higher interest rates and annual card fees. But since you don’t carry debt, the interest is less significant to you. Check if the rewards scheme will offer value to you commensurate to the annual fee.
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