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5 Best First Credit Cards to Build History #038; Credit Score in 2016

Last Updated July 13, 2016

Slate card credit scoreThere is no denying the convenience offered by credit cards.

Unfortunately, it#8217;s not always easy to get your very first credit card especially if you have bad or no credit history.

And that#8217;s the dilemma for a lot of people, including myself when I was trying to get my first credit card. If you can#8217;t get a credit card because you have no credit history, then how are you going to build that history?

Sure, you can go get a loan to#8230;

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Wait a minute#8230; You can#8217;t even get a loan if you have bad or no credit history.

I struggled with that issue myself. I came to this country as a refugee when I was 20 years old. So, I had no credit history, nor did I have anyone to co-sign on a car or a loan for me to build that history.

Thankfully, some credit card providers have started to offer secured and non-secured cards for first timers.

I actually used a secured credit card from then Orchard Bank (It is now Capital One) to slowly build my history and score.

Here is my list of some of the top most beneficial and user friendly cards for those looking to get their first credit card:

Best First Credit Cards for Bad (OK, Fair..) or No Credit

1. Secured MasterCard From Capital One

Slate card credit score

If you have no credit and are looking for a card to help you build it, this is the one.

This card was my first card (when it was under Orchard Bank) and I still use it till this day, although now it has moved from secured to unsecured.

They usually start people from $200 or so, but the best thing is that after 12 months of paying bills on time, they will give you an unsecured card with $300 limit. Pay your bills on time for another 6-7 months and your credit limit goes up to $500. Every 6 months or so your credit line goes up if you pay on time.

  • It has a 22.9% variable purchase APR.
  • The annual fee is $29.

Slate card credit score

You get $0 introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days. After the first 60 days, the fee for balance transfers is 3% of the amount transferred with a minimum of $5.

You get a card with 0% Introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. Once the introductory period ends, a variable APR of 12.99%, 17.99%, or 22.99% applies.

There is no annual fee.

Slate card credit score

This card remains friendly to consumers with modest or no credit. You get five percent cash back on buying gas, groceries and money spent in restaurants.

The APR for purchases made during the initial fifteen months is zero. The same is true for balance transfers.

Best First Credit Cards for College Students

Slate card credit score

To me, this is the best first credit card for students. First time users will find it attractive to get this card as it charges no APR (the annual rate of interest charged by the company) for the initial nine months.

However, getting this card could be difficult for those with no exposure to credit.

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The rewards you can expect from this company include:

  • 5% cash back on things like gas, groceries and restaurants, which most students love.
  • For rest of your purchases you get 1% cash back.
  • There’s no annual fee to be paid.

5. Capital One Journey Student Rewards Card

Slate card credit score

Those with some degree of credit history can qualify for this card that charges 19.8 % APR.

You are also rewarded if you pay your bills in time: a bonus of 25% on the cash back earned during that month.

Again, there’s no fee charged annually.

6. Citi Forward for College Students Card

Slate card credit score

I know the title says 5, but this one is such a great card that I just had to include it in this list.

This card presents great rewards. You are rewarded for every dollar you spend at restaurants including fast food joints, music, movies, and books too.

They don’t charge annual fee and the APR for purchases made during the initial seven months is zero.

For getting membership of unsecured cards, you are not required to offer collateral by way of keeping funds in your savings bank account. But you are expected to prove your credit worthiness for qualifying for such cards.

If you are new to credit or can’t qualify for unsecured credit card, your only option will be a secured card, needing you to deposit funds in your saving account.

When the rate of interest charged is low, you’ll need to pay less amount of interest if the balance amount from any previous statement gets carried over to the next.

It’s quite a normal practice for card companies to charge low for the initial few months of membership but you need to look at the rate of interest that the company charges after the introductory period is over.

Of course, you can always avoid paying interest by paying your bills regularly in time.

You’ll find that credit cards come with different benefits and features. The more the rewards and features, the more is the annual fees.

Basic credit cards charge zero to very low fee. Most credit cards would charge for added transactions like balance transfers and cash advances.

It is critical to understand that credit cards do not offer cash for free. In fact, you are simply borrowing money and that needs to be paid back. That is not to deny the conveniences offered by credit card, but if you are unable to pay your dues and keep forwarding your dues, it will surely spoil your credit rating in the long run.

If you take control of your finances and regularly pay within specified time, you can certainly use your very first card to build a great credit score and enjoy the benefits thereof.

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Chase Slate vs. BankAmericard Credit Card#x3a; Which Is the Better Balance-Transfer Card#x3f;

By Nathan Hamilton Published May 17, 2017 Markets

Slate card credit score

Image source: Getty Images

Continue Reading Below

Chase Slate and BankAmericard Credit Card have locked down a spot among some of the most popular balance-transfer credit cards on the market. It's easy to understand why, given their longer-than-average introductory 0% APR offers. This is one reason both cards landed a spot on our lists of the best balance-transfer credit cards and best credit cards of 2017.

But what separates the two powerhouse cards and which may be best? Let's dive in to learn more.

What is a balance-transfer credit card?

First, it's important to understand how indebted cardholders can use balance-transfer cards. Balance-transfer credit cards help cardholders get out of debt faster by including a promotional 0% APR offer, where interest isn't charged on transferred balances for a specified period, typically 12 to 21 billing cycles. Card issuers use this marketing strategy to attract new members, but smart cardholders can rightfully take advantage and avoid interest charges during the promo period.

You simply need to apply for approval for a balance-transfer card and then request transfer balances from a current card that's incurring interest charges. You'll need only basic card details, including the card number from which you're transferring and the amount. The entire process can be completed when applying or after approval.

Continue Reading Below

When a balance-transfer credit card makes sense

Cardholders can save $3,961 when paying off a $10,000 balance with an 18-billing-cycle, 0% promotional APR card, assuming payments of $300 each month and a 20% APR after the promo period, compared with sticking with a high-rate card that charges 20% interest today on the same payment and balance. What's more, balances will be paid off after 36 months on the new card, versus 50 months for the older card.

Paying thousands of dollars for unnecessary interest charges highlights how high-cost debt can wreak havoc on your finances. Blame double-digit interest rates and compounding interest, which is why paying principal balances off faster can have a multiplying effect on interest savings.

With this in mind, let's review Chase Slate and BankAmericard to uncover which may be best.

  • 0% introductory APR offer: Chase Slate not only offers a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers spanning 15 billing cycles, but the card also includes the same promotional APR for new purchases.
  • Balance-transfer fee: This card offers a $0 balance-transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening. After that, the fee is $5 or 5% of the amount transferred, whichever is more.
  • Other perks and details: Chase Slate also includes a balance-transfer credit card essential -- a free FICO score. Cardholders with good credit and better can secure approval, with some cardholders reporting approval with a credit score in the mid-600s and higher.

  • 0% introductory APR offer: BankAmericard offers a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers made in the first 60 days, spanning a longer 18 billing cycles,
  • Balance-transfer fee: The fee is $10, or 3% of the amount transferred, whichever is more.
  • Other perks and details: BankAmericard similarly includes a free FICO score. The main difference here is that better credit may be required. The longer the introductory APR offer, the higher credit score required, which is the case with this card. While Bank of America does approve people with good credit, the credit-qualification requirements may bias higher than Chase Slate.

Which is better, Chase Slate or BankAmericard?

Ultimately, the answer to which card is better is that it depends what you're looking for. We think both are best-in-class balance-transfer credit cards for obvious reasons, and choosing between the two cards may come down to the monthly payment you can afford and credit history. Otherwise the cards are clearly designed by both issuers to be competitors.

Chase Slate has a slight edge when nixing the fee on qualifying balance transfers and paying off balances in 15 billing cycles. Where BankAmericard shines is for cardholders who value a lower monthly payment on the back of three extra billing cycles of interest reprieve, which may also help tackle larger debt balances. The last point could explain why BankAmericard approval biases toward excellent credit. The more debt, the more risk to an issuer and the better credit score required.

5 Simple Tips to Skyrocket Your Credit Score Over 800!

Nathan Hamilton has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


Chase Slate® Review: Balance Transfers With No Intro Fee

Slate card credit score

This post contains references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. The content is not provided by the advertiser and any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any bank, card issuer, airline or hotel chain. Please visit our Advertiser Disclosure to view our partners, and for additional details.

Editor's note: This offer is currently unavailable.

Although the ultimate solution to eliminating credit card interest is paying off your debt, there is an interim strategy that can eliminate interest charges. Promotional financing offers common on many credit cards can allow new cardholders to transfer their balance from an existing card to the new one, which can offer interest-free financing for a period of 6-18 months. The Chase Slate® Card offers 0% intro APR for 15 months on both new purchases and balance transfers. With no balance transfer fees for transfers made within 60 days, and no annual fee, the card can be a powerful tool for eliminating debt.

How the Balance Transfer Works

Once approved for the Slate card, customers have 60 days in which to execute the promotional balance transfer. In effect, you are asking Chase to pay off your old credit card's balance and apply that amount to your new Slate card. Just note that the old balance must be on a card that is not from Chase.

Most cards require an additional 3% balance transfer fee. So this is clearly one of the best balance transfer offer on the market since it offers a 0% intro period, $0 balance transfer fee, and $0 annual fee. In addition, new purchases can also be made interest-free for a period of 15 months. Always keep in mind that you will still have to make a monthly minimum payment, and you will still have to pay off all charges within 15 months in order to avoid interest. (See also: When to Do a Balance Transfer to Pay Off Credit Card Debt)

Credit Score and Credit Dashboard for Free

This card includes access to your FICO® Score, as well as the Chase Slate Credit Dashboard for accessing and viewing helpful credit information. (See also: Credit Cards With Free Credit Scores)

  • $0 Annual Fee
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months for purchases and balance transfers. After that, a variable APR of 15.74%-24.49%
  • $0 Balance Transfer Fee for transfers made within the first 60 days of account opening. After that, 5% or $5, whichever is greater.
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars

No intro fee on balance transfers. With 15 months of 0% intro APR on your existing balance and no balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days, you will not find this offer anywhere else. (See also: Best Credit Cards Without Balance Transfer Fees)

Promotional financing on new purchases. New transactions are also interest-free for 15 months.

No annual fee. Don't add unneccessary expenses when you're trying to pay down debt.

No rewards. There is no sign-up bonus offer, and there are no spending rewards for this card. (See also: Best Cash Back Credit Cards)

Foreign transaction fees. For all transactions processed outside of the United States, this card charges a foreign transaction fee of 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars. (See also: Credit Cards Without Foreign Transaction Fees)

If you have credit card debt, your number one priority should be to pay it off. The Chase Slate card helps you to do that by offering a 0% introductory APR for the first 15 months on both new purchase and balance transfers with no balance transfer fee for transfers made within the first 60 days of opening the account. With these features, the Slate card can be an important part of paying off and eliminating credit card debt.


Credit Scores That Get Balance Transfer Credit Cards

Thursday, June 18, 2015

The editorial content on this page is not provided by any financial institution and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Slate card credit score

Gretchen is a writer, entrepreneur, personal finance nerd, and the founder of Retired by 40.

Slate card credit score

If you have credit card debt at high interest rates, and are struggling to get out from under it, then a balance transfer is a great way to not only slash the interest you are paying, but to reduce the time it will take to pay off your credit card debt.

However, credit card approval for balance transfers largely depends on your credit score. The better your credit, the more attractive the offers you will be approved for.

Don’t despair if you have less than perfect credit #8211; there are many different balance transfer credit cards on the market that approve a range of credit scores. In order to determine the offers available to various credit scores, we went to the Credit Karma database.

Credit Karma uses credit score information from its users in order to provide credit score approval data on credit cards. Typically, there is an average credit score approved and a common low credit score. When you#8217;re reading through the list below, keep in mind that data is based on a selection of Credit Karma users, which does not guarantee you#8217;ll be approved even if you#8217;re in the credit score range.

If you have excellent credit, you can apply for the most competitive balance transfer offers, such as no-fee, longer balance transfer periods, and possibly obtain higher credit limits. Excellent credit is considered 750 or above, but don’t think that you need to have 750 credit to apply to these cards. If your credit score is 720+, you should be applying for offers in the excellent credit category, as you have a very good chance of being approved. These offers include:

Barclaycard Ring™ MasterCard®

  • Offer Details:
    • Promotional offer: 0% introductory APR for 15 months with a $0 introductory balance transfer fee.
    • Average Credit Score Approved: 700

on Barclaycard’s secure website

  • Offer Details:
    • Save with a $0 introductory balance transfer fee and get 0% introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, and $0 annual fee. Plus, receive your Monthly FICO® Score for free.
    • Average Credit Score Approved*: 685

The information related to the Chase Slate credit card has been collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.

Discover it® #8211; 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer

  • Promotional Offer: 0% intro APR for balance transfers for 18 months, with a 3% balance transfer fee
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 707

Slate card credit score

on Discover’s secure website

Santander Sphere Visa Signature

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 24 months
  • Fee: 4%
  • Minimum Credit Score Approved: 680

Slate card credit score

on Santander’s secure website

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 21 months
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 736

Slate card credit score

on Citibank’s secure website

Unify Credit Union Variable Rate Visa

  • Promotional Offer: As low as 5.74% variable
  • Duration: Life of the balance
  • Fee: 0%

Slate card credit score

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 21 months
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 716

Slate card credit score

on Citibank’s secure website

Good or Average Credit #8211; 670-749

670-749 is considered an average or good credit score (depending upon whom you ask), and with it you are a good candidate for most balance transfer offers. However, if your score is 720 or greater, you should apply for balance transfer offers in the excellent category, since those offers are more competitive. Listed below are the balance transfer offers with average credit score approval in the good credit range of 680-749:

Discover it® #8211; 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer

  • Promotional Offer: 0% intro APR for balance transfers for 18 months, with a 3% balance transfer fee
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 707

Slate card credit score

on Discover’s secure website

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 15 months
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 750

Slate card credit score

  • Offer Details:
    • Save with a $0 introductory balance transfer fee and get 0% introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, and $0 annual fee. Plus, receive your Monthly FICO® Score for free.
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 685

The information related to the Chase Slate credit card has been collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 21 months
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 716

Slate card credit score

on Citibank’s secure website

  • Promotional Offer: 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 15.99-24.74%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 672

on Chase’s secure website

It is much more difficult to get a 0% balance transfer if you have below average credit. In many instances, a personal loan is a better option. You should compare the balance transfer options below to a personal loan.

[Disclosure: LendingTree is the parent company of MagnifyMoney.]We recommend using LendingTree to shop for the best personal loan #8211; with a single application, dozens of lenders will compete for your business. And the good news: LendingTree uses a soft credit pull, which means your credit score will not be negatively impacted. Get your personal loan rate #8211; and compare it to the balance transfer offers below.

Don’t shy away from balance transfer cards just because you have below average credit. Your credit score will not qualify you for the best offers, but you can still apply for many offers that approve credit score in the range of 600-679, and that can save you hundreds or thousands of dollars in interest. Below are the cards that approve average credit scores, but you should also check with your local credit union, since they often offer balance transfer credit cards for those with average credit score as well. But do keep in mind, the higher your score the better your odds of getting approved.

Upromise World MasterCard

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Durations: 15 months
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 693
  • Low End Credit Score Approved: 647

Slate card credit score

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 21 months
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 716
  • Low End Credit Score Approved: 645

Slate card credit score

on Citibank’s secure website

Capital One Platinum Prestige Credit Card

  • Promotional Offer: 0%
  • Duration: 15 months (until August 2016)
  • Fee: 3%
  • Average Credit Score Approved: 677
  • Low End Credit Score Approved*: 628

Slate card credit score

Before applying for a balance transfer card with a bad credit score, consider building your credit to above 600 by opening a secured card with your local bank or credit union. We recommend focusing on building your credit score first, so that you can qualify for better balance transfer offers.

Don’t let the fear of being denied stop you from applying for a balance transfer credit card. Instead, choose the most attractive offer from your credit score range that we listed above and arm yourself with the knowledge that your credit score is right where it needs to be in order to be approved.

Once you are approved and receive your balance transfer credit card, complete the balance transfer within the first 30-60 days and then make a plan to pay off your balance by the end of the promotional period. We recommend dividing your total balance by the number of months in the promotional period to determine your monthly payment.

If you cannot pay enough each month pay off your balance by the end of the 0% APR period, pay as much as you can, and then apply for a new balance transfer offer 30 days before the end of the promotional period. Transfer your balance one more time to finish paying it off without paying astronomical amounts of interest.

*Note: the average/low-end credit score approved came from research about average approval ratings on CreditKarma.com

Slate card credit score

Gretchen Lindow is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Gretchen at [email protected]

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Getting Approved For 1 Of These Credit Cards Means You Have Excellent Credit

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This Cash Back Number May Surprise You

Advertiser Disclosure: MagnifyMoney is an advertising-supported comparison service which receives compensation from some of the financial providers whose offers appear on our site. This compensation from our advertising partners may impact how and where products appear on the site (including for example, the order in which they appear). To provide more complete comparisons, the site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products.

Balance Transfer, Best of, Pay Down My Debt

9 Best 0% APR Credit Card Offers #8211; August 2017

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The editorial content on this page is not provided by any financial institution and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Slate card credit score

Nick Clements has worked in consumer banking for nearly 15 years and is the co-founder of MagnifyMoney.

There are a lot of 0% APR credit card deals in your mailbox and online, but most of them slap you with a 3 to 4% fee just to make a transfer, and that can seriously eat into your savings.

At MagnifyMoney we like to find deals no one else is showing, and we#8217;ve searched hundreds of balance transfer credit card offers to find the banks and credit unions that ANYONE CAN JOIN which offer great 0% interest credit card deals AND no balance transfer fees. We#8217;ve hand-picked them here.

If one 0% APR credit card doesn#8217;t give you a big enough credit line you can try another bank or credit union for the rest of your debt. With several no fee options it#8217;s not hard to avoid transfer fees even if you have a large balance to deal with.

1. Chase Slate ® #8211; 0% Introductory APR for 15 months, $0 Introductory Balance Transfer FEE

Slate card credit scoreThis deal is easy to find #8211; Chase is one of the biggest banks and makes this credit card deal well known. Save with a $0 introductory balance transfer fee and get 0% introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, and $0 annual fee. Plus, receive your Monthly FICO® Score for free.

You can get this offer if you complete the balance transfer within 60 days of opening the account. So it#8217;s worth a shot to see how big of a credit line you get. If it#8217;s not enough, move on to the other options below.

on Chase’s secure website

2. Barclaycard Ring™ MasterCard® #8211; 0% Introductory APR for 15 months, $0 Introductory Balance Transfer FEE

Slate card credit scoreThis card is available if you have excellent credit. Be aware that you have 45 days to complete this transfer after opening the account.

You can also nominate and vote on charity partners to donate card profits each year and there are no foreign transaction fees if you use the card abroad.

on Barclaycard’s secure website

Tip: The remaining no fee cards on this list are deals for 12 months or less. You might be better off paying a standard 3% balance transfer fee for a longer deal, like 0% for 18 months from the Discover It, one of the better deals with a balance transfer fee of 3%. If you#8217;re trying to transfer from Chase, consider a deal from Bank of America with $0 transfer terms.

3. Alliant Credit Union Credit Cards #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

Alliant is an easy credit union to work with because you don#8217;t have to be a Slate card credit scoremember to apply and find out if you qualify for the 0% APR deal.

Just choose #8216;not a member#8217; when you apply and if you are approved you#8217;ll then be able to become a member of the credit union to finish opening your account.

Slate card credit score

Anyone can become a member of Alliant by making a $10 donation to Foster Care to Success.

If your credit isn#8217;t great, you might not get a 0% rate #8211; rates for transfers are as high as 5.99%, so make sure you double check the rate you receive before opening the account, and they might ask for additional documents like your pay stubs to verify the information on your application.

on Alliant CU’s secure website

4. Edward Jones World MasterCard #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreYou#8217;ll need to go to an Edward Jones branch to open up an account first if you want this deal. Edward Jones is an investment advisory company, so they#8217;ll want to have a conversation about your retirement needs.

But you don#8217;t need to have money in stocks to be a customer of Edward Jones and try to get this card. Just beware that you only have 60 days to complete your transfer to lock in the 0% rate. This deal expires 11/30/2017.

5. First Tech Choice Rewards #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreAnyone can join First Tech Federal Credit Union by becoming a member of the Financial Fitness Association for $8, or the Computer History Museum for $15. You can apply for the card without joining first. This introductory 0% for 12 months on balance transfers with no fee deal is for the First Tech Choice Rewards World MasterCard, and you also get 10,000 points after you spend $2,000 on the card in your first 3 months. The points don#8217;t expire as long as you have the card, and 6,000 points is enough for $50 cash back, while 11,000 points is enough for $100 cash back, which can help you pay down your card.

6. La Capitol Federal Credit Union #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreAnyone can join La Capitol Federal Credit Union by becoming a member of the Louisiana Association for Personal Financial Achievement, which costs $20. Just indicate that#8217;s how you want to be eligible when you apply for the card #8211; no need to join before you apply. And La Capitol accepts members from all across the country, so you don#8217;t have to live in Louisiana to take advantage of this deal on the Prime Plus card.

7. Navy Federal Platinum #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreNavy Federal is the largest credit union in the country, and from time to time it offers a deal like this. It probably won#8217;t last long, so if you#8217;re interested get on it quickly.

Unfortunately if you don#8217;t have a military affiliation in your family you won#8217;t be able to join Navy Federal to take advantage of this. There used to be a way to join via the Navy League of San Diego, but that#8217;s no longer an option. You#8217;ll need to have a family member (grandparents, parents, spouses, siblings, grandchildren, children and household members) who is with or has served with the Armed Forces, DoD, Coast Guard or National Guard to be eligible to join.

8. Purdue Federal Credit Union #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreThis deal is only for their Visa Signature card #8211; other cards have a higher intro rate. The Purdue Federal Credit Union doesn#8217;t have open membership, but one way to be eligible for credit union membership is to join the Purdue University Alumni Association as a Friend of the University.

Anyone can join the association, but it costs $50. The minimum credit line on the Visa Signature card offering 0% is $5,000, so if approved the $50 would be like a transfer fee of 1% or less. The good news is you can apply and get a decision before you become a member of the Alumni Association.

9. Logix Credit Union Credit Card #8211; 0% APR for 12 months , NO FEE

If you live in AZ, CA, DC, MA, MD, ME, NH, NV, or VA you can join Logix Credit Union and apply for this deal. Some applicants have reported credit lines of $15,000 or more for balance transfers, so if you have excellent credit, good income, but a large amount to pay off (like a home equity line), this could be a good option.

10. First Tennessee Bank Credit Card #8211; 0% APR for 12 months, NO FEE

If you want to apply online for this deal, you#8217;ll need to live in a state where Slate card credit scoreFirst Tennessee has a branch though. Those states are: Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, and South Carolina.

You need to have an existing First Tennessee account to apply online, but if you don#8217;t have one, you can print out an application and mail it into their office to get a decision. You#8217;ll find a link to the paper application when the online form asks you whether you have an account or not.

11. Kinecta MyPower MasterCard #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreAnyone can join Kinecta credit union by becoming a member of the Consumers Cooperative Society of Santa Monica for $10. This card is special because it has no fees of any kind. No late, cash advance, or foreign transaction fees. There#8217;s also no penalty APR either, but if you make a late payment you lose the introductory rate.

12. Money One Credit Union #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreAnyone can join Money One Federal by making a $20 donation to Gifts of Easter Seals. And you can apply without being a member. You#8217;ll see a drop down option during the application process that lets you select Gifts of Easter Seals as the way you plan to become a member of the credit union. Credit lines for the Platinum card are as high as $25,000.

13. Andigo Credit Union #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreYou#8217;ll have a choice to apply for the Andigo Visa Platinum or Platinum Rewards. The Platinum Cash Back card doesn#8217;t have this deal. The Platinum without rewards has a lower ongoing APR, starting as low as 10.15%, compared to 12.15% for the Platinum Rewards card, so if you#8217;re not sure you#8217;ll pay it all off in 6 months the Platinum without rewards is a better bet.

Anyone can join Andigo by making a donation to Connect Vets for $15, and you can submit an application for the card without being a member yet.

14. Aspire Credit Union Credit Card #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

You don#8217;t have to be a member to apply and get a decision from Aspire. Once you Slate card credit scoredo, Aspire is easy to join #8211; just check that you want to join the American Consumer Council (free) while filling out your membership application online.

Make sure you apply for the regular #8216;Platinum#8217; card, and not the #8216;Platinum Rewards#8217; card, which doesn#8217;t offer the introductory deal. Aspire says people with fair credit can apply for its card.

on Aspire Credit Union’s secure website

15. Evansville Teachers Credit Union #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreYou don#8217;t need to be a teacher to join this credit union. Just make a $5 donation to Mater Dei Friends Alumni Association. The Prime Plus has an ongoing rate as low as 7.25% variable, so you can enjoy a low rate even after the intro deal ends.

16. Elements Financial Credit Card #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreTo become a member and apply, you#8217;ll just need to join TruDirection, a financial literacy organization. It costs just $5 and you can join as part of the application process.

on ELFCU’s secure website

17. Justice Federal Credit Union #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreIf you#8217;re not a Department of Justice, Homeland Security, or U.S. court employee (or a few others), you need to join a law enforcement organization to be a member of Justice Federal. One of the eligible associations for membership is the National Native American Law Enforcement Association. It costs $15 to join.

You can apply as a non-member online to get a decision before joining. And Justice is unique in that its Student credit card is also eligible for the 0% no fee deal, so if your credit history is limited and you#8217;re trying to deal with a balance on your very first card, this could be an option.

18. Xcel Platinum Visa #8211; 0% APR for 6 months, NO FEE

Slate card credit scoreAnyone can join Xcel by becoming a member of the American Consumer Council, and you can apply for the card as a non-member of the credit union, but not everyone who is approved for the card will get the low intro rate. Xcel advises you contact them to get as sense of whether your income, credit history, and employment history will qualify for the intro rate.

Are these the best deals for you?

If you can pay off your debt within the 0% period, then yes, a no fee 0% balance transfer credit card is your absolute best bet. And if you can#8217;t, you can hope that other 0% deals will be around to switch again.

But if you#8217;re unsure, you might want to consider#8230;

  • A deal that has a longer period before the rate goes up. In that case, a balance transfer fee could be worth it to lock in a 0% rate for longer.
  • Or, a card with a rate a little above 0% that could lock you into a low rate even longer.

The good news is we can figure it out for you.

Our handy, free balance transfer tool lets you input how much debt you have, and how much of a monthly payment you can afford. It will run the numbers to show you which offers will save you the most for the longest period of time.

The savings from just one balance transfer can be substantial.

Let#8217;s say you have $5,000 in credit card debt, you#8217;re paying 18% in interest, and can afford to pay $200 a month on it. Here#8217;s what you can save with a 0% deal:

  • 18%: It will take 32 months to pay off, with $1,312 in interest paid.
  • 0% for 12 months: You#8217;ll pay it off in 28 months, with just $502 in interest, saving you $810 in cash. That even assumes your rate goes back up to 18% after 12 months !

But your rate doesn#8217;t have to go up after 12 months. If you pay everything on time and maintain good credit, there#8217;s a great chance you#8217;ll be able to shop around and find another bank willing to offer you 0% interest again, letting you pay it off even faster.

Before you do any balance transfer though, make sure you follow these 6 golden rules of balance transfer success:

  • Never use the card for spending. You are only ready to do a balance transfer once you#8217;ve gotten your budget in order and are no longer spending more than you earn. This card should never be used for new purchases, as it#8217;s possible you#8217;ll get charged a higher rate on those purchases.
  • Have a plan for the end of the promotional period. Make sure you set a reminder on your phone calendar about a month or so before your promotional period ends so you can shop around for a low rate from another bank.
  • Don#8217;t try to transfer debt between two cards of the same bank. It won#8217;t work. Balance transfer deals are meant to #8216;steal#8217; your balance from a competing bank, not lower your rate from the same bank. So if you have a Chase Freedom with a high rate, don#8217;t apply for another Chase card like a Chase Slate and expect you can transfer the balance. Apply for one from another bank.
  • Get that transfer done within 60 days. Otherwise your promotional deal may expire unused.
  • Never use a card at an ATM. You should never use the card for spending, and getting cash is incredibly expensive. Just don#8217;t do it with this or any credit card.
  • Always pay on time. If you pay more than 30 days late your credit will be hurt, your rate may go up, and you may find it harder to find good deals in the future. Only do balance transfers if you#8217;re ready to pay at least the minimum due on time, every time.

Slate card credit score

Nick Clements is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Nick at [email protected]

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Advertiser Disclosure: MagnifyMoney is an advertising-supported comparison service which receives compensation from some of the financial providers whose offers appear on our site. This compensation from our advertising partners may impact how and where products appear on the site (including for example, the order in which they appear). To provide more complete comparisons, the site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products.

Review: Alliant Credit Union Visa Platinum Card Balance Transfer

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

The editorial content on this page is not provided by any financial institution and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Slate card credit score

If you have credit card debt, you are probably paying a high (double-digit) interest rate. One of the best ways to get out of debt faster is to use a 0% balance transfer offer. At MagnifyMoney, our favorite balance transfers have no balance transfer fee. Alliant Credit Union — a credit union that anyone can join — is offering a no-fee 0% balance transfer for 12 months. Although there are longer 0% balance transfers on the market, this is a solid no-fee option that can help you save money and become debt-free faster.

One added perk: Once you become a member of the credit union to take advantage of the balance transfer offer, you will also be able to take advantage of Alliant’s other competitive products. They offer a savings account that pays 1.05% APY. They offer 2.5% cash back on a new credit card. And their mortgage and auto loan rates are some of the lowest in the country. Alliant, one of our favorite credit unions in the country, provides the value you expect from a credit union with the user interface and digital tools that you would expect from a bank.

Slate card credit score

on Alliant CU’s secure website

Visa® Platinum Card from Alliant CU

In this article, we will explore:

The Alliant Visa Platinum Card is a very simple, straightforward credit card. There is no annual fee, and there are no rewards. You will probably be given a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 months that you have the card (more on that later). Even better — there is no fee for the balance transfer. After 12 months, the APR will range from 10.24% to 22.24%, depending upon your credit score.

Unfortunately, there is one part of this card that is a little complicated — and could lead to disappointment. You are not guaranteed the 0% interest rate for the 12 months. Depending upon your credit score, the interest rate during the 12-month promotional period could be as high as 5.99%. While a 5.99% rate (especially for someone with a less than perfect credit score) could be a good deal — it is certainly not the 0% intro APR being advertised.

In order to get the credit card, you will need to become a member of the credit union. There are a number of ways that you can become a member. Some of the ways are free (for example, you live in a community in Illinois that is covered). But for most people, the easiest way to join is to make a $10 donation to Foster Care to Success. This is an organization that serves foster teens across the U.S. that are “ageing out” of the system. Once you make that contribution, you will be eligible to join the credit union and get the credit card (along with other credit union products). The application process is easy — you just need to select “not a member” at the beginning of the process, and it will walk you through the membership process as part of your credit card application.

The credit card does offer some standard credit card perks, like $0 fraud liability and rental car insurance. However, the real value is the low interest rate that can help you become debt-free fast.

If you want to earn rewards, Alliant does offer another card — the Visa Platinum Rewards Card. This card has the same balance transfer offer (0% for 12 months with no balance transfer fee). But with this card, you also earn rewards. You can earn 2 points for every $1 spent on the card. However, the APRs (after the balance transfer period) will be higher. In general, we advise people to separate their spending from their borrowing. Cards that offer no rewards tend to have lower interest rates, and cards with rewards have higher interest rates — as we see in this case. If you are looking to become debt-free, it is probably better to ignore rewards and get the lowest interest rate possible.

Alliant targets people with good or excellent credit. In general, that means you have a decent chance of being approved if your score is in the mid-600s, but you have a much better chance of being approved if your score is above 700.

In addition, Alliant (like all lenders) will need to be comfortable that you will be able to afford your payments. That means you will need to have a steady source of income. In addition, the lender will likely look at your total debt in relation to your income. If you have too much debt, you will find it more difficult to get approved.

No fee for the balance transfer.

There is nothing better than free. And with no balance transfer fee and no interest for 12 months, that is exactly what you get. Pay down as much of the debt as possible during the promotional period — because every dollar of every payment will go toward principal.

At MagnifyMoney, we like credit unions — in theory. As member-owned organizations, credit unions do not need to worry about shareholders and should be able to offer better value and lower interest rates. Unfortunately, far too many credit unions have websites that look like they were designed in the 1990s. With Alliant, we finally have a credit union that has made the application process easy, and has a great website. Alliant is delivering on the true potential of a credit union.

What We Don’t Like About the Card

It is not the longest balance transfer.

There are a number of longer no-fee balance transfer options on the market. You can get a no-fee balance transfer for as long as 15 months from some of the leading banks in the country.

You are not guaranteed a 0% intro offer — the rate could be higher.

In the fine print, Alliant makes it clear that you might not get a 0% intro rate. The intro rate could be as high as 5.99%, depending upon your credit score. The only silver lining: Alliant is willing to give intro rates to people with less than perfect credit. But we still find it a bit annoying that you could apply for a 0% intro rate and end up with a 5.99% rate instead.

Joining the credit union costs money.

If you can’t find a free way to join the credit union, you will have to make a $10 donation. We certainly like the cause that you would be supporting. However, it is still additional money that you would need to spend in order to get access to the product.

How to Complete a Balance Transfer

Completing the balance transfer is easy. During the application process, you can provide the credit card number of your existing credit cards (where the debt is located now). Alliant will then make a payment to your existing credit card companies.

Alternatively, you can call Alliant once you have the card to complete the balance transfer on the phone.

Just remember these tips:

  • If you start the balance transfer close to the payment date, you might want to make the minimum payment to ensure you don’t get hit with any late charges. Although balance transfers usually process quickly — they can take a couple of weeks. And you would not want to get stuck with a late fee.
  • Get the transfer done as quickly as possible. The 0% is for 12 months from when you open the account — not from when you transfer the debt. The faster your transfer the debt, the more money you can save.

If You Want a Longer Intro Period and No Balance Transfer Fee

With Barclaycard Ring, you can get 0% intro APR for 15 months on a balance transfer and no intro balance transfer fee — so long as you complete the transfer within 45 days of opening the card. Just remember: Barclaycard only accepts people with excellent credit.

Barclaycard is the American credit card division of Barclays Bank. Barclays is a large British bank, and you don#8217;t need a branch near you to get the card.

Who Benefits Most from the Card

If you have credit card debt that you think you can pay off in a year, this is a great option. With no balance transfer fee and 0% interest for one year — you can pay down your debt quickly. If you think it will take longer to pay off your debt, you might want to consider a longer balance transfer from a more traditional bank.

Can anyone join the Alliant Credit Union?

Yes, anyone can join. During the application process, you will be asked if you are already a member of the credit union. Just select “not a member” and you can join during the application process.

What happens if I don#8217;t pay off the balance transfer at the end of the promo period?

Once the introductory period is over, interest will start to accrue at the standard purchase interest rate on a go-forward basis. Interest during the introductory period is waived — so you do not need to worry about a retroactive interest charge.

Can a balance transfer raise my credit score?

In the short term, your credit score will probably take a small hit (5-10 points) because you applied for new credit. However, over time, a balance transfer can increase your credit score with proper practices. This is because while new credit makes up 10% of your credit score, the amount you owe accounts for 30%. By using a balance transfer, you will reduce your interest rate. That should help you get out of debt a lot faster.

Slate card credit score

Liz Stapleton is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Liz here


Chase Slate Credit Card Review

The Chase Slate Credit Card is designed help users pay off their debt as quickly as possible. New cardholders can utilize the 0% APR on balance transfers and purchases to help meet their financial goals sooner. This card comes with many other benefits such as monthly credit monitoring, added security features, and the option to add authorized users to your account.

The Chase Slate Card comes with an introductory 0% interest rate, top of the line security features, and purchase protection/extended warranty plans. Cardholders can also enjoy not having to pay any annual membership fees, along with many other features and benefits.

Keep in mind that while there is no charge for membership, this card does attract other fees such as penalties, cash advance, and foreign transaction fees.

Benefits of the Chase Slate Credit Card

Introductory balance transfer offer: 0% APR and $0 fee on balance transfers. Reverts back to standard APR with a 5% or $5 fee (whichever is greater) after 15 months.

Great introductory rate for purchases: Introductory purchase rate of 0% APR for the first 15 months.

Monthly FICO Score and credit dashboard: Monthly summary of credit report information.

Specialized protection plans: Zero liability, fraud protection, no penalty APR, embedded chip, and purchase protection.

Features of the Chase Slate Credit Card

Annual fee. This credit card attracts no annual membership fee.

Low interest rate. Enjoy 0% promotional APR for the first 15 months that your account is open. After that, APR varies from 13.24% to 23.24%, based on your creditworthiness.

Adding authorized users. You can add authorized users to your account, such as a child or sibling. They will have the same charging privileges but will not be responsible for making payments.

Fee. $0 fee on transfers within 60 days opening your account. After that you will pay either $5 or 5%, whichever is greater. Either $10 or 5% fee on cash advances. 3% fee on all foreign transactions.

Price purchase protection/ extended warranty. These features are always available when you use your card. Restrictions may apply.

Credit monitoring. Free monthly FICO score online and detailed credit report information.

Text alerts. Be alerted via text when there is anything going on with your card. Message and data rates may apply.

Online and mobile features. Monitor your account online from wherever you are. Register online to learn more about the Blueprint features.

Compare other Chase credit cards

How to apply for the Chase Slate Credit Card

If you#8217;re interested in applying for a Chase Slate Credit Card, you will have to meet certain eligibility criteria.

-You must be 18 years or older to apply (19 in AL and NE)

-You must be a US citizen

-Your full name and residential address

-Your date of birth and social security number

-Your contact information

-Information about your income and employment

It is always important to shop around when applying for a new line of credit. Check out our credit card comparisons to review the features and benefits so you can choose the card that#8217;s best suited for you.