Paying One Credit Card with Another: What You Need to Know

As anyone who has struggled (or is struggling) with credit card debt can attest to, trying to get out of debt is a painful, difficult, often-frustrating process. Being forced to power through such a setback can cause many individuals to brainstorm all sorts of ideas relating to remedying the situation, some of which are admittedly not very useful. One of the most common ideas brainstormed with the intention of eliminating credit card debt is simply to pay the due-for-payment credit card with another, previously unused card, thereby gaining additional time to chip away at the balance.

After conceiving of such an idea, most individuals immediately wonder if it’s actually feasible—if one credit card can really be paid with another, unused credit card. The answer, in short, is “kind of.” The following text describes and explains all the different aspects of the credit-card payment process, in terms of paying a due balance with another card’s charge-free balance.

Let’s take a look!

It should be first noted that paying a credit card’s balance with another credit card isn’t as simple as, say, checking out at the grocery store. On the contrary, such a maneuver is referred to as a credit transfer. Unlike regular credit card charges, which are only issued interest fees if not paid in full by the end of the billing period, balance transfers are automatically subjected to a one-time fee as soon as they’re initiated (and will still be charged interest as part of the billing period). Balance transfer rates vary from credit card to credit card.

For example, a credit card with a balance transfer rate of 15% would add $1500 onto a transferred balance of $10,000—and that’s quite a bit of extra credit! With that said, something of a catch-22 is often encountered by individuals who intend to transfer their credit card’s balance; failing to pay-off credit card debt diminishes one’s credit score, and the lower one’s credit score is, the less he or she will be allowed to transfer to a single card.

And so, someone with $10,000 in credit card debt who is eager to transfer this debt to a lower-interest card may be forced to pay a 15% transfer fee, but be allowed to transfer only $2,000. Thus, the fee incurred in the specified example would be $300, and if the process is repeated across several cards (to disperse the entirety of the $10,000 balance), there’s a good chance that more than $1,500—or the amount that would be paid if the whole $10,000 balance was transferred to a different card at a rate of 15%–will be charged.

Worst of all, if one’s credit score is poor at the time he or she receives a new credit card, a transfer might not be possible at all. In such an instance and others like it, it’s recommended that individuals explore another means of securing funds—preferably one that’s independent of credit history.

For instance, the ever-popular car title loan requires no credit check, is fast and easy, and can be completed in minutes. To receive such a loan, one simply offers his or her car title to a creditor temporarily, until the provided funds are paid back (with interest). The upsides of such a loan are that almost anyone with a vehicle will be approved and will be presented with quick cash, and the downsides of such a loan are that the interest rates are sky-high and that one’s vehicle can be repossessed if the balance isn’t paid off in the agreed upon amount of time.

As was stated initially, there’s nothing pleasant about climbing out of credit card debt. Remember to remain calm, stay strong, and plan for the long term, and before long, credit issues will become problems of the past. Thanks for reading and good luck!

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