The answer is yes, but the process can vary between banks.
The average Australian has more than $3,000 of credit card debt, $1,891 of which is collecting interest. This debt is typically spread between 2.2 credit cards, which means most of us carry more than one card at a time. If you're looking to consolidate your debts under one account, a balance transfer credit card could be the answer.
How to consolidate multiple credit card debts with a balance transfer
When you request a balance transfer and complete a credit card application, you can usually nominate to move debt from multiple existing credit card accounts. So, it's useful to have the details of your existing account handy before you start your application. The exact number of debts you can transfer may vary between banks, but you can usually transfer between one to four debts to a new account. If you're approved for the balance transfer, your debts will be consolidated into a single balance on your new card within one or two weeks.
Rather than juggling multiple accounts with different interest rates, you can then pay off your debt under one account with a 0% interest rate for a promotional period. Not only is this easier, but you could also save hundreds or thousands of dollars in interest. You can see our guide to combining multiple debts with a balance transfer for more information.
Are there any limitations?
- Balance transfer limit. Although you can usually transfer multiple debts, the combined debt can't exceed the balance transfer limit. Depending on the card, some banks pose a balance transfer limit which can restrict the size of the debt you can transfer. The balance transfer limit is usually a percentage (say 70% or 90%) of your approved credit limit. So, if you had an approved credit limit of $10,000 with a balance transfer limit of 80%, you could only move up to $8,000 to your new account. If your combined debt exceeds this amount, the remainder will stay in your old account, which you'll have to pay off at the standard interest rate. Are you moving a large debt? If so, you can compare high credit limit balance transfer credit cards on finder.
- Eligible banks. If you're transferring debts from multiple credit cards, make sure that they're all eligible banks. This is because you can't transfer balances from different cards from the same bank or from partnered banks. For example, you couldn't transfer a balance from one NAB card to a new NAB card with a 0% balance transfer offer. Similarly, you can't transfer balances between BankSA and Bank of Melbourne accounts as they're both owned by Westpac. Check out our guide on which banks you can and can't transfer between for more information.
- Number of accounts. As mentioned above, the exact number of accounts you can move will vary from bank to bank. If you're hoping to transfer balances from three accounts but the application only has space to include details for two accounts, for example, contact the provider to confirm whether you can request an additional account to be added to the application.
- Eligibility requirements. As with any credit card, you're required to meet a set of eligibility requirements to receive approval. These requirements can range between age limit, residential status and annual income. You can check the credit card reviews on finder to confirm the specific eligibility requirements for the card you're hoping to apply for.
If your balance transfer request is successful and you've moved your accounts to your new credit card, make sure to contact your old banks to close your other accounts. If you don't, you'll continue paying any maintenance fees that come with those cards.
Find out how much you could save in four steps with the balance transfer calculator
Step 1. Enter the total debt/outstanding amount you would like to transfer. If you're consolidating multiple debts, you can enter the combined amount.
Step 2. Provide the interest rate that you are paying on your existing debt (if you don't have your interest rate on you, the average is around 18-20%).
Step 3. See the 'Interest Saved' column to find out which credit cards will save you the most money. Click on the 'Interest Saved' title to sort the cards in ascending or descending order of money saved.
Step 4. Compare the credit cards available in the table provided to find the card that suits your needs. If you still want to find out more about a particular credit card, click the ‘More info’ link for a full review on the features and benefits.
Balance transfer calculator and comparison
Now that you know how to consolidate multiple debts, you can concentrate on paying down your debt with a 0% balance transfer credit card. Check out our guide to balance transfer credit cards to compare your options and learn how balance transfers work.Back to top