How does a balance transfer help you save money?
Clear your debt and cut your interest costs with a 0% balance transfer credit card.
If you're overwhelmed with debt, you can use a balance transfer credit card to clear your balance without the burden of interest for a promotional period. However, some cards will offer you more savings than others depending on the size of your debt and your ability to repay. You can use the calculator built into the table below to compare current balance transfer credit card offers by the products that offer you the biggest savings.
Balance Transfer Credit Cards Comparison
How can a balance transfer help me save money?
A balance transfer credit card is designed to give you more breathing room to pay off your debt without any interest for a promotional period. Depending on the size of your debt and the interest rate you're currently paying, this could save you tens, hundreds or thousands of dollars. Below we've explained how balance transfers work and how the different features can help you save.
Promotional balance transfer rate
Most balance transfer credit cards in Australia boast a 0% interest rate for a promotional period. Compared to the standard purchase rate (which can range from 9.99% on a low rate card to around 22% on a premium card), you can take advantage of the interest-free period to clear your debt without the burden of additional costs. At the end of the promotional period, a higher revert rate will apply to any remaining debt from the transfer. To make the most of your balance transfer card, you should aim to pay your debt in full before this revert rate kicks in.
Length of introductory period
The length of the 0% balance transfer offer can usually vary from 6 to 24 months (although they can last longer). The longer the interest-free period, the more you can space out your repayments and generally the more you can save on interest costs. As a bunch of balance transfer credit cards may offer 0% for 24 months, for example, you can consider other factors including the annual fee, balance transfer fee and revert rate to compare which option is right for you.
Ideally, you should pick a balance transfer card that gives you enough time to pay off your entire balance in full before the revert interest rate applies. For example, let's say you have a debt of $5,000 and are looking at a card with 0% on balance transfers for 18 months. You'd need to allocate $278 each month to clear your debt in the first 18 months. If you don't think you can afford this each month, look for a card with a longer interest-free period to spread out and reduce your monthly repayments.
How to use the balance transfer calculator in 3 easy steps
Now that you know how a balance transfer can help you save money, you can use the table above to compare which credit cards offer you the biggest savings in 3 easy steps:
- Step 1. Enter the total debt/outstanding amount you would like to transfer
- 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
If you want to find out more about a particular credit card, click the ‘More info’ link for a full review on the features and benefits.
Example of table taken from 25 July 2018Back to top
VIDEO: Money expert Michelle Hutchison explains 'What is a Balance Transfer?'
A balance transfer credit card can be a useful debt consolidation tool when you pick the right card and pay off your balance in full. As there are many 0% balance transfer credit cards on the market, make sure to compare your options before you apply.
Image: ShutterstockBack to top
Ask an Expert
Credit Cards Comparison
* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.