You Can Trim Your Credit Card Rate

You Can Trim Your Credit Card Rate


Lots of people are infuriated with their banks as they learn that their credit card interest rates have suddenly climbed higher.  These consumers haven’t done anything wrong, having paid their bills on time and maintained good credit.

moneyMany banks on the other hand have received billions of dollars of taxpayer money thanks to various bail out initiatives started under the Bush administration and continuing with President Obama. Consumer activists have have suggested that people are getting stuck both ways – by bailing out the banks and then paying for the bail out through increased fees and bank charges.

As the expression goes, “you cannot fight city hall,” which is how many people feel about what is going on in Washington, DC these days. However, you can fight your credit card lender and win. Let’s take a look at some ways that you can get your credit card interest rate reduced to a more sensible level.

Steps To Reduce Your Credit Card Interest Rate

Make A Call – Contact your credit card provider’s customer service department. That phone number should be on the card itself as well as on your last statement. You’ll need to have your credit card number handy, because you’ll probably be speaking or punching in that sixteen digit number at least once during your call.

Negotiate – Some banks will lower your interest rate without a fight, figuring you mean business simply because you made a phone call. Other banks need a good reason to drop your rate which means you’ll have to do your homework before you pick up the phone to make your request known. Contact other credit card companies to see if you can get a lower rate from them. Don’t sign up, at least right now, instead use that lower rate from the other company as leverage to get your lender to drop their rate.

Be Persistent – Lots of consumers give up when they are told “no” by the phone representative. That’s a big mistake. Instead, kindly ask to speak with a supervisor who can usually be persuaded to drop your rate by several points.

Try Again – If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. If nobody will budge on the other side, then politely end the call – you gave it your best shot. Next week, call back again because you’ll probably get connected to someone else. Yes, it is crazy – sometimes you can get what you want by simply talking with someone else, a person who is more willing to deal.

Switch – If you still can’t get a lower rate and you’ve got an offer from another card with a lower rate and that card accepts balance transfers, then move your balance over. Be careful – fees often apply and your low rate may be for only six to twelve months. Still, with a lower introductory rate and a more reasonable long term rate, you may find that your efforts to secure a lower interest rate have paid off.

Never Give Up!

Too many consumers give up when the first bit of resistance is offered. Be persistent! You can get what you want or close to it if you put up a polite fight. You probably won’t be able to change your bank’s overall policy, but you may be able to win a lower rate for yourself, but only if you are willing to speak up.

Adv. — Besides securing a lower credit card rate, you can save money on all of your purchases by shopping wisely. Lots of online retailers selling a variety of goods have what you want at a price that can’t be beat. You can find stoneware, cutlery and gifts, indoor gardens, as well as heating, cooling and purifying systems for less. Much less at that!


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Categories: Credit Cards

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".