Top 5 Reasons to Get a New Credit Card
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You’re scared of trying anything new. It’s in your nature. You figure any new deal — especially a credit card deal — must have a catch.
But here’s the thing: credit card companies do have promising — and real — deals to offer newcomers. It’s their way of winning you over. You still need to consider the full details (e.g.: what’s the APR after that intro period is over? Will you have to pay an annual fee?), but if you get up to speed on what’s available, you can benefit in the long run by signing up for a new credit card. We give you the five reasons why below.
1. You want rewards
If your current cards don’t offer many (or any) cash back rewards or deals on travel, hotels, and car rentals, you may be bypassing significant savings. The same holds true if you have a card with rewards that don't match your current spending patterns - e.g., the card offers 2% back only on purchases at hotels but you rarely travel. (As a general rule, rewards cards carry higher interest rates, so they aren’t ideal for people who carry balances. Rewards cards are a great option for people who plan to pay in full each month. If you plan to carry a balance, consider a low interest credit card instead.)
In addition, if you make $3,000 or more in purchases in the first 90 days from opening an account, you'll earn 40,000 bonus miles (worth a $400 travel statement credit) with the Barclaycard Arrival Plus.
Plus, if you make $500 in purchases in your first 3 months from account opening, you'll earn a $100 bonus with the Chase Freedom. In addition, the card has a 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. After the intro period, a variable APR of 13.99%-22.99% depending on your creditworthiness.
2. You want to save money with an introductory 0% APR
These days, it’s possible to find a credit card offering a 0% introductory APR for 12 to 18 months on balance transfers. Done correctly, transferring balances from your existing credit cards to a credit card with a 0% introductory APR is a great way to save money.
3. You want to improve your credit score
Because your credit score is determined, in part, by the amount of credit card debt you carry compared with your credit card limits (the “credit utilization ratio”), getting a new card can help improve your credit score in the long run. For example, if you currently have a balance of $5,000 on a card with a $7,500 credit limit, your credit utilization ratio is nearly 67%, which is considered high. By signing up for a new card, that ratio will drop.
Plus, you usually just need average credit to qualify for the Barclaycard Rewards. If you have bad credit, consider a secured credit card instead.
4. You want a low interest rate
Chances are, the credit cards you got when you were younger, poorer, and had a less-established credit history aren’t giving you the best interest rates and credit limits. If so, it’s time to “play the field.” As long as you have a good score, apply for a card with a lower APR.
5. You want a fair credit card
If your old credit card changes its terms, policies, fee structures, or rewards program more often than you change your socks, it may be time to find a better match. For example, if you occasionally need cash advances, but the card keeps raising the interest rates on these transactions, you may be able to find a more suitable “partner” elsewhere.
If you’re a mature adult with a good job and a good credit score, it probably makes no sense to stick with the card you got when you were a struggling college student with no credit history. You’ll probably qualify for a new credit card with a lower APR, better rewards, and more perks. Sometimes the best way to manage your credit is to get a divorce and find a new credit card.
Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwised endorsed by any card issuer. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.
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