First of all, your site is great! I received a
blank check from my credit card company that can be used for either cash or
purchases. It is a low 3.99 percent rate for life of the loan. The balance on my
credit card has a variable 8.99 percent rate. Would I be able to write a check
out for the balance on the credit card, deposit it in my checking account, and
then turn around and send a personal check to the credit card company for the
balance total thus lowering the rate from 8.99 percent to the 3.99 percent?
Thanks in advance.
Thanks for your comments about DebtSmart.com! Glad
to hear that you like it!
Banks aggressively promote low-rate transfer
offers like the 3.99 percent check you received. The reason is because they want
you to start using them again. Banks spend a considerable amount of their
marketing dollars to get you as a customer, and they need to turn a profit from your
activity. If you havenít used your accounts for a short period, then itís a sure
bet that you will receive decent transfer offers on all your credit card
In fact, the best transfer offers are typically
existing credit cards. Thatís because you have an established relationship with
that bank. New banks vying for your business might present good offers initially;
however, they usually include fine-print legalese that release them from
delivering on their promises.
The offer you received sounds pretty nice: 3.99
percent for the life of the loan. Most of the time, you should be able to write
the check to yourself, deposit to your checking account, and pay out as you
please. Read all the fine print in your credit card offer to be sure that there
are no catches. For example, itís common for there to be balance transfer fees
associated with this offer. In this case, probably something like 3% of the
amount with a $5 minimum and $50 maximum. These fees add to the
cost of your transfer, but if you're working with a substantial amount of money, it will be worthwhile.
If there are transfer fees, call
the bank and ask if they will waive these fees if you do the transfer by phone.
I have had this experience before where phone transfers had no fees. Itís worth
Otherwise, you are in good shape to use that
check as you wish. Go ahead and transfer your balance and reduce your rate with
other cards with rates greater than 3.99 percent, but sending the check to the
same bank won't make sense. That's because you would simply be paying off the
balance you just created by depositing the check! The 3.99 percent offer is for
the life of the loan. Once you send your personal check payment back to the
bank, you will pay off that 3.99 percent balance (owe nothing at 3.99 percent) and be
left with your original balance at the original rate, thereby accomplishing
nothing but wasting