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6 Credit Cards That Can Help Get Your Debt Under Control

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For some, getting out of credit card debt may be the most challenging personal finance task they will ever undertake. As unsecured debt that is not tax-deductible, credit card interest charges can be especially painful. Further, as credit card users try to pay down their debt, they may also be using their cards for day-to-day purchases, which increases their interest charges while pushing back the date when they will pay off their debt.

The first step to getting out of debt, of course, is to put a moratorium on credit card spending — which may involve revisiting (or establishing) your budget. Once you have that on lockdown, choosing the right credit card can actually help you get your existing debt under control. The right card can offer interest-free balance transfers, lower standard interest rates, and less punitive rates and fees. From there, it helps to come up with a plan to pay off the debt — this free calculator can help you do that.

Here are six credit cards that offer valuable tools that can help make paying off your debt more manageable:

Chase Slate

Chase Slate is currently the only credit card that offers 0% APR promotional financing on balance transfers, with no balance transfer fee. New cardholders receive 15 months of interest-free financing on balance transfers completed within 60 days, with no fees. Customers also receive 15 months of 0% APR introductory financing on new purchases. Other tools that can help as you manage your debt include a free monthly FICO score, as well as access to Chase’s Blueprint program. Blueprint includes budgeting and goal-setting tools that empower you to control your debt by paying it off on a schedule that you create. You can also use Blueprint to avoid interest charges by paying off some purchases in full while carrying a balance on others. There is no annual fee for this card.

PenFed Promise Card

If you have faced setbacks because of credit card fees, you might want to check out the PenFed Promise Card — it has no fees at all, including late fees and balance transfer fees. New cardholders receive a 4.99% APR promotional rate for balance transfers that is good for 12 months, and a standard interest rate of 7.99% – 16.99% for both new purchases and balance transfers. Further this card has no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees and no penalty interest rate. Applicants must first join the Pentagon Federal Credit Union, which you may do as an employee or family member of an employee in many different government and defense organizations. Or you can join a military support charity such as Voices for America’s Troops for a small, one-time fee. This card was the winner for Best Simple Credit Card in America.

Barclaycard Ring MasterCard

This card offers a competitive standard interest rate and a low fee structure. With this card, you receive a standard interest rate of just 8% (variable) which applies to both new purchases and balance transfers. In addition, there are no balance transfer fees for this card, making it a good option for debt consolidation. Finally, the Barclaycard Ring is managed in part by cardholders through their online community. There is no annual fee for this card.

Citi Simplicity Card

The Citi Simplicity Card offers new cardholders 21 months of interest-free financing on both new purchases and balance transfers, with a 3% balance transfer fee. This card also features friendlier policies such as no late fees, no penalty interest rate and a free credit score. There is no annual fee for this card.

Discover It With 18 Months of 0% APR on Balance Transfers

This offer for the Discover it card features 18 months of interest-free financing on balance transfers (with a 3% balance transfer fee), and six months of 0% APR on new purchases. Cardholders can benefit from Discover’s policies of waiving the first late payment fee and having no penalty interest rate (though do keep in mind that a late payment will still show up on your credit report, and may negatively affect your credit scores). Discover also provides customers with a free credit score. In addition, this card is a rewards card that offers 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent each quarter on purchases from select categories of merchants, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. There is no annual fee for this card.

BankAmericard Credit Card

The BankAmericard Credit Card offers 15 months of interest-free financing on new purchases and balance transfers, with a 3% balance transfer fee. It also features a standard interest rate of as low as 10.99% for the most qualified applicants. It also features plenty of features to keep track of your account such as alerts, mobile banking and text banking. There is no annual fee for this card.

Before you apply for any credit card, checking your credit score can give you a good idea of where you stand, which can help you target your search to credit cards that are geared to your credit score range (and thus, you’re more likely to be approved for). You can get your credit scores for free many ways, including through Credit.com, where your scores are updated every month.

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.

At publishing time, Chase SlateBarclaycard Ring MasterCard, Citi Simplicity Card, PenFed Promise and Discover it are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.

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  • Fran2304

    I have a low credit score and I need help. I was a victim of identity theft in 2011, and it is still a nightmare. I have cleared the balances on most of the accounts that were affected, but there are two that just keep on creating problems. one of them was cleared with the creditor and I got a written clearance letter from them that I am not responsible for the debt, and I sent it to all credit reporting agencies and the collection agency that continues to haunt me. This collection agency cleared the debt off my credit report at one time, then all of a sudden, it appeared back on my credit report. Is this legal?. How can they clear it off then sneak back in and re-post it?. I feel like I am swimming in an ocean of grief, because now they refuse to remove the debt from my report. I also have two medical bills that the insurance company has not yet paid, but it showed up on my credit report not once, but twice, knocking my score down over 200 points. Both of these bills add up to less than $150.00 Otherwise, I have three accounts that have a perfect credit history with no late payments whatsoever, and no other complaints. I have disputed the incorrect accounts with all three credit reporting agencies and they do NOTHING to help me get this black mark against me removed. I have done all I can do, other than hire an Attorney, but I am disabled and live on Social Security only, and cannot afford a legal bill. Is there ANYTHING I can do to improve my credit score? I now face having these negative effects on my credit report for 7 years. I have done all I know to do. Please advise.

    I am totally frustrated .

    • http://www.Credit.com/ Gerri Detweiler

      I’d suggest you talk with a consumer protection attorney in your area. They may be able to help you at no out of pocket cost to you if they think you have a good case. You can visit the website of the National Association of Consumer Advocates to find one with experience in debt collection and credit reporting. Will you let us know if that works out?

  • Jordan

    My financial lady told me to get a secured credit card, which I did thru my bank. My credit is now in five months to where she can get me a mortgage. When I called her and told her what it was now she muttered must have been the credit card. I did not want one but only spend $35 a month then pay it off. I am so happy that I took her advice.

    • http://www.credit.com/ Credit.com Credit Experts

      Good to hear a success story. Thanks for sharing.

  • http://www.Credit.com/ Gerri Detweiler

    I apologize if it wasn’t clearer and I can’t imagine how frustrating this is for you.

    Credit reporting agencies are not allowed to reinsert information that has been previously deleted without first notifying the consumer and unless the furnisher of that information certifies that it is correct. If they fail on either front, that is illegal under the FCRA. I wrote about that in this story:
    Credit Deja Vu: When Negative Information Keeps Showing Up on Your Credit Report

    Furthermore, based on what you are saying it sounds like it shouldn’t be on your report in the first place.

    That’s why I suggested you talk with an attorney and explained that there are attorneys who help consumers with these kinds of problems at no out of pocket cost to them. I wanted you to be aware that even though you have a limited income it doesn’t mean you may not be able to get help from a qualified attorney.

    (While I’d love to be able to fix it for you, we aren’t a credit repair company nor do we have the ability to change information in your credit reports.)

    Of course, whether you have what they think is a good case depends on all the facts and circumstances. But even if I told you that what they did was definitely illegal (and I don’t feel comfortable doing that since I am not an attorney, nor do I have all the details of what transpired), that wouldn’t help you fix it–and you need to get it fixed.

    As you mentioned, you’re tired of self-help solutions so I’ll reiterate that it could be a good idea for you to talk with a consumer law attorney with experience in identity theft and credit reporting so you can put this behind you once and for all.

    As for the other issue regarding the refund I have forwarded your query to customer support so they can respond to you directly.

Certain credit cards and other financial products mentioned in this and other articles on Credit.com News & Advice may also be offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com will be compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards or products. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.

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