Low interest rate credit cards
That low interest rate credit card may seem like a great deal, but when does the introductory APR run out? Low interest rate credit cards are out there, but you should compare cards and find one that fits your lifestyle before you apply. For example, if you plan to carry a balance beyond the introductory period, look for a low "go-to" interest rate, which will apply to the purchase balance once the promotional rate expires. Compare balance transfer fees and rates if you need to move debt.
Fixed vs. variableCredit cards will have either fixed rates or variable rates. In the case of charge cards, which must be paid in full, there is no interest rate. Most credit cards today have variable interest rates, which are tied to an index such as the prime rate. When the index moves, the variable rate will adjust accordingly.
Under the Credit CARD Act of 2009, variable rate increases resulting from index movement can apply to an existing balance, but these rate hikes will follow the index. You won't see your interest rate spike to the penalty rate unless it's triggered by a 60-day delinquency. The law requires fixed rates to remain fixed for the specified time period.
Worry about the rate itself not whether the rate is fixed or variable. Issuers reserve the right to change the rate type. To find a low interest rate credit card, use Bankrate's credit card finder.
Credit unionLow interest rate credit cards from credit unions are a viable option if you aren't looking for the rewards and rebates of a major bank credit card. Credit unions generally offer lower interest rates and fees, so if you carry a balance, they may be cheaper. Penalty rates also tend to be lower, and may not even exist, on credit union credit cards. Because credit unions are owned by their members, major rate hikes and other changes are less likely. You do have to join the credit union, though, to qualify for one of their cards. Use Bankrate's compare credit union rate tool to find a credit union credit card and a credit union near you.
Find one that fitsThe type of low interest rate credit card you choose should largely depend on what you plan to do with it. If you plan to pay the balance in full, then you might be better off with a rewards card that doesn't charge an annual fee. As long as you always pay off the balance every month, the interest rate won't affect you. Bankrate's credit card comparison lets you search for the best credit card by credit type, card type or issuer.
Create a news alert for "credit cards"