From what we’ve discussed, 0% APR cards may be worth checking out, since they give you certain types of offers and rewards when you make large purchases or pay a bill.
However, if you are interested in applying for a 0% APR card, you should first make sure you understand how the offer works and how you plan to use the card.
What is the APR rate?
The Better Money Habits portal of Bank of America explains that APR stands for annual percentage rate, and it applies to any type of loan, from mortgages to credit cards.
APR is a more complex measure of borrowing costs for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Since there are other charges for both using and maintaining the credit card in addition to the nominal interest rate charged by the bank. In Mexico, it is known as the Annual Total Cost (CAT).
How long has the APR been in effect?
Before 1990, only the Nominal Interest Rate (TIN) was taken into account when calculating the extra expense or profitability of a financial product. There are a variety of concepts that were left out, such as commissions, the term of the loan, and other expenses, that the client ends up paying the bank one way or another. In order to know how much was earned or returned, the Bank of Spain created the APR, which has been used since then.
TIN VS APR
Both the APR and the TIN must accompany financial products. If you still have any doubts about what the APR is, the TIN simply represents how much you pay the bank for lending you money without including any additional fees.
Therefore, you may want to pay attention to the TIN, but it does not indicate the total amount that you will have to pay. The TINs of different loans are not comparable, since they do not include all the expenses of the operation. When it comes to personal loans, the APR is usually higher than the TIN.
Different types of 0% APR offers
0% APR offers are available for certain purchases or balance transfers between cards, such as debt replacement or purchases.
It is important to note that a purchase APR, or alternatively, annual percentage rate for purchases, is the interest rate that will apply to your purchases if you have a positive balance on your credit card.
While a credit card offer may boast 0% APR, it may not apply to balance transfers like it does to purchases.
We will now tell you what the types of 0% APR offers are:
Offers for purchases at 0% APR
You will not be charged interest for purchases made during a specified period of time, as determined by your credit card company.
You must make at least the minimum payments on your statement in order to take advantage of this offer.
As an example, if you receive an offer for 12 months, you will not be charged interest for those items that you purchase during the first year after you open your account.
If, at the end of the introductory period, you maintain a full balance, you may be eligible for this offer.
0% APR on balance transfers
Transferring a balance from another credit card is subject to a 0 percent APR offer.
It is a type of offer that, in most cases, also comes with an introductory period.
whether a credit card has 0% APR?
It is important to read the fine print on a credit card to determine whether it offers 0% APR.
Keep in mind that even if a card offers 0% APR, you may have to pay interest on certain purchases.
If your 0% APR offer was only intended for balance transfers, then any new purchases you make on your card may result in interest charges unless you keep your total monthly payment current.
Additionally, you should be aware of penalty APRs , which can be charged if you exceed your credit limit or make late payments.
A penalty APR can be higher than the regular APR, in fact, it can be as high as 29.99%.
You may lose your introductory APR offer if there are any late payments, even one late payment can damage your credit score.
Remember that the APR is an annual rate
Always keep in mind that the APR is an annual rate. Therefore, perhaps you have ever wondered why there is such a significant difference between the APR of the same product at one financial institution and another.
The first reason is, of course, that some proposals are more competitive than others, but also because of the different return terms. Since the APR represents the return or annual interest of two products, this is the main issue when comparing their APRs.
What is the best time to apply for a credit card with 0% APR?
If you are one of the people who keep up with their minimum payments to maintain the introductory offer, you may be able to obtain a 0% APR credit card.
High interest credit card
There are times when it’s difficult to pay off high-interest balances, but you can do a balance transfer with a 0% APR card to ease the burden.
A good option to pay down debt as quickly as possible, ideal during the introductory period.
A balance transfer may be required after a certain period of time has passed after you open an account with some cards.
The fee for balance transfers generally ranges between 3% and 5% of the balance.
If you make a big purchase
The benefit of a credit card with 0% APR comes in handy when you need to pay for a large expense, whether for vacation, a large purchase for your home or an unexpected emergency.
The advantage of using this type of card is that it helps ease the burden of paying an exorbitant amount at once. At the same time, it can save you from taking out a personal loan, which may have high interest rates.
There is nothing better than paying no interest for a certain period of time.
However, such an alternative only works if you pay off the balance before the introductory offer ends. Otherwise, you will have to begin paying interest on the remaining balance in the future.
We advise you to make a payment plan for the card before the introductory offer expires to avoid such situations.
Additionally, if you apply for a credit card, you will also undergo a “hard inquiry” (Hard Inquiry) on your credit report. You may lower your credit score if you have too many inquiries within a short period of time.
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- From the date of account opening, this card offers 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months.
- You will be charged a balance transfer fee of 3% (minimum $5) of the transfer amount if you transfer a balance within 60 days of receiving the card.
- For each transfer amount, you will be charged a 5 percent fee (minimum US$ 5).
- Therefore, after the introductory period, the purchase and transfer APRs have variable rates between 16.49% and 25.24%.
- You will receive an unlimited 1.5% refund on all purchases when you use this card.
- As long as you keep your account open, the rewards don’t expire, and you can redeem them whenever you want.
- Visit the web portal Creditcards.chase.com for more details.
- There are no annual fees on these cards.
Amex EveryDay® The American Express
There is no annual fee on this credit card. On purchases and balance transfers, it also offers an introductory APR of 0% for 15 months.
This must be requested within 60 days of opening the account.
Additionally, there is no balance transfer fee. However, after the introductory period ends, the purchase and balance transfer APRs increase from 14.49% to 25.49%.
As good news, if you use your card at least 20 times on separate purchases within a billing period, you can earn 20% more loyalty points for those purchases ( excluding returns and credits ).
If you spend $1,000 within the first three months of opening your account, you can earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points.
For more information, visit the Americanexpress.com web domain.
Capital One® VentureOne®
It offers rewards without transaction fees outside the country, so if you frequently travel, this card is for you.
For the first 12 months, you’ll get 0% APR on purchases. After that, the APR varies between 14.49% and 24.49%.
Furthermore, if you spend at least $1,000 within the first three months after opening the account, you can earn 20,000 bonus miles.
Last but not least, this card allows you to earn 1.25 miles for every dollar spent on purchases, and it also has no annual fees, nor does it expire.
Visit Capitalone.com for more information about reward miles.
Visit the Creditscards.com web portal where you can find more information about the 0% APR credit cards we describe in this article and other 0% APR credit cards.
What does the APR exclude?
However, even when calculating the APR, certain factors are left out. In the case of credits, for example, certain costs are not taken into account, such as disbursements the client can avoid by using the faculties granted by the contract, expenses paid to third parties or insurance or guarantees (except for some particular types and where the entity imposes a subscription for the grant of the credit).
With the above information, you should have gained a better understanding of what 0% APR is and when to apply for a credit card that has minimum payments to maintain the introductory rate.
If you have any questions, please comment below!!