4th April 2013 - 5 min read
Credit cards provide consumers with a handy way to pay for goods and services without forking out physical cash. Such a convenience has its down side.
Sometimes it’s that little tempting treat you bought – or two, or three, or 25 – or, it could have been that hospital bill that couldn’t wait. Either way, stacking up large amounts of credit card debt is very possible and a very real problem for many Malaysians.
But it does not have to be the ominous situation it’s cracked up to be. There are effective ways to clearing your debt and a balance transfer is one of the best.
Demystifying the Balance Transfer
If you haven’t already heard of a balance transfer, it is basically the transferring of the remaining amount owed on your credit card onto a new credit card from another issuer.
On the face of it, it doesn’t sound too helpful. Why transfer your debt from one place to another? Well, because you can save hundreds to thousands of ringgit on interest when you do.
Almost every bank has a balance transfer programme that offers 0% interest for a certain amount of time. It’s the race to secure your business and to do so, credit card issuers are willing to slash your interest rates for a couple of months in order to gain your loyalty.
It’s a win-win situation if you, excuse the pun, play your cards right.
Some Notable Notes
Before you rush off to apply for one, here are some important things to note:
Hot off the Presses
Here are some new balance transfer promotions from your friendly neighbourhood credit card issuers.
BSN offers a tenure from as low as 3 months with a minimum transfer of RM500 at an interest rate of 0.30% per month up to 36months with a minimum transfer of RM2000 and a rate of 0.375%. If you take just 6 months, its 0% interest.
The promotion is valid only until 30 April 2013. Get more info and apply here.
HLB offers four different plans to suit your needs also beginning at a 3 month tenure to 12 months with an increasing interest rate from 0.40% per month to 1% per month for 12 months.
Promotion ends 30 June 2013. Read more and apply here.
CIMB is offering 0% interest for 6 months until 31 December 2013. That’s not all, for existing CIMB Cardmembers, there are 3 plans you can opt for to clear your balance without transferring to another issuer! It’s set at 10% for 12 months, 11% for 18 months and 12% for 24 months.
Minimum transfer amount is RM1000. For added info and application, click here.
The balance transfer deal from HSBC starts with an initial 3% interest for the first month and 0% for the next 5 months. That technically works out to 0.5% per month – similar to Maybank.
Minimum transfer amount is RM1000. For more information and to apply, click here.
There are options offered by Public Bank for their balance transfer. It’s 0% for 6mths with a minimum RM3000 transfer, 2% for 12 months with a minimum RM1000 transfer and 5% for 24 months with a minimum RM3000 transfer. These rates are charged only one time.
Click for more information and to apply, click here.
With a minimum RM1000 transfer across their three plans, RHB offers 12, 18 and 24 months at rates of 7.30%, 8.67% and 8.41% per annum. Although, do note there is an extra initial interest rate of 4%, 7% and 9% respectively.
The plans are available only until 30 June 2013. For all the glorious terms and to apply, click here.
Maybank has designed 5 different plans to suit your needs. Ranging from 6 to 36 months, the interest rate flunctuates at 0.5% at 6 months to 0% at 12 months and 0.413% at 36 months.
For terms, terms and a spot of application, click here.
If you’d like to see a full list of issuers in a nifty comparison chart format as well as a longer FAQ article, check out our previous posting on balance transfers.
Subscribe to our exclusive weekly newsletter and we’ll bring you the week’s highlights of financial news, expert tips, guides, and the latest credit card and e-wallet deals.
Stay tuned for what’s to come next in the personal finance world