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A company called Elan Financial Services created this product – and banks can white label the product. Customer service on the card would be handled by Elan – not your local bank.
We don’t like the way this product works.
First, there is a $50 annual fee.
You earn 1 point for every $1 you spend. At the end of every month, you receive a 50% bonus, which means you have earned 1.5 points.
There is a bonus offer of $50 after you make your first purchase.
Every 100 points is $1 of cash back. Redemption starts at 2,500 points for $25 of cash back. You can also redeem your points for travel (if you book through their travel agent). That starts at 25,000 points for $325 of value.
So – this is basically a 1.5% cash back card, with a $50 annual fee. There are likely better options out there.
They also have a balance transfer offer. It is only 6 months – and they have a 3% fee. That is terrible value (for the same fee, you can get up to 18 months at 0% on other cards).
This is relatively simple card to understand. Unfortunately, the reward rate is not very exciting.
You earn 1 point for every $1 you spend. Every month you receive a 25% bonus, which means, in effect, you earn 1.25 points for every dollar you spend.
There is no annual fee, and no cap to the points that you can earn.
There is a sign-on bonus: you receive 2,500 points ($25) with your first purchase. In addition, there is a 0% promo interest rate on purchases for the first 6 months. There are better purchase rates out there (up to 12-15 months).
You redeem those points for cash back. Every 100 points gets you $1 of cash back. The minimum redemption amount is 2,500 points for $25 of cash back.
So, in effect, you receive a 1.25% cash back card. You can do better.
Believe it or not, banks will actually compete for your debt. Nick gives three easy steps for utilizing a balance transfer to save you thousands.
A balance transfer is a bonus offer for people with credit card debt to move it from Bank A to Bank B. Why does a bank want your debt? Because the debt is amazingly profitable for them ($60 billion was generated from interest last year alone.) Credit card companies will offer you a 0% interest rate for 18 months on the hope that you’ll spend on the card, miss a payment, or not transfer the remaining balance at the end of the promotional period – all of which will result in high interest charges. The good news: by following a few simple rules, a balance transfer card is the single best tool to help you become debt-free.
Never use a credit card at an ATM.
Cash advances on credit cards are incredibly expensive.
Always pay on time.
Set up a recurring payment. Late payments can result in loss of the offer and hurt your credit score.
Get that transfer done within 60 days.
On most cards, offers are only valid if you complete the transfer within the first 60 days.
Don’t spend on the card.
Unless the 0% offer extends to purchases, you will be charged interest on your spending. So do the balance transfer, and keep the card out of your wallet.
Don’t try to transfer debt between two cards of the same bank.
0% balance transfers are only valid when transferring from one bank to another.
Have a plan for the end of the promotional period.
One month before your rate expires, look for another offer because when the 0% period expires, the interest rate will rise significantly.