How to do a balance transfer with Citi – Forbes Advisor

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Balance transfers are a great way to consolidate bills and pay off debts. As tools that can often save time-saving consumers in debt, balance transfers are particularly useful when transferring a credit balance from a high-interest account to a new account. credit card that offers a low or zero promotional APR for a period of time. Balance transfer cards allow cardholders to pay off their debts without worrying about paying interest.

Citi (partner of Forbes Advisor) has relatively strong card offerings for transferring balances. None of the cards we cover here have annual fees and all offer an introductory APR of 0% for 15-18 months, followed by the card’s standard APR. Cardholders will be charged a fee for each balance transfer and a variable APR will be applied to the remaining balance after the promotional period ends. Before you apply for a new Citi card, make sure the fees and potential interest charges won’t break the bank.

The best Citi balance transfer offers

Citi’s best balance transfer card offers include an introductory APR of 0% and no annual fee. Choose the card that will be the most advantageous financially, that is, the card that will give you the most time to pay off a transferred balance at the lowest rate while charging the lowest fees. Cash back or reward points can also make or break a decision when thinking beyond the low introductory period of APR.

For all Citi cards, balance transfers must be completed within the first four months of account opening to qualify for the introductory offer. Purchases will be subject to interest if the introductory offer does not apply to purchases and balance transfers.

How to do a balance transfer with Citi

Citi makes it easy to apply for a balance transfer for new and current cardholders. New cardholders can note in an app that a balance transfer is desired or they can call the number on the back of the card to start the process after receiving an approval. Current Citi cardholders can log into their accounts to initiate balance transfer transactions. Make sure you have information about the balance you are transferring, such as account numbers, the amount to be transferred, and the name of the creditor.

For new credit card applicants

  1. Complete an online card application to get the best deal.
  2. If the online application allows a balance transfer request, do so and provide any required information about the transfer, such as the account number and the amount to be transferred.
  3. If the online application does not allow balance transfer requests, call the number on the back of the card after approval and request a balance transfer.

For Current Citi Cardholders

  1. Log in to the online account and select “Payments and Transfers” at the top.
  2. Select “Balance Transfers”, then “View Available Balance Transfer Offers”.
  3. Select an offer to start the transfer.
  4. Provide all the information requested to complete the transfer, such as account number, creditor name, and amount to be transferred.
  5. If necessary, call the number on the back of the card to speak to someone directly.

Things to know about balance transfers with Citi in advance

An introductory APR is an enticing offer for anyone looking for a balance transfer. Before applying for a Citi credit card, keep these things in mind:

  • Balance transfers aren’t always a good idea. They are more beneficial if the cardholder is able to repay their debt after transferring it to an interest-free credit card account. If the interest rate after the introductory period is higher than that of the checking account, or if the balance transfer fee is too high, a balance transfer may not be worth it.
  • Balance transfers do not earn rewards.
  • Many credit card offers from Citi have an introductory APR for purchases and balance transfers. However, be sure to check the card details to make sure it offers an introductory rate on purchases and balance transfers if you plan to carry a balance over on new purchases.
  • Current Citi cardholders cannot transfer balances from one Citi card to another.
  • Any balance transfer amount is acceptable as long as it is below the card’s available credit limit. When completed, balance transfers will reduce available credit on the card. Protect your credit by respecting a credit utilization rate of 30%.
  • Citi can take two to three weeks to complete a balance transfer. Remember to continue making payments to the old account until the balance is reflected in the Citi account.
  • If there is a balance left after the introductory period, a variable APR will be applied to the remaining balance. The exact interest rate is determined based on the creditworthiness of the cardholder. The minimum monthly payment may increase accordingly.
  • Any minimum monthly payment assigned by Citi may not be sufficient to fully pay off the balance by the end of the introductory period. Calculate an accurate minimum payment by dividing the total balance by the number of months remaining in the introductory period.

Conclusion

Citi offers several solid options for cardholders looking for a balance transfer card, and some Citi cards even offer great cash rewards. When shopping for a credit card, it’s best to choose a few good options and compare the benefits before applying. Always read the terms and conditions of a card before submitting an application. If a new card’s variable APR for balance transfers is too high, it may not be beneficial to transfer debt to that card. Do the math and learn responsible spending habits to avoid getting into debt again.

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