Not every credit card on the market today is out to provide consumers with great rewards, because not every card customer can make the most of those rewards. Credit cards are just tools, and depending on who is wielding them, they could have a positive or a negative effect on that person’s finances. Some people just use credit cards to habitually buy what they can’t afford. For them, a great rewards credit card might actually be counterproductive.
A good example would be someone who has made mistakes with credit cards in the past and is now looking for some way to get out of the debt hole. Rather than trying to rack up rewards with spending, this individual would be better off finding a low-interest card or a card with an excellent introductory APR on balance transfers that will allow him to save money while reducing his debt.
Issuers design some cards for people looking to save money on costly interest payments. Slate from Chase can help new applicants with good or excellent credit save with a $0 introductory balance transfer fee, a 0% introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, and a $0 annual fee. (Plus, they receive their monthly FICO® score for free.) After the 15-month introductory period, the variable APR will be 13.24% to 23.24%.
Notably, Chase Slate does what the offer says: You can transfer a balance to the card with a $0 introductory balance transfer fee if you do the transfer within the first 60 days your account is open. After the 60 days, balance transfers are assessed a fee of $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. Combined with the 0% introductory APR period of 15 months for purchases and balance transfers, this is a card that will likely save you money if you carry a balance and are committed to paying it down during that period. The Slate® from Chase card lets you add an additional card user to your account at no extra cost.
Chase Slate includes a program that’s meant to help cardholders analyze and pay down their debt. The program is called “Blueprint,” and it allows cardholders to pick which purchases to pay off first. With Blueprint, customers have the option of designing their own plan:
- Full Pay. Avoid paying interest by paying off full categories of your choice. Chase will separate all of your purchases into different categories.
- Split. Inform Chase how much you want to pay and to what purchases you would like it applied.
- Finish It. Set up a goal and a timeline and Chase will calculate your monthly payment schedule for you.
- Track It. Check out your spending trends and see where you stand with any goals you’ve set up.
It seems like a lot of work, and most people will probably prefer to just send a payment in to their credit card company and have it apply to the highest APR balance regardless of what the original purchase was. Psychologically, however, there is value in understanding exactly when a particular purchase has been paid off. That theory has been used to great effect by Dave Ramsey with the Debt Snowball, and this is sort of a similar application.
Another feature worth mentioning is Chase Slate offers Patented Fraud Protection and zero liability on unauthorized purchases. Other than that, that’s about all there is to the Slate from Chase card. For consumers looking for a great introductory rate with features to help you keep your debt in check, this card fits the bill. Remember to keep in mind that the best offer is given to excellent-credit applicants. If you want more information or if you are interested in applying, visit this page to learn more about Chase Slate.
Updated August 19, 2016 and originally published February 8, 2012. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.