Yes, the Best Buy® Credit Card has an introductory APR of 0% - 12.99% for 12 - 48 months on certain purchases. It's important to pay off the entire balance before the promotional rate expires, though, because the regular APR will apply retroactively from the purchase date if any balance remains after the 0% APR period ends. This is called deferred interest, and it can be quite costly.
Keep in mind that even though you don't pay interest during 0% APR periods, you still must make timely minimum payments each month. You should also consider paying more than the minimum, so that the deferred interest never kicks in. For help planning your payments, try out WalletHub's Credit Card Calculator.
When a 0% APR period ends, the credit card’s regular APR will kick in. That rate will apply to any unpaid balance remaining on the credit card as well as any new purchases made from that point on. The regular APR that applies when a 0% APR period expires tends to be very high, so it’s best not to leave much of a balance for it to affect.… read full answer
The only exception to this rule is a 0% interest period with a feature called deferred interest. General-purpose 0% credit cards don’t have it, but some store credit cards do. This isn’t a true 0% APR deal because the interest is still accruing while it’s “deferred,” and it will apply if you don’t pay your balance on schedule. So when the 0% APR ends on a deferred interest financing offer, you’ll be charged interest on the original purchase amount, as accrued from the purchase date, if you have even $1 of your original balance left to pay. Your deferred interest could also return prematurely if you make a late payment, and it’ll likely be a lot more expensive than a late fee. That’s why it’s very important to make on-time payments on deferred interest credit cards, and to pay off the balance before a deferred interest period is over.
Even though a credit card with a true 0% APR period won’t retroactively charge interest on purchases, be smart with these cards. Interest will apply to any balance remaining when the 0% period ends, so plan out your payments to ensure there’s little left at that point. Using a credit card payoff calculator can be a big help.
The longest 0% APR credit card is the Wells Fargo Reflect℠ Card as it offers an introductory purchase APR of 0% for up to 21 months from account opening. That rate is coupled with a balance transfer intro APR of 0% for up to 21 months from account opening on qualifying balance transfers – subject to a balance transfer fee: 3% intro for 120 days, then up to 5% (min $5). Once the introductory periods are over, remaining balances are subject to a regular APR of 14.49% - 26.49% Variable. Given its $0 annual fee, the Wells Fargo Reflect card makes for a great option both for financing larger purchases and transferring pre-existing debt. There are several other options with long 0% intro APRs that are worth your consideration.… read full answer
0% for 18 months – subject to a balance transfer fee: 5% (min $5)
15.24% - 25.24% (V)
These cards benefit from $0 annual fees and require good credit or better (a credit score of 700+) for good odds of approval. None of these cards offer rewards, but they’re meant for financing rather than regular spending. You can always adopt the island approach and use a different rewards card for purchases you’ll pay in full each month. All of these cards also require good or excellent credit.
It’s important to note that some store cards may offer 0% interest for longer than 21 months, but they use deferred interest. That is, you earn interest on your balance during the 0% period but don’t have to pay that interest if and only if you bring your balance to $0 before the 0% period ends. The JCPenney Credit Card is one example, offering 18 - 48 months of deferred interest. But those cards are best avoided, because not paying your balance in full by the end of the intro period allows for a high APR to retroactively apply to your entire original purchase amount – as if the low intro rate never existed.
You can potentially extend a 0% APR on a credit card by calling the credit card company and asking them if they can extend the promotion. Success could depend on which credit card company it is, your relationship with them, your current account balance, and other factors that the credit card company won’t publicly disclose. There is no exact science to getting an extension on a 0% APR period, and it’s unlikely to work. So it’s important to remember that your mileage may vary.… read full answer
How card issuers determine who gets a 0% APR extension
Think about it from the card issuer’s perspective. Promotional 0% APR periods aren’t a product of a card issuer’s kindness - they’re business decisions. And granting a 0% APR extension is also a business decision.
The current balance on your credit card may play a part in whether or not you’ll receive a 0% APR extension after you ask. If you have been racking up a big balance over the course of a long 0% interest period and you want more time to pay off the debt with no interest, you’re unlikely to fit the criteria for an extension. The card issuer stands to make more money from your high balance by charging interest. That’s why card issuers offer 0% APR periods in the first place.
On the other hand, if your balance is $0 when you call for an extension, you’re more likely to get one. That’s because the issuer will earn more in processing fees from your future purchases than they would by charging you interest on a $0 balance. Plus, the card issuer has another chance that you’ll spend more than you can afford to pay off before the end of the zero-interest period.
Threatening to close your account
Some users in forums online have had success with threatening to cancel their credit card unless the 0% APR promotion is extended. This could be a good idea, because you may get sent to a retention representative who is able to offer an extension or some other promotion.
However, other reports suggest that if your account doesn’t meet certain criteria, the card issuer may simply take your threat as an order to close your account, and send you a bill for the remaining balance on your card. If your account is closed, your credit score could take a hit, and you’ll still owe any balance on the card plus the interest that accrues while you pay it off. This is clearly a risk, so it’s important to weigh out other options before you call with a threat.
Other options for extending a 0% APR period
Consider actually taking your business elsewhere. There are lots of credit card companies out there, and many have 0% APR periods for purchases and balance transfers. Some don’t even have balance transfer fees. If you have a balance on your credit card and your credit is good, consider applying for a balance transfer credit card with a 0% interest period and no transfer fee.
Keep in mind, however, that 0% APR offers won’t always be readily available, and may be less available in an economic downturn, for example. So it’s a risky move to rely on this as a future strategy.
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