The credit card market is as competitive as I've ever seen it in my 20+ years of monitoring the industry. Companies are so eager to take market share from competitors and gain new customers that they are offering 0% balance transfer offers for up to 18 months and allowing customers to deposit the transfer checks directly into their bank accounts (up to the card's available credit line less $100 - 200). Many are waiving or not imposing any transfer fees for new card applicants...and those that are imposing fees are capping them at $50 - 75.
So, you don't even need to have a balance on a credit card to be able to apply for a new card and transfer nearly its full credit line to your existing credit card or bank account. You can then put the money in a risk free account for the 18-month holding period and earn about 3% in the current interest rate environment. You will be required to repay 2 to 3% of the principal each month - so you would need to make sure that that amount of cash was unencumbered to meet minimum debt service requirements.
Who would have imagined that credit card companies would get into the business of making unsecured 0% 18-month loans without any fees?
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0% APR, 18-month, fee-free credit card loans
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