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In recent years, credit card customers have been slapped with higher annual percentage rates on their cards – even if they have stayed current on their payments and under their credit limits. Some of these base rates have increased even more since 2009’s credit card reform legislation. So outside of switching cards, what can a customer do about it?
Call your credit card company and see about lowering your rate!
It’s not as crazy as it sounds. If you have good credit, your credit card issuer will want to keep you as a customer and not lose your business to a competitor (many of whom have probably been flooding your mailbox with credit card offers). And a recent study revealed that about two out of every three customers who asked for a lower rate had their requessts granted.
Here’s how to go about lowering your rate:
- Browse recent credit card offers for new customers (Our Best Credit Cards 2010 page is a good place to start) and come up with a “target” rate you can ask for.
- Call your credit card company. Tell them you’ve been getting offers from other credit card issuers with lower rates.
- Be polite, but firm. Don’t let the representative sidetrack you from your goal.
- Be specific. Mention what you’re paying now and what you want your target rate to be.
- If you don’t get the response you want, ask for a supervisor and try again.
- If you still cannot get your APR lowered, consider taking one of those other offers.