How Did You Get Your Credit Card's Interest Rate Lowered??

Updated on July 28, 2010
K.A. asks from Phoenix, AZ
13 answers

Hi all! I have a credit card which I no longer use but am still in the process of paying off. I am currently making double payments each month but my interest rate is 20.9%... AHH!! I called the credit card company and asked if it would be possible to have my APR lowered... I was praised for my account being in great shape and being proactive but was denied my request, being told that due to the economy there is nothing they can do for me at this time. So, I asked what I could do in order to be eligible for a lowered interest rate... the representative I spoke to basically just repeated that my account is in great shape and I am doing a great job of being proactive and that I should call back at a later time. This was obviously not the answer I was looking for, so here I am to ask you... were you ever successful at getting your interest rate lowered and how did you do it??

Thanks a bunch!!

LOL my card is a Capital One card but it's been open since 2007 so not a new card by any means... and just to be more specific I double my minimum payment each month.

Thanks so far for all of the responses! I am looking forward to more!! :)

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from San Francisco on

You've got some great responses. I will add that you should call back and keep escalating until you get to someone that will help. They are out there. Escalate to a supervisor or manager or ask for a retention department. They are stubborn but I do know someone that went 60/90 days delinquent on 2 capital 1 cards and they were finally able to get someone to drop them to 0%, zero. They decided getting paid the balance was better than getting nothing at all. If that doesn't work apply somewhere else and get out of capital one. Try a local credit union. Good luck.

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answers from San Francisco on

If they won't lower your rate, shop for a different card and transfer your current balance over to the new card with the low rate. You'll have to pay a one time fee to transfer but it's better than paying 20% on your debt for months. Screw them for blaming the economy for not lowering your rate. You're getting bilked.

I have five different cards with varying aprs. They all have a 0 balance except our main card that we charge everything on. When I used to carry a balance, right after I bought a used car, (it was about 6k and I charged the whole thing intending to pay it off in about six months), I used a 0% promotional APR check I got from one of my credit cards to pay for it.

So now I had 6k sitting on a card at 0% for six months and of course, things came up, unexpected expenses so my projected pay off got pushed back a couple of months. After the six months were over and my promotional period ended I had about 2500 left on the card. The APR jacked itself up to about 29% and I freaked.

So I transfered the balance to a card with a 9% apr that I hadn't used in a few years by going to the bank website and checking out their offers for balance transfers.

What's funny was as soon as I moved my profitable debt away from that once card company to another, they lowered my apr a bit and sent me transfer checks to try and get me to bring the debt back "home".

Long story short. Don't be married to one credit card. Play them against each other to get yourself the best deals. Find another card with a better rate and move your debt there. But I will caution you to READ THE FINE PRINT!! Some companies charge crazy amounts for transfer fees. Find out what those charges are before you take the deal. Some want 2% of the total debt in fees with up to a max of $50 and some cards will charge you 5% of the total debt with NO MAX which means, depending on how much debt you have, the fees could be more detrimental than keeping the old high apr until the debt is paid off.

The only way I've been able to get a credit card company to lower my rate was to threaten to close the account, or by transferring my balance away and having them come chase me down with attractive rates to get my debt back.

Since you don't use the card anymore already, they can see that and they know the only way they are going to make cash off you is by keeping your APR high. When you regularly use a card they get money each and every time you swipe and are more likely to lower your APR since you're already providing them income.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

We played the whole transfer to lower rates game (usually temporary rates) and eventually got tired of chasing our tails. We called and threatened to transfer or stop paying if they didn't close our account and switch us to a lowered fixed rate until paid off. They agreed. We sat down and revamped our expenses (starting with moving to a less expensive home), stopped using credit cards, and living more frugally. We are now cc free and not needing them like they make you believe you do. It's nice to go on vacation and not come home with a big cc bill waiting for you.



answers from Rockford on

I had the same issue with capital one. They are a pain in the you know what. We have had the card for years, always been active users, always pay more than minimum and have never been late once. My husband even had an old delinquency go off his credit report, so his credit is really good right now, but they told us they could not lower the rate at this time. A few days later we had a call from them asking us about signing up for some thing or another. I told them quite clearly that I am not interested in expanding our relationship given the fact that they will not give an inch on lowering the interest rate of an excellent and loyal customer - then hung up.



answers from Kansas City on

ours told us we dont make enough purchases to qualify for a lower interest rate. Very sucky. I hope some other mommies have some ideas I could use too!



answers from Denver on

Switch to a different card...I just opened a Capitol One account: free transfers, 0% interest for 6 months on balance transfers and the interest rate was 1/2 my Citi card.

Citibank told me the same thing, "gee we love you, but we can't do a thing because of the 'economy'" Grrrr.



answers from Tucson on

What we did was transfer the card balance of one card to another with a lower interest rate (we may have gotten lucky because our bank was offering a promotional rate at that time) but it allowed us to pay off the balance quicker and we closed the other card. I don't know what is available now or what popular opinion might be on this one but that worked for us! Good luck!


answers from Dallas on it worked for me!

one of the things I have learned is that if you are paying your bill, they are not going to make it any easier for you to pay your bill, (or in other words they wont lower the rate). reasoning is, that if you pay off your bills sooner they make less money. To lower your rate you would have to do a balance transfer, or threaten to, to get a lower rate. I did have it work for me one time by calling the CC company and asking them for my pay off amount, and told them I was planning on transferring my balance, they lowered mine on the spot.



answers from Chicago on

Capital One is extremely stubborn. We opened the card with a fixed rate offer. A few years later they denied ever existed that way. They have raised the rate without notice also. My husband had to write them a letter demanding they lower the rate or the card would be cut up and never used again. They refuse to budge. Once we settle a court case, that is the first thing to go.
Try to write them a letter, maybe you will get somewhere.



answers from Austin on

I would like to know that myself. I have a credit card which was thru WaMu & had a 14% interest rate...awesome right? Well it was great til Chase took over WaMu & the first thing they did was raise my interest to 27% then not even a month later raised it again to...wait for it...29.4% !! Seriously??? I had never been late, always paid above the minimum, sometimes WAY above the minium and my credit score was fine but yet they seem to think it's okay to do this to us. Now, I can accept raising rates a bit due to the economy but it's improving so IMO they should accomodate you. Try threatening to close your account & see if it'll get you anwhere. Sometimes threatening in that way works b/c they don't wanna lose you as a client. I'm closing mine as soon as it's paid off if they don't lower my rate. Sorry I couldn't give you more ideas. Good luck!



answers from Flagstaff on

Hi, if you aren't planning on moving or buying a vehicle you can call talk to the hardship dept. Cancel the card on the terms for a lower rate. they'll probably tell you it'll show up as a negative on your credit report,one for closing the card and two for the lower rate but 'in this economy" who cares your current and paying. If you're doing the Dave Ramsey going gazelle you won't need credit cards ever again 8 >).
good luck



answers from Houston on

Call every day. As Dave Ramsey says, make it your part time job. Sometimes it just takes getting the right person on the phone. If they won't help you, ask them to connect you to someone who can. You can also make thinly veiled allusions to the possibility that you may have some difficulty making payments in the it is VERY important that you get them paid off.

It can work--I actually negotiated with American Express to give me ZERO interest for six months...and then it only went to 14% but my balance was MUCH lower at that point.



answers from New York on

Mine was lowered automatically due to a good credit rating. My first advice would be to do exactly what you did. You could also try writing a letter. You can wait a month or two and try again.

This may sound counter productive, but rather than paying cash, use the card for one or two small purchases (put the cash aside and write a check immediatly to the credit card company). Then next month when you call again, they'll see your still using the card and you can threaten to close the account. If it's not an "active" account threatening to close won't make a difference. Also, if you don't get a straight answer, ask to speak to a supervisor.

You said you make double payments. Does that mean your making 2 payments a month? Or does that mean your doubling the minimum payment due? If you send in 2 payments a month (dividing your current payment by 2), and/or send in your payment a week before the due date, over time you can save quite a bit.

Do you have another credit card? If yes, call the other card and tell them you're interested in balance transfer checks and can they help you? You can then use the check to pay off the 20.9% card. That's if they'll offer you a lower rate.

Just in case your not familar, a balance transfer check will allow you to write a check to whomever you choose (except on of their companies). There's almost always a fee, 2% to 5% of the total. Then you'll also be charged interest from the day the transaction is posted to your account (there's no grace period). The interest rate is usually low for 6 months to a year, and then it jumps back up. It's not an option for everyone, but it may work for you.

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