You know all those times when it looks as though the balance on your credit card account never seems to reduce irrespective of how much you pay a month. When the interest charges eat up most of what you’re paying and if by any chance you miss a payment, you could find you’re being charged late payment fees and penalty rates, which make it even harder to make progress.
When you have a pile of credit card debt, it can feel like you have no power against a large credit card company. The debt excessively weighs on you tremendously to the point you’re unsure what to do. Credit Card Debt Stinks!
But what if you had an option to negotiate with your credit card company? If you have some power you can use to better your situation, no matter how much you owe wouldn’t you grab it? Negotiating credit card debt might sound a little challenging and frightening. But once you understand how it works, it’s an excellent way to take control of your finances and take away some of the financial burdens.
So how can you negotiate with a credit card company?
Now, that will depend on your circumstances. The first step to take is to ask — especially if is something small, such as due date change. You can just call the company and say, “Hello, my paychecks come in on the 15th of every month, so I would love to change my due date to the 20th.”
However, if it is bigger asks — such as the waiving of an annual fee, a significant credit line increase, or other issues — then take these steps.
Have a Plan of Action
Don’t try to negotiate with your credit card company unless you have done the appropriate research and have a valid plan of action. What are you going to say? What are you going to ask for? Know your facts before you approach your creditors. Ensure that your request is valid when asking for a lower interest rate. Chances are you aren’t going to get a 0% interest rate, but any decrease in rate will make it much easier for you to pay off your massive credit card debt. Even a few percentage points lower will allow you to pay off your debt faster than usual.
Any unpractical demands on your part will make it easy for your creditor to say no. Consider your credit history when you are negotiating with your credit card company. The average creditor will not grant huge interest rate reductions for a customer that has a tarnished credit record. You may not get the best interest rate decrease, but it’s important that you take your chances and ask to have your interest rate slashed.
Don’t assume anything before you make an effort. Also, whatever you and your credit card company decide upon, make sure that you get it in writing. If you initiate the process of negotiation with a viable plan and a little research, the negotiations with your credit card company should be very successful.
Speak with a manager.
As soon as you get on the line with a credit card company representative, ask for a supervisor. That credit card company representative can probably unlock your online account when you’ve forgotten a password or enter an address change. What they cannot do is change your repayment plan or reduce your interest rate.
So politely asking for the manager and skip a few minutes of meaningless conversation.
If you’re asking for credit card changes — especially big ones — you may need to be very persistent.
You may get further faster if you have leverage. This works best if you come from the position of a customer in good standing. For instance, look up for competing credit card offers and tell the issuer you’re considering transferring your balance or moving your account. That may be enough to get them to cooperate.
Finally, don’t assume that your credit card company won’t negotiate with you. It is in their interest to make sure that you can pay your bills on time. But if you are unable to pay your monthly payments, your creditors won’t get paid.
Your creditors realize that once you fail on your credit card payments and file for bankruptcy, they may not get any of the money that you owe them, so they’ll want to help you where they can.
But if you negotiate with them, many creditors will want to make it easier for you. Hence it’s a win-win Situation.