A Credit Card that Rewards Those Who Carry a Balance?

When I first read about the new card being offered by Bank of America, I figured that there was no way a a bank would reward someone who didn’t pay their full balance every month.  I was wrong!  The BankAmericard Better Balance Rewards advertises that they will pay you $25 dollars in cash rewards for each calendar quarter when you pay more than your monthly minimum and you pay that bill on time.  You have to make sure you have a payment due each month of the quarter, because a zero balance or a credit balance does not qualify for the reward.  This could add up to a $100 dollars a year if you earn the reward each quarter.  Another perk this cards adds is if you have a checking or savings accounts with Bank of America, you get an extra $5 per calendar quarter, so instead of $25 a month, you increase your rewards to $30 a month.  It is also worthwhile to note that there is no annual fee with this card and the interest rate is zero percent for the first 12 months on new purchases and balance transfers made within the first 60 days.  

But is this card all it’s cracked up to be or are there huge pitfalls that could get you into trouble?  Many consumer experts seem to really like this card.  John Ulzheimer, president of consumer education at Smartcredit.com says, “I actually really like this card and I don’t say that about a lot of credit cards.” (quote pulled from the article linked below). The main reason consumer watchers seem to like this card is because it provides incentive to people to start paying off their balance as opposed to increasing their spending.  The bank is putting forward free money, and $25 dollar a quarter can really start to add up over time.  Despite all of these positives in a card, you do have to watch out for a few things.  Although your interest rate is zero percent for the first 12 months, after the first 12 months is up, the APR will jump to 11.99%-21.99% depending on your “creditworthiness” at the time of opening the account and the current market.  Also, the penalties for a late fee are pretty steep: a $35 dollar change and the zero percent interest period is over. 

Just like with any card, before you decide to apply for a BankAmericard Rewards Card, always do your research! If you aren’t the type who will pay more than the minimum monthly balance or keep your spending down, this probably isn’t the card for you.  For more information on the card visit the Bank of America website.  The terms and conditions of the card aren’t very long and they’re actually readable! You can find all of this information on the bank’s site: https://www.bankofamerica.com/credit-cards/products/better-balance-rewards.go.  Also, if you’re looking to see what others are saying about the card, here’s an interesting link: http://www.nbcnews.com/business/reward-credit-card-those-who-carry-balance-1B9063074

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