How To Get 0% APR Credit Cards
0% credit cards aren't as easy to get as they were in times past, but you can still find offers for no APR credit cards if you know where to look and you have very good credit. Prior to the 2009 CARD Act, many banks would offer 0% on balance transfers and purchases for the first six months, and then sock you with high interest rates going forward. Because of changes in the way cards are marketed, rules for the length of time that an interest rate may remain current, and a 45 day notice of any changes, many no-interest promotions have gone by the wayside. Nonetheless, as a consumer with good credit you may still be able to beat banks at their own game and carry no interest charges on revolving cards.
The classic "no interest" card would be something along the lines of American Express, where you have to pay the balance every month. While AMEX does have some rotating balance options, this is still the #1 way to avoid interest, although it could be said that this can be done with just about any other offer out there. Naturally AMEX often has an annual fee and therefore the use of the card is not free, but at least you aren't giving a percentage of your income to the banking industry.
Banks and mail offers are not the only places you can borrow with no interest for a specific period of time. Appliance stores, home improvement centers, and service companies may offer no interest on revolving accounts. You just need to do some comparison shopping for the item and the terms and conditions on the extended monies in order to make sure that (1) the product isn't so overpriced that the APR savings is negated, and (2) the account isn't going to smack you with retroactive charges if you don't pay off the entire balance in full before the due date. Many "same as cash" offers carry provisions that they will hit you with charges in arrears, for amounts like 25% on all the payments, and this could equal hundreds of dollars.
Carry a balance and still pay no interest
To carry a balance month-to-month and pay no interest you have to do a little juggling. For the purposes of this monograph we will examine the academic aspects of the excercise regardless of the fact that if you are this good with money you probably won't be using credit cards very often at all. Many companies have limited time offers, or will provide 0% APR for transfers, so if you are able to open up new accounts and transfer old balances to new cards every few months, you can essentially carry no interest for an extended period of time. As we said, however, a person with this level of skill would likely avoid the use of credit cards to do this. Why? For one, many offers bury little landmines and penalties in the fine print, so if a payment was late (which can happen owing to the way bills are sent out) the interest rate would go up, and also render you ineligible for future offers. In olden days, when savings accounts and certificate of deposit returns were a lot higher, some affluent individuals would take cash advances and place them in such instruments and then repay the loan later, just to make a few hundred dollars on the float. Today, thanks to the Federal Reserve's Monopoly Money printing program and quantitative easing, (the type of stuff we cry about when China does it) there is little incentive to use FDIC-rated dollar storage that can't even match the inflation rate. Also, it is illegal to borrow money and invest in stocks (See:1929 Stock Market Crash) so you really don't even have a good excuse to take cash advances because the whole credit card game is a black hole that not even Stephen Hawking can get you out of.