A few months ago, we spoke about how useful credit cards can be in terms of paying for dental procedures. Whether you didn’t have dental insurance or were interested in an elective procedure not covered by your plan, the abundance of 0% interest credit card offers on the market made it possible to save a great deal on what is unfortunately sure to be a pricey trip to the dentist’s office. While this certainly hasn’t changed, the particular credit cards you’ll want to consider have. So, with that being said, here’s an update for all of you out there who either haven’t scheduled a dental appointment or are still being weighed down by debt from a procedure you’ve already undergone.
Got an Upcoming Procedure?
This is an instance where you can finally squeeze a bit of lemonade out of the giant lemon that was the Great Recession. Given that so many people saw their credit scores fall during this time, and many credit card companies felt their risky underwriting practices come back to bite them in the you-know-what, competition among the major credit card issuers has drastically increased for the most stable consumers. Minimizing risk is the name of the game for these companies, and they are using 0% interest rates to lure people who still have good or excellent credit scores.
Not only are there more 0% offers available these days than there once were, but these introductory interest rates are being offered for particularly long periods of time. Paying for a dental procedure with one—which should be allowed by most dentists—would therefore give you at least a few months to pay down your balance before interest sets in. So, without further ado, the credit cards with the best rates for new purchases are:
- Citi Simplicity Card: 0% on purchases for 21 months; MasterCard network
- Citi Dividend World MasterCard: 0% on purchases for 15 months + $100 initial bonus; MasterCard network
Now, as alluded to earlier, both of these cards are for people with good or excellent credit. If you want a credit card for average credit that can help you save on upcoming dental work, check out the Capital One No Hassle Cash Rewards Credit Card. This card offers 0% on purchases for around 10 months, though it also has a $39 annual fee, unlike the aforementioned cards, which don’t have annual fees at all.
Need Help Paying Off Dental Debt?
If you have a balance remaining from a previous dental procedure, you’re not necessarily resigned to continue having to pay interest on it because there are also a number of attractive balance transfer credit cards currently on the market. Keep in mind that some credit card companies will only allow you to transfer credit card debt, so make sure you ask before applying for one of the following cards if your debt is from a medical loan:
- Citi Platinum Select Credit Card: 0% on transfers for 21 months; 3% balance transfer fee; MasterCard network
- Discover More Card: 0% on transfers for 18 months; 3% balance transfer fee; Discover network
- Slate from Chase: 0% on transfers for 6-12 months, based on credit worthiness; no balance transfer fee; Visa network
Again, these cards are targeted to people with excellent credit. Unfortunately, there aren’t any credit cards for fair credit that currently offer 0% on balance transfers.
If you end up opening any of these cards, it is important that you pay down the vast majority of your balance before any introductory rate ends. High regular interest rates take effect upon this occurring, and allowing them to apply to a large amount of money would certainly defeat the purpose of getting your card. So, use a credit card payoff calculator. In addition, before you apply for a card, make sure to ask your dentist what types of credit cards he or she accepts, as not everyone will take Discover and American Express. After all, you don’t want to delay being able to see pearly whites rather than dollar signs when you open your mouth!
This guest post comes from Odysseas Papadimitriou of the credit card comparison website Card Hub.