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Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

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Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

I have $15,000 in loans left. I want to pay it off, in a 0% interest way. Thing is, GreatLakes doesn't take credit cards. So I'm looking into a large amount of Cash Advance, and then transferring that Cash Advance to another credit card, with a 0% balance transfer fee (There's plenty of offers out there for this)

 

Any advice? I can also pay with a check, and  I've looked into a Balance Transfer Check, but they don't have an account number or routing number for me to input online (Both of which are needed)

 

I'm determined to pay off these loans next year, and I can do it if I'm not paying interest.

Message 1 of 11
10 REPLIES 10
Super Contributor

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.


@kaivorth wrote:

I have $15,000 in loans left. I want to pay it off, in a 0% interest way. Thing is, GreatLakes doesn't take credit cards. So I'm looking into a large amount of Cash Advance, and then transferring that Cash Advance to another credit card, with a 0% balance transfer fee (There's plenty of offers out there for this)

 

Any advice? I can also pay with a check, and  I've looked into a Balance Transfer Check, but they don't have an account number or routing number for me to input online (Both of which are needed)

 

I'm determined to pay off these loans next year, and I can do it if I'm not paying interest.


1. A balance transfer from a loan doesn't need a routing number it needs the loan account number along with the payment name and address.

 

2. Cash advances are hugely expensive in most cases due to the cash advance fee + excessive interest rate; you would probably need a good credit union card or the Barclays Ring card, or something similar.

 

3. Maybe you should just pay them down directly. Student loans usually don't have high interest.


7/1/18: FICO8 EQ 749 TU 783 EX 746 Total revolving limits 713500 (592500 reporting)
Message 2 of 11
Frequent Contributor

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.


@kaivorth wrote:

I have $15,000 in loans left. I want to pay it off, in a 0% interest way. Thing is, GreatLakes doesn't take credit cards. So I'm looking into a large amount of Cash Advance, and then transferring that Cash Advance to another credit card, with a 0% balance transfer fee (There's plenty of offers out there for this)

 

Any advice? I can also pay with a check, and  I've looked into a Balance Transfer Check, but they don't have an account number or routing number for me to input online (Both of which are needed)

 

I'm determined to pay off these loans next year, and I can do it if I'm not paying interest.


I think you may be conflating Cash Advances and Balance Transfers.  They are two VERY different things.

 

You plan is sound, IMO if you stick with BTs and know you can pay off the entire amount before the 0% offer runs out.  Using a Cash advance is a bad idea.

 

Most lenders will issue you a Balance Transfer check which you can then write directly to your SL company or to yourself, depositing it into a bank account, then paying the SLs.

 

Message 3 of 11
Valued Member

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

I'd highly recommend actually setting up the amortization table. I would find it highly unlikely that you would have an interest rate high enough that you would actually save money doing this.

 

Remember, you pay the balance transfer fee on the ENTIRE balance--loan APRs are only paid on the REMAINING balance. I'd ballpark the breakeven point for loan interest as 1.8x-2x of the balance transfer fee. 

 

For example, if you pay a 4% fee, and your loan has a 7% interest rate, you actually LOSE $25. Obviously, if your loan rate is lower, the fee higher, or if you can pay more earlier, this can be even more signifcant.

 Balance $        15,000  
 BT Fee4%  
 Interest Rate7%  
     
 PaymentInterestPrincipalBalance
1($1,297.90)($87.50)$1,210.40 $ 13,790
2($1,297.90)($80.44)$1,217.46 $ 12,572
3($1,297.90)($73.34)$1,224.56 $ 11,348
4($1,297.90)($66.19)$1,231.71 $ 10,116
5($1,297.90)($59.01)$1,238.89 $   8,877
6($1,297.90)($51.78)$1,246.12 $   7,631
7($1,297.90)($44.51)$1,253.39 $   6,377
8($1,297.90)($37.20)$1,260.70 $   5,117
9($1,297.90)($29.85)$1,268.05 $   3,849
10($1,297.90)($22.45)$1,275.45 $   2,573
11($1,297.90)($15.01)$1,282.89 $  1,290
12($1,297.90)($7.53)$1,290.37 $          0
Sum($15,574.81)($574.81)$15,000.00 
BT Cost $         15,600   
Wells Fargo (8/13, $1.5k -> $2.5k -> $4k) | Freedom (8/15, $2.5k) | Amex BCP (11/15, $2k -> $6k -> $18k -> $34k ) | Citi DC (11/15, $1.2k -> $2.7k > $4.1k) | Discover IT (1/16, $5.5k -> $6.5k > $8k -> $9k) | CSP (2/16, $5k -> $6k) | CSR (1/17, $20k)
Message 4 of 11
Frequent Contributor

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

@RentSeeking

 

Is there somewhere online that makes it easy for math idiots such as myself to generate such a table?

Message 5 of 11
Valued Member

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.


@Aahz wrote:

@RentSeeking

 

Is there somewhere online that makes it easy for math idiots such as myself to generate such a table?


Excel is actually set up to do all of the heavy lifting for you with the PPMT, IPMT, and PMT functions. This guide does a very good job walking through the set-up. 

 

 

EDIT: I'll note that one limitation of this method is that the PMT functions assume equal payments--accounting for prepayment is trickier, but seeing the total amount of interest paid in the equal-payment schedule gives a good place to start estimating (and is usually close enough for me). 

Wells Fargo (8/13, $1.5k -> $2.5k -> $4k) | Freedom (8/15, $2.5k) | Amex BCP (11/15, $2k -> $6k -> $18k -> $34k ) | Citi DC (11/15, $1.2k -> $2.7k > $4.1k) | Discover IT (1/16, $5.5k -> $6.5k > $8k -> $9k) | CSP (2/16, $5k -> $6k) | CSR (1/17, $20k)
Message 6 of 11
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.


@RentSeeking wrote:

@Aahz wrote:

@RentSeeking

 

Is there somewhere online that makes it easy for math idiots such as myself to generate such a table?


Excel is actually set up to do all of the heavy lifting for you with the PPMT, IPMT, and PMT functions. This guide does a very good job walking through the set-up. 

 

 

EDIT: I'll note that one limitation of this method is that the PMT functions assume equal payments--accounting for prepayment is trickier, but seeing the total amount of interest paid in the equal-payment schedule gives a good place to start estimating (and is usually close enough for me). 


I didn't know about those Excel functions but typically I use one of the bankrate calculators; that does have some 1 time payment type options that you can play with but it too mostly deals with similarly sized payments each period rather than being able to ad hoc add additional payments at various times unfortunately.

 

http://www.bankrate.com/calculators/mortgages/loan-calculator.aspx

 

Says mortgages but you can put in whatever you want for term and APR and the amortization table works well.




        
Message 7 of 11
New Visitor

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

So how do I initiate the balance transfer..?
Message 8 of 11
New Visitor

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

I just called great lakes, they take credit cards over the phone apparently (weird)

I'll charge it to my amex, get my Cashback, and balance transfer to a citi simplicity card. No annual fees, no BT fee, 0%APR for 12 months. Long as I pay off, I should be golden. Save me about $6k in interest I believe. Still doing the math. Be sure to call everybody to confirm what you're doing will work.
Message 9 of 11
Regular Contributor

Re: Advice, Paying off Student Loans with Credit Card.

Glad you worked it out kaivorth - I was about to suggest avoiding the cash advance, because as South Jamaica pointed out, the fees would offset your benefit goals. And, while I am SADLY not as Great Lakes with any of my student loans, haha, I have many times read of people being able to pay by credit card via phone. So, go you, and congratulations on your newest credit liberty!

Message 10 of 11