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Balance Transfers

How to transfer a balance to a Wells Fargo credit card

Summary

Considering a balance transfer to a Wells Fargo credit card? Here’s everything you need to know, including card options, fees, restrictions and tips for improving your chances of approval.

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It’s easy for credit card debt to pile up. Those high interest rates can cause your debt to grow each month, making paying it down even more of a challenge. That’s where a balance transfer credit card might help.

If you’re considering transferring a balance to a Wells Fargo credit card, here’s everything you need to know, including interest rates, fees and introductory offers, plus tips to improve your chances of approval.

See related: What is a balance transfer: 9 things you should know

Wells Fargo balance transfer options

Wells Fargo offers a variety of credit cards that come with introductory 0 percent balance transfer offers.

Wells Fargo Platinum card

  • Balance transfer fee: Either $5 or 3 percent of the amount you transfer, whichever figure is greater, for the first 120 days; 5 percent thereafter.
  • 0 percent promotional period: 18 months on qualifying balance transfers
  • Regular APR: Variable 17.49 percent to 26.99 percent based on your credit. For more information, see Wells Fargo Platinum card review.
  • Worth noting: The card doesn’t offer a rewards program or many additional features, though cardholders may find the cellphone insurance valuable.

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® Card

  • Balance transfer fee: Either $5 or 3 percent of the amount you transfer, whichever figure is greater, for the first 120 days; 5 percent thereafter.
  • 0 percent promotional period: 15 months on qualifying balance transfers
  • Regular APR: Variable 15.99 percent to 27.99 percent based on your credit. For more information, see Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card review.
  • Worth noting: You’ll earn a $150 cash rewards bonus when you charge $500 in the first three months of opening your account. You’ll earn unlimited 1.5 percent cash rewards on each purchase, and 1.8 percent cash back on qualified digital wallet purchases like Google Pay™ and Apple Pay® purchases for the first 12 months.

Wells Fargo Cash Back College Visa card

  • Balance transfer fee
    : Either $5 or 3 percent of your transfer amount, whichever figure is greater, for the first 120 days; 5 percent or $5 thereafter.
  • 0 percent promotional period: 6 months on qualifying balance transfers
  • Regular APR: Variable 13.40 percent to 23.40 percent. For more information, see Wells Fargo Cash Back College Visa card review.
  • Worth noting: You’ll earn 3 percent cash rewards for up to $2,500 for gas, grocery and drugstore purchases for the first six months after opening your account. You’ll receive 1 percent cash back on other purchases.

Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card

  • Balance transfer fee: Either $5 or 3 percent of your transfer amount, whichever figure is greater, for the first 120 days; 5 percent thereafter.
  • 0 percent promotional period: 12 months on qualifying balance transfers
  • Regular APR: Variable 15.99 percent to 27.99 percent. For more information, see Wells Fargo Propel American Express card review.
  • Worth noting: Earn 3 points for every dollar you charge on restaurants, travel and select streaming service purchases; plus 1 point for every dollar you charge on other purchases. You can also earn 30,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 on purchases during the first three months.

Wells Fargo Visa Signature card

  • Balance transfer fee: $5 or 3 percent of your transfer amount, whichever is greater.
  • 0 percent promotional period: 15 months on qualifying balance transfers
  • Regular APR: Variable 14.74 percent to 27.74 percent, based on your credit. See Wells Fargo Visa Signature card review for details.
  • Worth noting: Earn five times the rewards points for up to $12,500 that you charge on gas, grocery and drugstore purchases for the first six months after opening your account. Earn one point for all other purchases. Your points will be worth 50 percent more when they are redeemed for airfare.

Wells Fargo Rewards Card

  • Balance transfer fee: $5 or 3 percent of your transfer amount, whichever is greater.
  • 0 percent promotional period: 15 months on qualifying balance transfers
  • Regular APR: Variable 18.74 percent to 27.74 percent, based on your credit.
  • Worth noting: Earn five times the rewards points for up to $12,500 on gas, grocery and drugstore purchases for the first six months after opening your account. Earn one point for all other purchases.

What to know about Wells Fargo balance transfers before applying

  • Don’t wait too long: If you want to transfer a balance, request one within 120 days of opening your Wells Fargo credit card account. During this period, the balance transfer fee will be $5 or 3 percent of your balance transfer amount, whichever is greater. If you wait until after 120 days, your balance transfer fee will rise to 5 percent of your transfer amount.
  • The 0 percent offer isn’t indefinite: If you want to take advantage of a 0 percent balance transfer offer, you’ll again have to request your balance transfer within 120 days of opening your account.
  • No transferring between Wells Fargo cards: You can’t transfer a balance from one Wells Fargo card to another.
  • No rewards: The balance you transfer to a Wells Fargo card will not earn cash rewards or rewards points.

How to improve your chances of approval for a balance transfer

Wells Fargo will look at your credit score and credit reports when analyzing your balance transfer request.

“It’s not easy to get approved for a zero-interest credit card,” said Omar Chouche, chief executive officer and certified debt specialist with Liberty Debt Relief in Orange, California. “You typically must have a higher credit score and rather low debt-to-income ratio, which is not something many of us have.”

Debt-to-income ratio measures how much of your gross monthly income your monthly debts eat up. Ideally, your monthly debts will equal no more than 36 percent of your gross monthly income.

How to initiate a balance transfer on a Wells Fargo credit card

If you already have a Wells Fargo credit card:

  • Log into your account and click on the “Accounts” tab at the top of the screen.
  • Click “Request Balance Transfer” in the “Manage Cards” drop-down menu.
  • Provide information about the credit card from which you are transferring a balance. This will include the name of the card issuer, your account number with the card and the amount you want to transfer.
  • Click “submit” to initiate the balance transfer.

If you are applying for a new Wells Fargo card:

  • Pick the Wells Fargo credit card that is right for you. You might prefer a basic card or one that offers rewards.
  • Start an online credit card application for the Wells Fargo card of your choice. During this process, you will be asked if you’d like to transfer a balance from one of your other credit cards. Select this option.
  • Provide the account number and issuer of your existing card. Then list how much you’d like to transfer to your new Wells Fargo card.

How to make a balance transfer work

Christine Luken, a Cincinnati-based certified financial coach and author of Money is Emotional: Prevent Your Heart from Hijacking Your Wallet, said that people tend to make two mistakes after completing a balance transfer.

  • Some don’t pay off their debt before the 0 percent offer expires, meaning that the leftover amount they owe is now attached to a high interest rate.
  • Others do pay off the debt but then run up more credit card debt to replace it.

As Luken says, to pay off your debt, you need a plan for after you complete your balance transfer.

This means creating a budget and determining how much money you can afford to commit to paying off your debt each month.

“I’m not opposed to balance transfers. They can be a tool to accelerate your debt payoff because of the lower interest rate,” Luken said. “But there is a difference between transferring balances and eliminating debt.”

Alexis Busetti, owner and financial coach with Houston-based Cistern & Grove, said that a 0 percent transfer won’t solve any of your long-term spending habits.

Busetti says the key to solving financial problems is to build your savings. That way, you’ll always have money available to cover unexpected expenses, and you won’t have to resort to using your credit card to pay for them.

“They are looking to debt instead of savings to solve their debt problems,” Busetti said. “Money saved, not just cash flow, is the solution for debt problems.”

What’s up next?

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Published: May 21, 2019

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