Will consolidating my debt hurt my credit

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A balance transfer lets you take all your credit card balances and lump them into one new credit card with either a lower ongoing annual percentage rate (APR) or a lower introductory APR for a specific period.This can ultimately help you get out of debt faster while paying less in the long run.This way, getting a variety of quotes won’t show up on your credit report and indirectly impact your credit score.You can find and compare loan offers on Lending Tree — we use a soft credit pull to search for loans that may suit you.For many people battling debt like credit card bills, medical bills, and student loans, debt consolidation is an effective way to reduce monthly payments, lower interest costs and ultimately get debt-free faster.

Your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) also comes into play.The higher the interest rates are on your existing debt, the more you’re likely to save with a balance transfer, but there’s a catch: When the promotional interest rate expires, you’ll probably get slammed with a high ongoing APR.To get the most out of a balance transfer, pay off your balance before the promotional period ends. Credit card companies also usually charge a one-time transfer fee of up to 5 percent of the balance, so be sure to read the fine print, do the math and have a payoff plan in place before pulling the trigger.the percentage of available credit you’re using) and lower the average age of your credit history.Those two factors — amounts owed and length of credit history — make up a huge chunk of your credit score.

These plans often require closing your credit card accounts, and if the debt management or credit counseling agency negotiates lower settlements on your behalf, those accounts may be reported to the credit bureaus as “not paid as agreed.” That can hurt your credit score.

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