I would like to keep and use my business credit card, but I do not need it. I paid off around $10k today which took my balance to zero, now that my 0% introductory rate has ended. (The card is around 10 months old). Thus, I have never paid any fees on this card. The balance is now $0.

Unfortunately, my interest rate is over 20% which was the rate agreed to at opening the card. This rate is too high and I would not want to use a card with this high interest rate. It's true, I can pay off the balance, and then my interest rate is zero. However, that's not the question. The question is how I can effectively lower it to a much lower rate. I don't mean like 18%. I mean like 5% or less.

The only potentially bad mark is that there was a late fee (which was reversed) that was due to a misunderstanding on increases in my minimum payment, because I had autopay and didn't realize the minimum would increase. I had autopay set up that was over the minimum during the 0% intro period. However, after the period ended, this increased my minimum, and I did not understand how this worked and was not notified my minimum would increase.

Days after seeing this late fee I called, and they removed my late fee as well as crediting my account for the one month of accrued interest. This brought my account current, and ensured that there were no lasting negative factors, and my interest rate did not increase. After all it was only late days before I noticed, and then it was not late as it was brought back current without me actually paying anything. I'm not sure if this event will impact my negotiating position. They reversed it being their fault since I wasn't notified about the increase in the minimum causing the autopay to be insufficient.

Days later after this event, realizing my intro period was over and the interest is high, I paid off the entire card in one lump sum, bringing my balance to $0. Now, I do not intend to use it unless my interest rate is lowered.

Also keep in mind that this is a variable APR which is accumulated daily with compound interest. They told me this explicitly. The interest is calculated based on the daily average balance. It would be nearly impossible with the current terms to avoid any interest at all, since interest is accrued daily, not monthly. Do they expect me to pay it off immediately after using on the same day? That's impractical.

This is a business credit card, and I have not really done much to build business credit besides this card. I have no loans, no debts, and minimal business income.

My personal credit is excellent at nearly 800.

How can I (by calling and asking) effectively lower my interest rate? Am I in a good negotiating position having paid it off entirely and having a good payment history? Over the last nearly a year I was never late on payments, until the above incident which was resolved quickly and then the balance was fully paid off.

Also, is it possible to get really good terms like around 5%? I'm not sure if credit cards would ever offer rates as low as loans.

Additionally I would like to negotiate it into a fixed-rate card instead of a variable rate with daily accrued compound interest. This is not a good card as it is, but I would like to use it to build my business credit.

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    So, are you intending to use the card and not pay it off in full? If not, why do you care what the interest rate is? – D Stanley May 19 at 13:10

That was a lot to read, but I think your core question is how you can negotiate a lower interest rate on your card. The answer is pretty simple, call them and ask. They have retention specialists that will often work with you and knock a little off just because you called.

If you want an aggressive drop you pretty much need to be willing to cancel the card if you don't get the terms you like. Tell them your number, and if they don't meet your number ask to cancel your card. It might work, but at the very least you will get the best offer they can muster using this technique.

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  • In order to take such a hardline position (change or cancel), I would need to ask something they were actually capable of doing. For example it would be silly to ask for like 5% if the lowest they would possibly go even in extreme cases could only lower to 12% (only an example), then I would be asking for the impossible and destroy a potential credit-improving asset (asset only in the credit-increasing area; otherwise a credit card is a liability). I would like to use this card which I already have to help improve my business credit, but without such a high interest rate and undesirable terms. – finance May 18 at 21:59
  • You'll never know what they can do for sure. It will depend on a lot of factors, but it may get you to their best offer more quickly. In the end the worst they can say is no. No harm in asking. – JohnFx May 20 at 14:07

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