Skip to main content

Could this be the last big January balance transfer bonanza as lenders slash interest-free terms by up to 35%?

** For Immediate Release**

  • £6 billion switched in month of January alone in the last 4 years (Jan 2015 to Jan 2018 inc)
  • Total of 2.64 million balance transfer transactions in January in the last four years
  • Two years ago, the longest 0% balance transfer (BT) deals were 43 months now only two lenders offer more than 30 months
  • Customers urged to apply with caution and check their credit score first

Alastair Douglas, CEO of TotallyMoney, the credit experts, comments on the dwindling choice of long-term balance transfers as we approach the biggest month of the year for credit card debt switching. “January has always been the bumper month for balance transfers, with many consumers re-jigging their finances as part of their New Year resolutions – but the best 0% terms are disappearing fast.” “Last January was the busiest in 12 years with £1.63 billion switched in 31 days – it will be interesting to see if the trend continues next month. “At the start of 2017 there were 10 major credit card providers offering 0% interest terms of 40 months or more, now the market has slumped and there are just two lenders with deals over 30 months (MBNA and Post Office). “It seems that providers are falling out of love with ultra-long zero per cent cards and if the trend continues over the next 12 months, some consumers will become increasingly anxious if there’s no longer a healthy stream of 0% offers to help them plug the hole in their finances. “TotallyMoney urges customers not to rush in and make panic applications and risk damaging their credit score. By signing up for a Free Credit Report users will be able to check their Borrowing Power and eligibility to find out which cards they have the most choice of being accepted for.”  

Credit card balance transfer activity for the month of January

Month

Value of balance transfers £ billion

Number of balance transfers

January 2015

£1.34bn

592,000

January 2016

£1.43bn

631,000

January 2017

£1.60bn

711,000

January 2018

£1.63bn

705,000

Total

£6.00bn

2,639,000

Source: UK Finance

  Alastair added: “Interest-free credit deals won’t be around for ever, so we encourage people to make the most of them while they are still around – if you can clear your debt within the promotional term it’s a smart and cost-effective way of managing your money.”  

Card Provider

Longest 0% BT deal at 1st Feb 2017

Longest 0% BT deal at 17th Dec 2018

MBNA

43 months

33 months – down 23%

Halifax

43 months

28 months – down 35%

Nuba (MBNA)

42 months

Brand scrapped for new customers

Barclaycard

42 months

29 months – down 31%

Sainsbury’s Bank

42 months

30 months – down 28%

Lloyds Bank

42 months

28 months – down 33%

Virgin Money

41 months

29 months – down 29%

Santander

41 months

30 months – down 27%

AA Cards

41 months

Cards not available for new customers

Tesco Bank

40 months

28 months – down 30%

Research Moneycomms.co.uk 17.12.2018

  Andrew Hagger, Personal Finance Expert from Moneycomms said: “Some card customers use interest-free balance transfers as a smart way to save money, but for others it’s a way to keep their heads above water as they try to juggle increasing levels of personal debt and to stop their bank account going into the red”. If you’re serious about shifting debt and getting your finances back on track, getting a copy of your Free Credit Report is essential as it’s the foundation to all your borrowing, whether it’s your plastic or a mortgage application.”


For more information, please contact the press team

About TotallyMoney

  • TotallyMoney is the credit app built to help people move forward and achieve their financial goals
  • It’s the only credit app that provides customers with their live credit score for free
  • Almost 4 million customers have already signed up to TotallyMoney, and its service is rated 4.6/5 on TrustPilot
  • TotallyMoney is the UK’s 5th best financial services company to work for, with a 3 star accreditation that reflects ‘world class’ levels of workplace engagement
TotallyMoney Logo

We're on a mission to improve the UK's credit score and help people move on up to a better future.


TotallyMoney is an independent credit broker, not a lender. Our comparison service works with most leading lenders, covering the majority of the market. Though we may be paid a fee by lenders or brokers this never influences how our products are ranked.

We don't provide financial advice. Product information is obtained from independent sources and rates displayed may vary depending on your personal circumstances. While we make every effort to ensure that information is up to date, you should always confirm the terms of the offer with the product provider.

TotallyMoney is owned and operated by TotallyMoney Limited which is registered in England and Wales (Company Registration Number 06205695). TotallyMoney Limited is an Appointed Representative of TM Connect Limited, which is registered in England and Wales (Company Registration Number 06967012) and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in respect of consumer credit related activities (FCA FRN: 511936). Trading Address and Registered Office: Chapter House, 16 Brunswick Place, London N1 6DZ. Credit is available, subject to status, only to UK residents aged 18 or over.

We use cookies as described in our Cookie Policy. Continue browsing or click to accept.