Reduce debt and raise your credit score: Chase Slate Edge card review
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Chase Slate Edge overview
The Chase Slate Edge is tailored to consumers who want to achieve their financial goals, whether it’s reducing credit card debt or raising their credit score. This card comes with an introductory APR period to help you avoid interest for a limited time, plus several other incentives after making consistent on-time payments. Card rating*: ⭐⭐⭐
*Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
But there’s one major caveat — in order to avoid credit card interest fees, you must first pay your balance on time and in full. Therefore, if you currently have credit card debt, your first step is to prioritize reducing your account balance.
Related: TPG’s beginner guide to credit cards
Fortunately, there are tools to help you avoid an exorbitant amount of interest and late fees. One of these is the new no-annual-fee Chase Slate Edge credit card, designed just for those who need to reduce their existing debt and help raise their credit score over time.
Let’s take a look at this new card and examine everything it has to offer.
Who is this card for?
If you’ve damaged your credit score and are facing credit card debt, know that you’re not alone. According to Debt.org, the average household credit card debt in 2021 is $5,315 — and the fees continue to grow the longer you’re unable to pay off your balances.
Therefore, if you’re a consumer who needs to start from scratch, you’re an ideal candidate for the Slate Edge. While you may think applying for another credit card isn’t the solution to reduce debt, the Slate Edge comes with an introductory APR offer and other key tools to help you improve your finances.
It’s rare for credit cards designed to help rebuild your credit to offer a sign-up bonus simultaneously. This is where the Chase Slate Edge is a standout offer among the rest — you’ll get a $100 bonus on your statement after spending $500 in your first six months of account opening.
While this isn’t a huge sign-up bonus, this is a nice incentive to add some extra cash in your pocket for a reasonably low spending threshold.
Main benefits and perks
While you won’t earn any points or cash back with the Chase Slate Edge, this card is intended to help rebuild your credit from the ground up.
For starters, there’s a 0% introductory APR period on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 months from account opening (then a variable APR of 14.99% to 23.74% applies). This means that you can transfer your account balance from your existing credit cards to the Chase Slate Edge — and enjoy a sweet 0% interest rate for a limited time. While you’ll face an intro balance transfer fee of $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater in the first 60 days (then $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater thereafter), this 12-month period is a strategic time to pay off your balance as quickly as possible without accruing any other interest.
After the introductory period, you’ll face a variable APR of 14.99% to 23.74% on any remaining balance. Fortunately, the Slate Edge will automatically consider you for a 2% APR reduction if you spend $1,000 by your next account anniversary and make on-time payments.
There’s another incentive to pay in a timely manner with the Slate Edge: You’ll enjoy an automatic credit line increase by spending $500 in the first six months. The opportunity to gain an increased credit line is good news for those who need access to a higher limit and reduce your debt-to-credit ratio — which factors in for a whopping 30% of your FICO credit score.
Finally, Chase offers user-friendly tools such as Credit Journey and My Chase Plan to help you manage your debt and track your progress toward your financial goals. To sum it up, while you won’t earn any enticing rewards with this card, it’s even more important to focus on reducing your debt and avoid any ancillary fees first — and the Chase Slate Edge delivers.
Which cards compete with the Chase Slate Edge?
The Chase Slate Edge’s direct competitor is the Citi® Double Cash Card, which also has no annual fee — but offers cardholders the opportunity to earn valuable cash-back rewards. While there’s no sign-up bonus (unlike the Slate Edge), you earn 1% when you buy and 1% when you pay off your balance. That’s a considerable 2% rewards rate on all your purchases, which can certainly add up to more money in your pocket over time.
Plus, the Citi Double Cash offers a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers for the first 18 months (then a variable APR of 13.99% to 23.99% applies), giving you an extra six months to reduce your debt. Balance transfers must be completed within the first four months of account opening.
However, the downside to the Citi Double Cash is that you’ll likely need a good or excellent credit score to qualify. This may put many candidates out of the running to apply for this card. Meanwhile, the Chase Slate Edge is explicitly designed for those looking to rebuild their credit, giving you better approval odds in general.
If you have a low credit score and have trouble getting approved, you may want to consider a secured credit card instead. The Secured Mastercard® from Capital One allows you to define your credit limit by putting down a fully refundable deposit of up to $1,000. You’ll be automatically considered for a credit line increase after six months, incentivizing users to hone in on their credit usage strategies and rebuild their credit scores.
A significant downside to this card is that you’ll face a 26.99% variable APR. This means you’ll want to pay your balance on time and in full to avoid this high interest rate. But, if your goal is strictly to rebuild your credit, the Secured Mastercard from Capital One is an excellent tool.
Consumers have faced various financial challenges throughout the pandemic. If one of your immediate goals is to reduce credit card debt, the Chase Slate Edge can be a crucial tool to unlock financial freedom once and for all.
Not only will this card help you rebuild your credit and establish healthy credit habits, but you can then move on to bigger and better credit cards that can help you earn maximum rewards on all of your purchases.
Featured photo by John Gribben for The Points Guy
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- Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
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