When it comes to paying off credit card debt by a balance transfer, it matters how old a consumer is.
According to a new study from Boston College’s Center for Retirement Research, adults between the ages of 35 and 44 make better financial decisions when paying down their credit card balances. The study asked consumers in five age groups – 18 to 24, 25 to 34, 35 to 44, 45 to 64 and over 65 – to identify the best strategy to lower total debt when transferring the balance from one card to a new one with a low introductory rate.
The study found that about a third of all quizzed gave the right answer, which is to continue to make purchases on the old card while paying off the debt transferred to the new one, right away. The group that provided the most “immediate eureka moments” was that of the 35- to 44-year-olds, who were right over 40 percent of the time.
Consumers who are considering a balance transfer to lower their total credit card debt should be aware that the low rates most lenders offer are introductory and expire within a few months.