• Tue. Dec 7th, 2021

Martin Lewis reveals how to get 'dirty cheap' deals when borrowing as he warns interest free credit could be scrapped

Nov 19, 2021

MARTIN Lewis has explained how people can borrow money for virtually no cost.

The money expert said borrowing is "dirt cheap" at the moment – but also warned of the risks of overspending due to unplanned purchases.

Speaking on the ITV Money Show last night, he explained that loan rates are at their cheapest level, but with an interest rate rise on the cards, this could change soon.

Mr Lewis, the founder of the Money Saving Expert website, said: "Banks will even pay you £130 to get 0% overdrafts.

"But with an interest rate rise on the cards that may soon change."

He said the easiest way for people to borrow money is a 0% credit card, meaning that for a set number of months, no interest will need to be paid.

However, he said credit cards should not be used to borrow money regularly, but only for one-off purchases, for example, a new fridge.

He warned: "Debt is like fire – it's a useful tool but it can burn.

"The problems with credit cards are they are easy to overspend on and payments aren't fixed."

On his blog, Mr Lewis said urged people not to borrow money unless they really need to.

And if they need to borrow, people should be able to repay the loan as soon as possible, the expert said.

He said 0% credit cards are convenient when used for borrowing between £100 and £5,000.

He wrote: "Done right, 0% credit cards offer super-cheap borrowing, as there is NO COST WHATSOEVER for up to nearly two years."

At the moment, the expert's favourite deal is M&S Bank's 22mths 0%, which gives people £25 cashback if they spend more than £100 in the first 90 days.

He also mentioned Tesco Bank's 'up to' 23mths 0% card which has no cashback but gives Clubcard points on spending.

Debt is like fire – it's a useful tool but it can burn

Mr Lewis added: "Credit cards take discipline not to overspend on. So only do planned borrowing on these cards, then don't use them for anything else.

"If you don't trust yourself, put the card in a bag in a bowl of water and put it in your freezer, so you need smash the ice to get it out.

"The 0% is only for spending on the card, not for withdrawing cash, so avoid that.

"Ensure you plan your repayments to clear the debt before the 0% ends or it jumps to the 21%+ representative APR.

"The best way to do this is to set up a direct debit to repay a fixed amount like a loan."

Last week, Mr Lewis explained people can get up to £130 free cash before Christmas.

Banks are offering bonuses for switching your current account and if you make the change now, you could add some extra spending money to it.

Mr Lewis said: "The festive season has become the bank switching season. There are currently seven banks offering to pay you to move, with Halifax the latest to join the party."

The last time that this many banks were offering bonuses was back in 2015, he said.

He added: "So if you want to boost your Christmas coffers they're worth a look, unless your bank's so good it gives you a foot rub on request, and free tickets to the Oscars."

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