Banks generally treat balance transfers like cash advances and have similar transaction fees.
There's no fee for balances transferred in response to special offers.
But for Citi Platinum Select and many other companies, the transaction fee for balance transfers is 3 percent of the amount of each balance transfer, with a $5 minimum and $50 maximum.
Keep in mind that a small amount of funds may not be worth transferring because the transaction fee may outweigh your potential savings.
In addition to standard transaction costs, banks also charge special fees that can take you by surprise. Some of the most common special fees include:
- Late fees – Some banks wait a few days before assessing a late fee, but many impose it the day after the payment was due. Companies either charge a flat fee, such as $10 or $15, or a percentage, such as 5 percent, of the minimum payment due. To avoid late fees, mail off your payment so it arrives in plenty of time before it's due. If you pay your bill at the bank's branch or ATM, find out how long it will take to process your payment. Sometimes payments made at a branch or ATM are not credited for a few days.
- Over-credit-limit fees – Most cards assess a fee if you charge more than your credit limit. These fees are charged each time you go over your limit, so you could be hit with several of them during the same billing period. Banks typically charge $10 or $15 for this fee or up to 5 percent of the amount you're over your limit. These fees are in addition to interest charges.
- Lost card replacement fees? If your card has been lost or stolen more than once and you need a new one, some companies will charge you for a replacement. These fees are range from $5 to $10.