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A balance transfer is a type of unsecured, short-term cash facility. It can help you transfer outstanding balance from one or more credit cards to a low or 0% interest account or credit line. It can also provide you with quick cash in times of emergency or need. It’s subject to a one-time processing fee on the approved transfer amount, which can range from as low as $500 to S$30,000. This short-term cash facility has to be repaid over a typical balance transfer repayment period of between 3 to 24 months before a high interest rate kicks in.
When you apply for a balance transfer in Singapore, you are borrowing from the available credit limit of your credit card or line of credit. The amount you borrow will be transferred to a bank account of your choice. Why do this? Because the best balance transfer offers in Singapore allow you to pay low or 0% interest on your consolidated balance over a set period of time.
Flexible monthly repayment: With balance transfers, you can choose how much to repay every month, beyond a minimum monthly sum (usually 1% to 3% of your outstanding balance), before the end of the repayment period. A personal loan requires you to repay a fixed monthly fee every month until the length of the repayment period ends. For example, say your balance transfer amount is S$10,000 and your repayment period is over 6 months. If your minimum monthly payment is S$100, then for the first 5 months you only need to pay S$100, but on the 6th month, you can repay the remaining S$9,500 at one go.

One-time processing fee: For balance transfer offers, banks usually charge a one-time processing fee of between 1% to 5% of your approved amount. For a personal loan, this is usually between 1% to 2%.

Length of the repayment period: Balance transfer repayment periods in Singapore are shorter and typically range from 3 to 24 months, while a personal loan can be between 1 to 5 years.

Applied interest rate: Typically banks in Singapore offer a 0% interest rate for a balance transfer at the start. For a personal loan, this can be between 4.5% to 7%.
The amount you can borrow via a balance transfer depends on how high your credit limit is. Typically, you may opt for a bank transfer of up to 90% of your available credit limit. Do note that you can only transfer the amount that you have not used on your card. This means that if you have a credit card with S$5,000 limit available, you may apply for a balance transfer up to S$4,500. However, if your credit card only has S$1,000 limit left, the maximum you can loan would be S$900. If you're planning to apply for a balance transfer, check your available credit limit for an approximation of how much you will be able to borrow. If you do not have a credit card with that bank yet, you will be enrolled for one as part of your balance transfer application.
A balance transfer remains interest-free only for the duration offered at the time of the loan application. Commonly, this ranges from 3 months to 12 months. If you do not manage to pay back your balance transfer loan during the 0% interest period, any outstanding amount will be treated as credit card debt. This means that you will be charged interest at the prevailing rates on any amount that is outstanding, and your credit card's available limit will remain lowered by however much you still owe. To avoid high interest charges from a balance transfer, make sure you pay back the amount loaned within the interest-free period.
A balance transfer is a good solution when you are confident that you can pay the full amount within the 0% interest period. This means that you can benefit from this product simply by budgeting around your payments. Make sure you set enough money aside each month such that the loan is completely paid off during the interest-free period. After all, the whole point of getting a balance transfer is to avoid the high interest rates of credit cards. You must also avoid using the credit card or credit line, as this will only add to the amount you are paying off and increase the risk of extending your loan beyond the interest-free period.
Many financial institutions offer balance transfers as a welcome offer for new credit card customers. You can use SingSaver.com.sg to compare balance transfers and find one that's right for you. To be eligible for a balance transfer, you need to be at least 21 years old. You must also be earning at least $20,000 per annum if you are a Singaporean or PR, or $40,000 per annum if you are a foreigner. Take control of your finances and save money on interest payment by comparing balance transfer personal loans on SingSaver.com.sg! We compare, you save.
Balance transfers are best if you need cash urgently, or have a big, short-term expense on the horizon and want to avoid the higher interest rates on other types of loan facilities. Typical use cases include repayment on outstanding credit card debt, a big-ticket event like a wedding, investment, emergency repair or medical bills, investment or business opportunities.

But beware: Always ensure you’re able to settle the full amount of the balance transfer by the end of the repayment period. If not, the effective interest rate (EIR) of the credit card or personal line of credit you’ve used to borrow the money from kicks in, and this can be as high as 26% per annum.
Before you apply for a balance transfer offer in Singapore, know the pros and cons.

Pros:
  • Helps you consolidate debt
  • Pay low or 0% interest rate for a limited time
  • Transfer your balance to a better credit card with rewards or lower interest rate
  • Quick cash


  • Cons:
  • Risk getting into more debt if you don’t pay off all or most of your balance during the initial repayment period
  • The interest rate after the initial repayment period is extremely high
  • Here are some important things to consider when shopping around.
  • How much is the applied interest rate? (Usually it’s zero, but double check)
  • How much is the one-time processing fee?
  • How long are the available loan repayment periods?
  • What is the Effective Interest Rate (EIR) after the loan repayment period ends?
  • What are the balance transfer limits?
  • Is the offer only valid for new or existing bank customers?
  • Are certain offers only available online?

  • Answering these questions can help you evaluate the best balance transfer offers in Singapore and find the best option for you.

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