I decided today to start small and I called Credit Card #3 to see if I could negotiate a lower balance. Currently, the interest rate on the card is 16.47% and my balance is $900. I figured I had a good chance of lowering the rate on this card.
Here’s how the telephone call went (not word for word, but you’ll get the idea):
Me: I noticed on my statement that my interest rate is 16.47%. I’m calling to see if I can get that lowered.
Operator: Sure mam, I would be happy to take a look into that for you. Just give me a moment to look over your account.
Me: Okay (cool – sounds like I am getting somewhere).
Operator: Sorry mam, but you do not have a lower rate available to you at this time. However, you do have another program that you may be interested in where you can defer your payments … BLAH BLAH BLAH (selling a program that you have to pay into).
Me: No thank you, I am not interested. I will be paying off this card now (which – I am not bluffing after hearing that they won’t lower my rate). What do I need to do to cancel my card (trying to get him to say, “no wait a minute” and offer me a lower rate)?
Operator: I can do that for you right now mam. (WHAT??? The call isn’t supposed to go like that?? At that point I am flabbergastered that they don’t care about my business – which I have NEVER paid late to this company).
Me: I can’t do it yet, I have automatic payments coming out right now that I need to cancel. But when that is done I just call back?
Me: Okay. I will do that then (giving him ONE last chance to change his mind).
Me: Thank you very much. Goodbye.
I’ve read so many times to call the companies and you can negotiate a lower rate. Why didn’t it work here? Are they getting more gutsy and not buying into people calling and doing that? Or maybe because I only have $900 on the card I don’t matter to them.
It makes you wonder. I’m tempted to call again tomorrow and ask to speak to the manager. You know what – I am going to call again. This area needs to be explored more
UPDATE: 3/31/07 – I didn’t end up calling again. I ended up paying off the card 🙂