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Last updated on December 17th, 2020
Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum Card
0% Introductory APR for 20 Months
- Regular Purchase APR 13.49% to 23.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Balance Transfer APR 13.49% to 23.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance APR 25.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Annual Fee None
- Credit Needed Excellent , Good
- Intro Purchase APR 0% for 20 months from account opening date
- Processing Network Visa
- No annual fee
- No interest on purchases or balance transfers for 15 months
- Sterling National Bank’s lowest available APR
- Visa protections and benefits
- Intro Purchase APR: 0% for 20 months from account opening date
- Regular Purchase APR: 13.49% to 23.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Intro Balance Transfer APR: 0% for 20 months from account opening date
- Balance Transfer APR: 13.49% to 23.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
- Cash Advance APR: 25.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 4% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
- Foreign Transaction Fee: Up to 3% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
At a Glance
The Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum Card provides a great rate and an extensive 0% intro APR period in one neat package. The card also benefits from no annual fee, plus a host of Visa® perks and protections.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Live on Long Island or in the Greater NYC area
- Already carry a credit card balance they want to pay down significantly
- Prefer the option of financing a large purchase over 15 months instead of rewards points
- Don’t want to pay an annual fee
Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum Card Review
The Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum Card offers a great chance to pay down existing balances and finance significant purchases. The card, from New York-based lender Sterling National Bank, benefits from a lengthy interest-free period and no annual fee.
0% Introductory APR for 15 Months
Any balance transfer card worth its salt comes with a decent 0% APR introductory offer. The SNB Visa® Platinum more than meets this requirement, offering cardholders a lengthy interest-free period of 15 months. This introductory offer is several months more than is typically found with other balance transfer cards.
Most cards typically come with a 0% intro APR period of between six months to a year. And, while the 15 months that come with the Sterling National bank Visa® Platinum aren’t an industry-leader (the Citi Simplicity comes with 21 months), it’s ample enough to pay down existing balances significantly.
Perfect for Financing Larger Purchases Over Time
The real benefit of this introductory interest-free period is that it extends to both balance transfers and purchases. The additional perk of 15 months with no interest on purchases makes the card a robust tool for financing bigger buys.
Planning significant purchases with a credit card goes two very different routes. The first is by using a rewards card to earn points on these purchases. Large purchases earn hefty points – especially with an introductory offer like the SNB Premier Rewards American Express offers. Spending big to earn big, however, comes with the danger of amassing a considerable balance. This, in turn, can lead to interest accrual – especially if the individual isn’t following their budget.
The other option is to use a low APR credit card like the SNB Visa® Platinum. Since the card enjoys 0% APR for 15 months, there’s no worry about interest piling up. In fact, the 15-month window makes the card great for paying down those balances slowly and steadily. Of course, this requires repaying the entire balance within the promotional period. While there may not be rewards per se, it’s easy enough to argue that the enormous financial savings are an even bigger bonus than, say, 10,000 rewards points.
Competitive Regular APR
Once the 15-month 0% intro APR window closes, the regular APR with the Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum is competitive. The variable APR falls below the national average for a low APR card, though not as low as you find with other offerings, especially from credit unions. The Quorum RateWise Mastercard, for example, offers New Yorkers an APR starting below 10%.
For a larger bank, however, Sterling National Bank’s Visa® Platinum offers a rate that bests other New York-based issuers. The rate is a full percentage point lower than what you’ll find with the NYCB Platinum Edition Card from New York Community Bank, for example. That said, however, the lowest APR with the SNB Visa® is still 2% higher than offerings like the KeyBank Latitude, M&T Visa®, or PNC Core Visa®.
Still, the APR with the SNB Visa® Platinum is very competitive. Those choosing the card will have no problems using it to carry a balance or pay down remaining balances once the 15-month 0% APR period concludes.
No Annual Fee
The Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum doesn’t charge an annual fee. Annual fees aren’t standard with balance transfer or low APR credit cards, as they don’t offer points. That said, not having to pay an annual fee is always a nice perk that deserves highlighting. No yearly charge for holding the card is one less fee that holders will need to worry about.
Other Card Features
Beyond the APR and introductory interest-free periods, there isn’t a whole lot to the SNB Visa® Platinum Card. The card features the usual array of Visa® Platinum protections and benefits. These include Zero Fraud Liability, extended warranty coverage, and 24/7 customer service. Cardholders also benefit from Visa’s Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver and Roadside Dispatch for travel and car rentals. These perks aren’t unique to the card, but again, they’re nice to have.
The Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum also features foreign transaction fees. These fees are in line with many cards. No foreign transaction fees make a card more versatile. They make the card a global purchasing tool, instead of just a card to use in the U.S.
Fortunately, as the fee isn’t too high, it won’t punish travelers too badly. Additionally, thanks to no annual fee, it can simply be kept in the wallet instead of using a travel or cash back card abroad.
Should You Apply for the Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum Card?
Overall, the Sterling National Bank Visa® Platinum is a quality low APR and balance transfer card. The regular APR is competitive, and the 0% intro APR extends to both purchases and balance transfers. The fact that this introductory period lasts a solid 15 months doesn’t hurt, either.
The card fares well when matched with offers from larger issuers – and even some local NY competition. Ultimately, however, the appeal for the card is limited. Sterling National Bank is centered in Southern New York – especially New York City and Long Island. There are also branches further upstate and in Connecticut, but the market is very narrow.
Within this small area, however, the card makes great sense for those who already bank with Sterling and want a potent tool for paying down – or carrying – balances. The card also makes sense for those looking for a reliable way to make everyday purchases – without the fear of initial interest. For those seeking rewards, there are numerous other options available with a great intro APR, including the M&T Visa Signature, the BBVA ClearPoints, or several cards from Sterling National Bank.