Successful Credit Card Stoozing - Making Money from Credit Cards
So you've tried cashback credit cards and now you want something new to make money? Well, you have come to the right place. Credit card 'stoozing' is free, perfectly legal and can even help build your credit score. 'Stoozing' is basically making money using interest free purchase credit cards. In this article i will tell you which cards to choose, how to do it and how much money you can make. As an experienced 'stoozer' i can vouch that literally hundreds of pounds per year can be made doing this.
Step 1: Is 'stoozing' right for me?
Before you even consider 'stoozing' consider this. Most credit cards suitable for 'stoozing' are only available to those with a squeaky clean credit history. If you have a poor credit history or have missed several payments on a previous card do not try this. If you apply for one of the suitable cards with a poor credit history you are likely to be rejected and this will damage your credit score further. However, if you do have a good credit history please read on.
Step 2: Picking the right card
This is not too difficult. Use either best buy tables in the financial sections of papers or try comparison website to search for the credit card with the longest possible interest free period on purchases. You are not looking for a good balance transfer rate but instead a good interest free purchase period. Previously i have had cards with up to 15 months interest free. The longer the period, the better. One final point to note on this, some cards offer rewards too. Consider this an added bonus that not only can you 'stooze' but also collect loyalty points on your spending for use later. A double bonus!
Step 3: Apply for the card
Apply for the card and wait for it to arrive. Once in receipt, register the card as normal but set up a direct debit to pay the minimum balance each month. This stage is crucial. Even though there is no interest charged on purchases you must still make the minimum payment each month to be sure that your credit record will not be adversely impacted.
Step 4: The savings account
Along with applying for the credit card you will also need a suitable savings account to store the cash you have not paid off the card. Instant access accounts are best, especially those only available online as they generally have better rates. Remember, the higher the interest rate the better the return on your 'stoozing'. A cash ISA could work, but i normally save this for regular savings.
Step 5: The spreadsheet
Any efficient 'stoozer' will make a spreadsheet to assist in the task of calculating how much to save. The spreadsheet should detail your monthly spend on the card, your minimum payment, the amount you have transferred to your savings account and the amount of interest you are earning on your savings.
Step 6: Spending
As the credit card interest free period only lasts a set amount of time, the larger the spend at the start of the period, the more money you are set to make, because the longer the money can grow in your savings account. So spend big to start with. Personally i do the majority of my shopping on my credit card and avoid cash. This way you maximise the amount of money you save each month.
Step 7: The 'stoozing'
After your first month of spending you will have a credit card statement. This will detail how much you have spend and how much you need to make as a minimum payment. If you have followed my steps above you will have setup a direct debit for the minimum balance and will not need to worry about making the minimum payment. If not, make sure you make the minimum payment, and do this several working days in advance of the payment date to ensure the funds are cleared.
Once you have paid the minimum payment, pay the remaining sum into your savings account. I often do this several times a month, throughout the statement period to ensure i maximise my return. Use the spreadsheet to assist with this process.
Then from each month thereafter continue the steps above by paying the minimum balance each month and paying the remaining sum into your savings account. Important Note: Never spend more on a credit card than you can afford. Do not use this method if you plan to get into debt!
Step 8: The end of the deal
In the month preceding the end of the interest free period (make a note of the date it finishes on your spreadsheet) pay off the remaining balance on the credit card using the savings you have accrued. This will prevent any interest being charged on the credit card.
Step 9: The morning after
Once your interest free period is over and you have cleared the balance, stop spending on the card. Allow one month to elapse with no transactions on the card, then call the credit card company and cancel the card.
Step 10: Move On
Once you have finished with your first card and it has been cancelled. Move on. Find a new card, with a new company (you will often not be able to apply for a new card with the same company for up to 12 months after the first card is cancelled). Once you have your new card start again.
My experience of 'stoozing' is that its quite time consuming but the returns are far bigger than a simple cashback credit card. I have had three cards that i have used to stooze and the best return i made (after tax deducted) was just over £200. This is not a particularly large sum and more could definitely be made.