The Bowflex Nautilus Card Review
If you are seeking Bowflex Nautilus card because you want new exercise equipment but can't afford it, you should perhaps consider other options before making application.
This credit card can help you, however, if you are able to pay for this expensive equipment yet prefer to spread the payment out over a few months.
This is not a true credit card though the application fails to mention that. There is no Visa or MasterCard logo associated with this credit account and the card itself can only be used to purchase Nautilus and Bowflex exercise equipment.
If you carefully read terms you'll notice this is the only method you can use to finance this equipment. Of course you can pay cash or use a standard credit card but if you want financing provided, you will apply for the Nautilus credit card.
There is only one good reason to apply for this card. That reason is to take advantage of frequent offers that allow you to pay off the purchase over time with 0% interest charged.
Bowflex television ads offer several promotions a year where consumers can order this expensive equipment and have 12-18 months to pay for their purchase before being charged any interest on the purchase. This can be a good deal for someone who wants a specific exercise machine and prefers to pay over time.
If you are one who can monitor your account faithfully and budget your money to be certain to pay in full before the end of the promotional no-interest period elapses, this is preferable to using a standard Visa or MasterCard which would be charging you interest monthly.
You will need a certain level of credit rating to qualify for this financing. However, because it is a private labeled credit card, the manufacturer often will set lower standards for qualification than might be required by a major credit lender.
In truth, unless you are taking advantage of a special sale or 0% interest promotion to purchase Bowflex or Nautilus exercise equipment, you should not apply for this card.
If you use the card for a special financing deal, remember you will be paying high delivery fees on this heavy equipment. The salesperson will offer to add the delivery fees to your account and that is tempting.
The option of financing and ability to build the shipment costs into that financed debt often leads consumers to buy expensive items they cannot afford. It is easy to defer payment and this is especially true when there are special deals and same as cash terms offered.
When you make an application for the card you might notice the terms and conditions of the account are not easily accessible.
These accounts have an extremely high interest rate of 29.99% according to disgruntled account holders.
The monthly payment is not based on paying off the equipment in the free-interest time period but is a minimum payment far below what is needed to avoid finance charges on the purchase.
For example, if you purchased a $1200 piece of equipment and applied for credit through your card, it is likely you would be granted a spending limit of $1800. This is done for two reasons.
First, it gives you the ability to add in shipping costs and defer those charges. You might have second thoughts about your purchase if you learn you must pay $200-300 immediately for shipping.
That adds 20% more to the cost of the item. When the sales person says you can build in the shipping costs with the charge on your new credit card, it often overcomes your objective to that cost.
Second, by providing you with a higher amount than necessary for this purchase there is potential to upgrade to a more expensive model. After all, you think, if Nautilus is willing to grant you more money, why not use it?
There is one big problem with a private credit card that is designed only to facilitate sales of a certain manufacturer's products.
If you take advantage of the financing to access a special deal you must have the ability to pay off the purchase before that special no-interest deal expires.
If you have 18 months to pay off your $1200 purchase, you need to pay $75 a month with the goal of paying in full in 16 months. If you spread the payments over the full 18 months you risk going a day over the allowed time period which will cause significant financial distress.
When computing how much you will need to pay monthly, take the total amount you have charged (including shipping) and divide by 16.
Your monthly statement may require only a $20 payment each month but that amount should be ignored. Clearly, $20 a month will not pay off this purchase before the end of the special pricing terms.
If you are unable to pay the debt in full before the end of the introductory no-interest period of time, you will be charged 29.99% APR for the entire amount of the purchase. In other words, you will end up paying 29.99% interest from the day you charged that piece of exercise equipment.
Clearly, if you carefully read terms for the Bowflex Nautilus card, you will find the only valid use of this branded credit finance option is for those who want to take advantages of special sales that are time limited and who have the ability to pay off the purchase within the special offer timeframe.
Consider also other type of credit accounts, especially the secured one's as it will help you build and maintain a solid credit file!