SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Federal Reserve is raising interest rates for the second time in recent months, so what does that mean for your credit card debt?

This will be a point five percent increase in interest rates, the largest increase in two decades, to combat the 40 year high inflation.

While that decision was announced Wednesday, you likely won’t see it take effect for another month or two. This will impacts loans with variable rates for existing debt. That could be anything from private student loans to credit card debt to your mortgage.

22News spoke with Martin Lynch, the Director of Education at Cambridge Credit Counseling. He said there are some steps you can take to avoid rate hikes, especially if you have good credit.

“You can qualify for a zero percent interest rate balance transfer card and you have the means to pay down your existing debt, you can use one of those to your advantage and make sure your credit cards are paid to zero,” said Lynch.

Martin added that option really only works if you have the ability to pay down the balance all the way. That’s because eventually those zero interest introductory rates usually expire and then you’re faced with a high interest rate.