The Bank of England recently raisedinterest rates for the first time in a decade - but will this drive up the cost of your credit card, overdraft or personal loan?
On Wednesday, the Bank of England announced it was moving the base rate to 0.5%, up from the historic low of 0.25%.
Which? looks at the impact of the rate rise on borrowers of unsecured debt - namely, users of personal loans, overdrafts or credit cards.
While the last rate rise was in July 2007, a 0.25% increase isn't a huge change - and rates remain low compared to previous decades.
But historical trends suggest borrowers with unsecured debts are unlikely to see the costs of their debts soaring in the short term.
As the chart below shows, the base rate only has a limited impact on these types of debt. In fact, when the base rate tumbled over a decade ago, borrowing costs for all these products actually increased, rather than fell, according to Bank of England data.
The base rate has almost no influence on the rates charged by credit card companies, which have stubbornly stayed at around 18% for several years now. If anything, average APRs have been creeping up as the base rate has fallen.
That's not to say that credit card companies couldn't start to increase the rates they charge - either by hiking up costs for long-standing customers, or making new deals less attractive.
Credit reporting company ClearScore says that some lenders started doing this ahead of the rate increase, with many providers reducing their interest free balance transfer offers from 43 months to 39 months.
But if you've recently taken out a credit card, don't be worried about a fee hike - card companies aren't allowed to increase their rates during the first 12 months of a deal, according to ClearScore. And if your credit card provider does boost your costs, you can always switch to a new deal elsewhere.
As with credit cards, overdraft rates increased, rather than fell, when the base rate was slashed in 2008. The increase wasn't as much as with credit cards - though overdrafts tend to be a more expensive way to borrow than plastic, or personal loans.
The Bank of England only tracks the average rates for authorised overdrafts - meaning borrowers who exceed their limit could end up paying far more. In many cases, an unauthorised overdraft will cost you .
Personal loans also became more expensive in the immediate aftermath of 2008 rate cut. But unlike credit cards and overdrafts, the costs did gradually come down again afterwards.
It's possible that rates will start to rise again now, but competition among lenders, as well as the small size of the increase, means there are unlikely to be drastic changes in the near term.
Personal loans are also normally agreed at a fixed interest rate - so any increase will only affect new customers. If you've already agreed a loan, the bank, building society or peer-to-peer lender should honour the rate it agreed with you at the time.
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