Is it bad to close a credit card?

how bad is it to close a credit card

Asked by tinyfaery ( 37629 ) 1 month ago from iPhone

I got a credit card from the place I bought my tires from that had 6 months with no interest. I paid it off before 6 months so I have zero balance.

I was just going to cancel it. Is it bad for my credit to do so? I know your credit score is calculated on how much credit vs. how much debt.

20 Answer s

The short answer is “probably not.”

The long answer is that how closed credit cards affect your credit history is somewhat complicated. First, your payment history will continue to affect your credit score regardless of whether the card is open or closed (seven years for bad payment history, ten years for good payment history). In your case, though, this is a good thing (especially since payment history controls about ⅓ of your credit score).

Second, closing a credit card reduces the amount of total credit you have available. But it doesn’t change the amount of credit you are using. Therefore, your utilization ratio (which is based on the percentage of available credit you are using) will go up. Utilization ratio is one of the main ways that potential creditors determine your credit risk (and credit risk controls another ⅓ of your credit score), so closing the card will technically lower your score. However. it will not make you any worse off than you were before you opened the card.

Finally, if this were your only credit card, your oldest credit card, or your only form of credit at all, then closing the account could hurt your credit score. Since your credit history for closed accounts goes away after seven or ten years, a closed account will eventually be erased from your credit history. This is bad if you don’t have other longstanding accounts to show that you aren’t a credit risk. Additionally, credit score is in part determined by what sorts of credit you have available. Only having credit cards and having no credit cards are both bad for your credit score. Closing your only credit card would therefore decrease the diversity of your credit portfolio, thus lowering your score. Assuming you have other accounts and other types of accounts, though, neither of these concerns will apply in your case. (These two factors combined control about ¼ of your credit score.)

In short, closing accounts that you haven’t had for very long isn’t a huge risk. While potential creditors will look at the average age of your various accounts, newer accounts don’t help that much anyway. It’s closing old accounts that is bad for your credit

score—so don’t let this one linger if you’re just going to close it eventually anyway!

SavoirFaire ( 20999

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Cancel the credit card but find a bank that will give you a debit card. It has all the advantages of a credit card but you use your own money. Such a card will be useful for shopping and you won’t need to carry a lot of cash around with you.

Cosmos ( 391

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You will reduce your available credit when you close it, so your credit score might dip a little temporarily. What was the limit on the card? If it was just a couple grand it will have very little effect. If it was $15k maybe a little more affect, because the available credit is higher.

I’m going to go against what @Cosmos said and say do not get a debit card to replace the credit card. Debit cards do not affect your credit report at all. Get a regular credit card to replace the one you want to close if you don’t have any other credit cards in your wallet already.

Get a credit card that either has no annual fee or at least the first year the fee is waved and some other sort of gimme like a free hotel night or 25,000 airline miles, or a cash back card, etc.

JLeslie ( 49581

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Keep the card. One of the major factors in your credit score is the amount you owe divided by the amount of available credit. The lower the number in this ratio, the better.

If you reduce the number int he denominator (the tire credit card) and the numerator stays the same, you are actually using a higher percentage of your available credit. That’s not good. You want to have that calculation as low as possible.

Therefore. Keep the account open, put the credit card in a drawer, and forget you have it. Or shred it. In any event, closing the card is NOT good for your credit score,

elbanditoroso ( 17490

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Really? It’s only $3000. I already have 1 credit card with a low balance and a student loan that I will only pay the minimum on forever out of spite.


Category: Credit

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