Is it best to close open credit cards or leave them open? I was wondering this because I want to keep my score high. I have heard that if you close them, it could hurt your score.

Answered on March 27, 2019
Updated on March 27, 2019
The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.
Amy Miller Amy Miller

First of all, it is important to remember about your debt-to-credit ratio or credit utilization ratio that is the amount of debt you currently have vs. the amount of credit available, as it determines a third part of your FICO score. When you close a credit card account, the total amount of credit that you have available decreases and affects your credit score in a bad way. It’s usually recommended to keep your debt-to-credit ratio under 30%.
Then, if your account was in good standing, positive information that is added to your credit reports every month may also suffer. However, in case you still have some valid credit cards with no balance carried, they will continue to bring good records to your credit report.
What is more, canceling an old credit card account can also make it seem like you have a shorter credit history which may also lower your credit score. But if you are going to cancel one of your new cards, this move will more likely not affect your credit history length.
In addition, unused credit cards with no balance and with zero annual fee may improve your credit score. That’s why we would recommend avoiding canceling your existing credit card, especially if you own it for a long time and make payments on time. But keep in mind that in this case you will still have to use that credit card from time to time so that it is not closed.

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User Comments about This Question


If you need to get cash, we wouldn’t recommend you consider credit cards, since they charge additional fees for cash advance. You’d better pay attention to personal loans. They generally offer lower interest rates than credit card's APRs. After the approval, money is deposited to your account very quickly – typically 2 business days.
This card may be a good option for someone who shops at Apple a lot. It has complicated special financing offers with tiers for purchases made at Apple. If you want to get this card for a one-time big purchase, there definitely are better offers out there.
Unfortunately, the Barclaycard CashForward World Mastercard credit card is no longer issued by the bank. That's why you cannot find it and cannot apply for it. You can apply for a different credit card though. You can get a rewards credit card that will allow you to earn rewards on all your purchases and redeem them towards any expenses. There are a lot of great credit cards that can be more rewarding than this card. Just make sure your credit score is good enough to get it.

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There is a credit card for any credit and for any purpose. Whether you want to start building your credit from scratch or earn rewards on purchases, save on gas or travel for free, you can find a good credit card offer for that.