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Closing Credit Cards

Closing Credit Cards

Over the past year you could say I may have went a little credit crazy (to say the least) lol. All together I have 13 accounts, but now I'm over the uphoria that went along with getting approved and shopping till i dropped, plus keeping track of all of these cards and their payments is ridiculous. Most of the cards are close to max, but the good thing is I've never missed or been late on any payments. I've stopped using the cards since christmas, and i plan to pay all of these accounts to a zero balance, closing all but 3 or 4 by the end of March 2014, but I'm unsure of how it will effect my credit score...here are the accounts.

 

Fingerhut - began at: 400, now 1400 (1000 bal)

Walmart - began at: 300, now 600 (500bal)

Macy's - began at: 300, now 800 (500bal)

Lowe's - began at: 300, now 500 (400bal)

Old Navy - began at: 300, now 400 (340bal)

Amazon - began at: 700, now 1200 (900bal)

Firestone - began at: 1000, now 1200 (980bal)

Bill me later - began at: 300, now 1000 (450bal)

Milestone rebuilder: 150 (121bal) (this card does not cli)

Milestone gold card: began at: 300, now 300 (280bal)

Capital One - began at: 500, now 750 (500bal)

Kays Joint - 1000 (890bal)

JcPenny - 200 (never increased), (200bal)

 

Any help is appreciated.

 

Thanks!

Message 1 of 7
6 REPLIES
Frequent Contributor

Re: Closing Credit Cards

Well the main thing about closing accounts is watching your ultilization %. If you pay off all the accounts, essentially you're at 0% ultilization. Thus, closing some accounts won't hurt your ultilization %. The only thing that it may affect is your aoaa. 

$5k$4.5k$2.8k$8k$500
FICO = EQ: 786 (1/15) TU:774 (2/15) EX: 767 (2/15)
Message 2 of 7
Established Contributor

Re: Closing Credit Cards

JCP is pretty good about auto-CLI. You just need to continue being a good debtor. My fiancée started out with a few hundred dollars and they've auto-CLI'd her over the years to a $3k limit.

 

Rather than close the cards, pay them off, and then put them in your sock drawer. Let them age and it will help you plenty down the road.

Scores2013-09-21Current
Equifax630 (LP)755 (CK)/749 (Quizzle)
Experian640 (FCR)FICO 707 (Amex)
TransUnion588 (CK)FICO 754 (Barclaycard)
Message 3 of 7
Senior Contributor

Re: Closing Credit Cards


tha1datshyns wrote:

Most of the cards are close to max, but the good thing is I've never missed or been late on any payments. I've stopped using the cards since christmas, and i plan to pay all of these accounts to a zero balance, closing all but 3 or 4 by the end of March 2014, but I'm unsure of how it will effect my credit score...here are the accounts.

 


That's still not a good thing.  The immediate impact on closing an account is the hit to utilization.  Considering that you're at 74% with several cards maxed or near maxed, I'd recommend significantly dropping your utilization first.  Get it under the generally recommended 30% max before closing anything.  You don't need any additional hits to utilization.  If you want to see how closing an account affects your utilization then just do the math.

 

DEFINITELY DO NOT CLOSE ANYTHING WITH A BALANCE.  You'll be in even worse shape if you do.

Message 4 of 7
Valued Contributor

Re: Closing Credit Cards

I'd pay off your cards first of all, and pay special attention to the ones that are near the limit.

 

If you close some cards, it will have no immediate effect on your AAoA.

 

Message 5 of 7

Re: Closing Credit Cards

Thanks Everyone for your insight. I'll make sure I have everything paid off before I attempt to close anything. 

Message 6 of 7
Highlighted
Senior Contributor

Re: Closing Credit Cards


takeshi74 wrote:

tha1datshyns wrote:

Most of the cards are close to max, but the good thing is I've never missed or been late on any payments. I've stopped using the cards since christmas, and i plan to pay all of these accounts to a zero balance, closing all but 3 or 4 by the end of March 2014, but I'm unsure of how it will effect my credit score...here are the accounts.

 


That's still not a good thing.  The immediate impact on closing an account is the hit to utilization.  Considering that you're at 74% with several cards maxed or near maxed, I'd recommend significantly dropping your utilization first.  Get it under the generally recommended 30% max before closing anything.  You don't need any additional hits to utilization.  If you want to see how closing an account affects your utilization then just do the math.

 

DEFINITELY DO NOT CLOSE ANYTHING WITH A BALANCE.  You'll be in even worse shape if you do.


+1

Message 7 of 7