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changing Amex cards

ecoast7
New Visitor

changing Amex cards

I've had Amex charge cards for about 20 years - and they're useless, at least to me recently.  I've downgraded multiple times to the green card to lower my annual fee and am now ready to just cancel the card all together.  However, I'm concenred losing this signifcant credit hisory and age will hit my credit score hard.

 

If I switch from an Amex green (charge) card, to an Amex cash back card, will I lose or keep my credit history and age?  I'm assuming I will lose the 20 year age as I'd need to apply and have a credit check and new acct number for the entirely new account.

 

Anyone have any insignt into this?  Thanks in advance. 

Message 1 of 13
12 REPLIES 12
coldfusion
Community Leader
Super Contributor

Re: changing Amex cards

You can't product change from an AMEX charge card to an AMEX credit card.

 

If you close the card for reporting purposes it will show as being closed but will remain on your credit report for another ~10 years and the age will be factored in when calculating your AAoA.

 



(11/2021)
FICO 8 (EX) 806 (TU) 833 (EQ) 827
FICO 9 (EX) 828 (TU) 841 (EQ) 842

$1M+ club

Artist formerly known as the_old_curmudgeon who was formerly known as coldfusion
Message 2 of 13
M_Smart007
Epic Contributor

Re: changing Amex cards


@ecoast7 wrote:

I've had Amex charge cards for about 20 years - and they're useless, at least to me recently.  I've downgraded multiple times to the green card to lower my annual fee and am now ready to just cancel the card all together.  However, I'm concenred losing this signifcant credit hisory and age will hit my credit score hard.

 

If I switch from an Amex green (charge) card, to an Amex cash back card, will I lose or keep my credit history and age?  I'm assuming I will lose the 20 year age as I'd need to apply and have a credit check and new acct number for the entirely new account.

 

Anyone have any insignt into this?  Thanks in advance. 


Welcome!

 

depending on your profile? if you have no other older cards .. in 10 years, you could take a AAoA hit.

does not seem significant now, but if you feel in 10 years it won't matter. close it.

Don't pay a annual fee, if it aint helping you.

 

just a note: they don't always stay on for 10 years after close, some stay longer, some drop off sooner.

this is from my experience.

Message 3 of 13
RealityBites
Established Contributor

Re: changing Amex cards

There's a possibility that Amex will give you a credit card without a hard pull, but it will definitely be a new account and new history.





Message 4 of 13
ecoast7
New Visitor

Re: changing Amex cards

Thank you.  Rather than switching cards, I meant to say closing a charge card and opening a credit card - all w/in Amex.  Amex tell me in that scenario, the new credit card will still say "member since '00" but I'm concerned my credit score will be negatively affected. 

Message 5 of 13
ecoast7
New Visitor

Re: changing Amex cards

I have another card w/ similar age and have excellent credit.  However, my credit score seems to drop from time to time for no apparent reason - all accts paid on time, ratio's the same, etc. So I don't want to take a big hit, especially as a new home loan is on the horizon.

 

That said, I love cash back cards and have no time for these silly annual rate cards that I have no use for.  

 

Thank you.

Message 6 of 13
MaizeandBlue
Senior Contributor

Re: changing Amex cards


@ecoast7 wrote:

Thank you.  Rather than switching cards, I meant to say closing a charge card and opening a credit card - all w/in Amex.  Amex tell me in that scenario, the new credit card will still say "member since '00" but I'm concerned my credit score will be negatively affected. 


The Member Since date is purely cosmetic since the history from the old charge card account will not be transferred over to the new credit card.  American Express stopped back dating credit history to the credit bureaus in early 2015.

 

If you were to open a new credit card you can potentially be penalized in at least two ways; you'll lose points for a credit inquiry and for a new account reporting on your credit report.  The points lost in an inquiry typically variesbetween 0 - 10 points depending on the robustness of your credit profile and will be recovered within a year.  As a longstanding Amex member its possible that they will approve a new credit card without an inquiry. 

Also, depending on your credit profile a new account can cost you a few points on your FICO score since it initially represents increased risk.





Message 7 of 13
coldfusion
Community Leader
Super Contributor

Re: changing Amex cards

If you are considering applying for a mortgage within the next 12 months you should not be applying for credit cards.

 

Are the fluctuating scores that have you concerned your  FICO scores or your Vantage scores?



(11/2021)
FICO 8 (EX) 806 (TU) 833 (EQ) 827
FICO 9 (EX) 828 (TU) 841 (EQ) 842

$1M+ club

Artist formerly known as the_old_curmudgeon who was formerly known as coldfusion
Message 8 of 13
MaizeandBlue
Senior Contributor

Re: changing Amex cards

So you're saying you only have one Amex charge card and another credit card?

 

If that's accurate your scores will bounce around because every time the single credit card reports a balance you'll be penalized at least for "all your cards" having balances.  That's the reason its frequently said in these forums that to optimize your FICO scores you need three credit cards (not including charge cards) and allow only one to report a small balance to the credit bureaus.  This technique is referred to as AZEO or All Zero Except One.





Message 9 of 13
ecoast7
New Visitor

Re: changing Amex cards

Vantage scores - always over 800 but they fluctuate.  I have only three credit cards, but have high credit limits, spend little, always pay timely in full, have decent credit age, current loans, etc. 

 

Thank you for your response. 

Message 10 of 13
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