Paying down or paying off credit cards is obviously great; but cancelling them is another matter. When you cancel a credit card, or other account, the “history” becomes closed and is no longer used to calculate your FICO if it was positive; the negative still remains on the credit report however; also; you have then reduced your available credit which means you still have too much “used” credit vs. “unused” credit and this ratio is also an important factor in credit scoring.

I would let them sit providing:

  1. you aren’t paying outrageous fees to have the card open;
  2. if you can hold off from using the cards;

Once you have several accounts paid off; then consider closing the one with the highest annual fees or highest interest rates so it impacts your FICO score the least.


i have a question about credit cards, paying them off, canceling them, and increasing credit score.

i did a balance transfer on a credit card. so i am confused is it better to keep the credit card w a zero balance (cut up in the safe box) or to cancel if since it is paid off? which way is better to the credit reports and fico score?

thanks in advance.. i know that this is the place to find out the correct answers.. you guys are great! keep up the excellent work!