Are there any factors one needs to be aware of before cancelling a credit card? Reason for cancellation is high annual fee, but will cancelling it hurt the credit score or have other side effects?

1 Answer 1


Theoretical cons don't outweigh practical pros. Unless you have some reason to actively suspect that your credit score is marginal enough that this will hurt you, AND expect to need to borrow a substantial amount soon so the credit score would matter, I'd say killing it makes perfect sense.

  • Thanks. Do you know how 'soon' is too soon? How long does a credit score keep being affected because of cancelling a card, having a new card etc? 2 years?
    – Victor123
    Commented Aug 5, 2014 at 19:11
  • See all the similar discussion under "Related" at right, especially money.stackexchange.com/questions/16811/… and money.stackexchange.com/questions/3314/… and money.stackexchange.com/questions/9185/…
    – keshlam
    Commented Aug 5, 2014 at 20:51
  • Cancelling the card doesn't hurt your credit score so much. It is two main factors 1) If you have had it a while, it reduces your average credit length; and more importantly 2) It drops your total credit available which raises your credit utilization. If you replace it with another card having a similar limit you can mitigate this to some extent.
    – JohnFx
    Commented Aug 5, 2014 at 21:31
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    If 20 active accounts really is a scoring target, our banking system need an overhaul rather desperately. All I can say is that I've rarely had more than three before the mortgage, and rarely more than four since (one of which I'm going to kill soon), and my credit rating has certainly not suffered. Rather than trying to game the system, I've just demonstrated myself to be a reliable payer and a good risk... and seriously, I recommend that as a much less stressful way to live.
    – keshlam
    Commented Aug 5, 2014 at 22:13
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    I wish I knew how to game the system as well as joetaxpayer
    – Victor123
    Commented Aug 6, 2014 at 14:25

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