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I have a Sears credit card that I haven't used in 14 years. They have recently contacted me and told me that if I don't make a purchase by Nov. 30, that they will cancel my credit card. If they (not myself) are canceling my account that hasn't been used in years, will that hurt my credit score?

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  • I've heard (probably on a radio talk show), but can't substantiate, that department store cards hold less weight than a traditional Visa/MC/Discover. Sep 23 '15 at 19:07
  • Just out of curiosity, are they requiring you to make a purchase at Sears?
    – JohnB
    Sep 23 '15 at 22:50
  • @JohnB Where else can you use a Sears card (besides K-Mart?) Sep 24 '15 at 3:50
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    @Loren I've never had one, but from my understanding there are two types of store cards; one you can only use exclusively at the store, and the other can be used as a normal credit card
    – JohnB
    Sep 24 '15 at 13:01
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Potentially.

A large part of your credit score is the average age of your credit history. So if you have, say, four cards with ages of 14, 10, 9, and 3 years, your current average is 9 years, which is pretty good. If you were to close the 14-year card, then your average drops to 5.5 years, which isn't as great.

If you have a lot of credit lines and they're all as old or older, than it probably wouldn't matter as much.

Also, losing that credit line would drop your total credit line, which can affect your utilization percentage, another factor in your credit score. If your total credit line is 20k and you use 2k of that, that's 10% utilization, which is decent. If you then close a card that is 10k, reducing your total credit line to 10k, then your utilization becomes 20%, which isn't good.

If the credit line of the 14-year-old card isn't a large percentage of your total credit line, then it wouldn't affect it much.

Here's a good breakdown of the components of your credit score

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    FICO includes closed accounts in AAoA, so the age drop would be delayed until the account falls off
    – VBCPP
    Sep 23 '15 at 21:02
  • Doesn't it make a difference that he hasn't used it. I thought it only looked at active credit lines. If the last payment/charge was over 10 years ago it should have 0 effect on you credit score right? Sep 23 '15 at 22:45

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