When you should get rid of that old credit card

(WILX) – Having a credit card for a long time helps your credit score. Older credit cards, even with no balance, increase the average age of your accounts, which improves your credit score.

Sara Rathner, personal finance expert at Nerdwallet, says if you close an old card, it could lower your score by a few points, mainly because it lowers your total available credit limit. Rathner says that in general, experts recommend spending no more than 30% of your total credit limit during a billing cycle.

Less than 10% is ideal. So if your credit limit is suddenly lowered but your spending stays the same, it’s that much easier to overspend.

“That being said, if you don’t want to pay an annual fee on a card, if you’re not getting more value from it, you want to make room in your life for a different credit card,” Rathner said. “You can consider closing the old map.”

Especially if you are charged an annual fee for a card you rarely use. If so, before you close it, call the company and see if they can move you to another card at no cost.

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