How to Handle Old Credit Card Accounts. Do you want to know how to handle old credit card accounts? Well, users also search for “Old Credit Card Machine. Look, if you want to know all about how one can handle old credit card accounts, then you are in the right place.
I am going to be explaining bit by bit how you can handle your old credit card accounts, so you should do well by reading each page and do not skip any, because you may then skip important information that will be very useful.
How to Handle Old Credit Card Accounts
If you have a credit card that you simply do not use, you might then be tempted to cancel the account. However, this is actually the opposite of what you should do, mostly because of the way your credit score is determined.
The first thing you should know is that the average length of your credit history accounts for only 15% of your FICO score. Closing older accounts will then shorten this average, and it can also work against you in terms of your score.
Second, you should be aware that the amounts you owe in relation to your credit limits account for another 30% of your FICO score. This is then often referred to as your credit utilisation ratio. When you close an account that is no longer in use, you are then reducing the amount of credit available to you, which can then increase your utilisation into a range that can hurt you. This also causes your credit score to go down.
Most experts also recommend keeping your credit utilisation below 30% for the best results, which means you should only have $3,000 in debt or less for every $10,000 in open revolving credit.
If you do not want to hold on to a specific credit card for whatever reason, there are also other options worth considering, such as the following:
Consider downgrading your card.
Some consumers can then decide to close accounts they are not using in order to avoid an annual fee, but this is not always required. Depending on your card issuer, you might then be able to downgrade the credit card you have with an annual fee to a different card product that does not charge one.
To downgrade your credit card to a no-fee option, you should then call your card issuer using the number on the back of your credit card and ask.
Upgrade to an Unsecured Card
Secured credit cards are also a great asset for consumers looking to boost their credit scores. However, if you have grown out of your secured credit card, you should ask your credit issuer if it can then upgrade you to an unsecured credit card. Some of the issuers can then have options in place to graduate cardholders from secured credit cards, but if you find yourself in a position where you feel ready for the next step in your financial journey, do not simply cancel the card; you should call your issuer and ask for an upgrade, given they have unsecured options available.
Keep the card for small purchases.
If you are not interested in upgrading or downgrading your card, but you are not also quite ready to take scissors to it either, you should then consider keeping the account open by using the card occasionally. You could also simply put one small charge on it every month, say at the gas station or grocery store, in order to keep the account active.
You could also use it for any recurring payments, such as a streaming service or newspaper subscription, and set up automatic payments so your balance gets paid on time every month. This is an even more seamless way to keep the account active with little effort required from the cardholder.
What to Do With Expired Debit and Credit Cards
If your credit card or debit card is simply plastic and it is also past its expiration date, getting rid of it is very easy. All you should or have to do with expired credit and debit cards are simply cut them up with scissors and throw them away in the trash. Some paper shredders also have a slot for credit and even debit cards, which makes it easy to destroy them along with other important documents you no longer need.
Disposing of metal credit cards
If you have a metal credit card like the Platinum Card® from American Express or the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, on the other hand, you will then have to take an alternative path to dispose of your card.
Most metal credit card issuers will also destroy your card if you send it back to them. If you would then like a prepaid envelope sent to you to mail yours back, or if you simply want the best address to send it to, call the number on the back of your card to make this request.
If you do not want to mail your card and you live near a branch, you might also be able to drop your credit card off for disposal. Local bank branches might not even destroy metal credit cards themselves, but they will then know where to send them.
Join the World of Expired Card Hobbyists
Interestingly, expired credit cards have become a collector’s item of sorts—at least for some people. There’s also the American Credit Card Collectors Society, whose stated mission is to “be a resource for the credit card collector as well as a communication link for members.”
According to the group rules, older cards are generally worth more money, as are cards in excellent condition that have never been signed. Rare credit cards are even worth more in general, especially if they feature a celebrity or have something special about them.
Your expired Chase Freedom Flex℠ might then not be worth a premium, but who knows? If you simply stick your old cards in a sock drawer long enough, perhaps they will then be worth something someday.
How to Find Old Credit Card Accounts
Here is another question you might then find yourself asking: What if you have open credit card accounts you forgot about? Without a physical card, it can then be difficult to remember the details, like your account number, the type of card you had, or the card issuer.
To find old credit card accounts, then you should simply start by looking at your credit reports. Go to AnnualCreditReport.com, where you can get free credit reports from all three credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion). Consumers can also access their credit reports for free each week due to COVID-19, which is in effect until April 20, 2022.
Once you then have your credit reports, you can simply look them over for old accounts you might even have forgotten about while you check for accuracy overall. If you find you have credit cards you have forgotten about, you can then decide whether to call the card issuer to ask for a new physical card—or do nothing at all.
What Should I Do With Old Credit Card Accounts?
All you simply have to do with expired credit and debit cards is to cut them up with scissors and throw them away in the trash. Some paper shredders also have a slot for credit and debit cards, which makes it very easy to destroy them along with other important documents you no longer need.
Is There Any Reason to Keep Old Credit Cards?
Tax-related expenses are a very important reason for you to keep credit card statements for longer than the period of 60 days. This might be especially helpful for those using business credit cards. The IRS retains the right to audit anyone’s financial history for up to a period of six years.
Should You Ever Close Out Your Oldest Credit Card Account?
“The overall increase in your utilisation rate is simply the most important thing for you to consider when you are trying to decide whether you should simply close an account.” Another reason experts recommend you keep your oldest credit card is simply that the average age of your accounts will decrease.
How Do I Close Out Old Credit Accounts?
Call your credit card issuer to then cancel and also confirm that your balance on the account is $0. Mail a certified letter to your card issuer to cancel the account. In this letter, you request that written confirmation of your $0 balance and even closed account status be mailed to you.