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Essentially I have like 8 Department store Credit Cards and 1 good Bank Credit Card. I hardly ever use the Department Store Credit Cards but use the bank credit card often. I get them because they tempt me with these 10% offers and I get em just to make large purchases and never use them again. I’ve never been late on payments and generally don’t carry a balance over the next month. Do having these multiple credit cards affect or lower my credit score????

7 Thoughts on Do the more credit cards you have affect your credit score negatively? Regardless if they have a balance?
  1. Reply
    November 8, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    Yeah, you have a lot of credit available to you. If you were to max em all in one month you might find it hard to make all the payments.

  2. Reply
    Random Precision
    November 8, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    They lower your credit score because even if you are not using them, you could, which would make it more difficult for you to meet your obligations. Cancel cards you never use to improve your score, and keep the others paid in full.

  3. Reply
    November 8, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Even though you may have no balance on the cards, it hurts your credit score since its available credit that you can tap into and get into debt.

  4. Reply
    Candice A
    November 8, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    This should not. As long as you’re not applying for multiple cards in a short period of time, which throws up a red flag for credit bureaus. In fact, closing all these cards at once can negatively impact your credit score because one of the things they look at is the percentage of your total available credit that you use every month. If you’re using $ 1000 and your total of all you cards is $ 20,000, then you’re using less than 10% and this is very good. BUT if you close all but one with an available credit of $ 1500, then you’re using over 60%, which can look irresponsible. Try googleing “credit score tips” and it will come up with lots of sites with different information on improving your credit score.

  5. Reply
    November 8, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    They don’t necessarily lower your credit score but the available credit balance can affect a financial institutions decision. Here’s why.

    Let’s say that on each of your 8 cards you have an available balance of $ 2,000. Plus you have an available credit line of $ 5,000 on your ‘good bank card’ of which you are carring a balance of $ 1,500. This gives you a total available credit amount of $ 19,500 which you can ‘charge up’ at any given moment.

    If you are applying for a loan/mortgage they will consider your dept to income ratio and they will also consider your maximum possible debt to income ratio. Your current ratio may be great but when they factor in the possiblity of you running up all the cards … your debt to income ratio could suffer greatly.

    So you can see why having lots of CCs with high available balances can negatively affect a loan decision.

    Hope this helps and good luck!

    PS: My suggestion; close the CC’s you don’t plan on using and keep just one or two just for emergencies or those larger purchases you want to finance. The selection of which to keep should be based on the merchandise/services that they can buy along with the annual interest rate.

  6. Reply
    Kevin K
    November 8, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    You can have as many cards as you like, the FICO credit scoring formula mainly considers (1) your credit -to- credit limit ratio and (2) the number of accounts with a balance. Both individually and collectively, so keep that in mind. I know people with 5-10 credit cards that have excellent credit, because they hardly use them. Most lenders know to have a good credit score you need several credit cards, so they don’t hold that against you – as long as you use them wisely.

  7. Reply
    November 8, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    While the bureaus won’t make exact scoring procedures clear there is an affect on having multiple accounts but not negatively. As long as they are paid on time and balances are low they are not hurting you. I have however seen scores drop after closing paid off accounts. It reduces your total available limit – debt ratio which can drop your score.

    Here is some additional info. Hope this helps.

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