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Creditors and Bankruptcy/Should I close my credit card account with a zero balance?


Hi Leon.

I have a Citi card with a $13,200 limit. The balance is zero. I was about to close it, thinking that would help my credit score, but then I realized it might not. I wonder if you can tell me what I should do? Close it? Or leave it open?

Here's my deal according to

* Current score: 756
* Was 774 in July.
* I noticed two erroneous accounts on my Transunion report that should have been closed. I went through the process of correcting that.
* Instead of my score going up--it dropped to 750! (Blew my mind.)
* Since then, I got an auto loan ($5,400) that I'm paying off. Four months--no missed payments.
* Overall credit history: never a missed payment in 29 credit cards.
All credit card accounts are closed except for two:

(1) Citi with a huge $13K limit (using 0%).
(2) Discover with a $3,100 balance (using 89%) that I am steadily paying off.

I know my score will increase as long as I pay these two regularly. But what do you think will happen if I close the Citi card with the $13,200 limit. I am never going to use it again--but I got burned the last time I closed two stupid accounts!

Would love your advice.


Dear Chris,

There is no statistical difference between having a credit score of of 756 vs. 774. Your credit is impeccable.

I would keep the Citi card account open.

I think the auto loan hurt your score, and if it did, the damage is not significant. But, $5400 is a very small auto loan. An auto loan in that amount looks suspicious, in my opinion. It looks like a car title loan, or else a very old used car. Either way, not the kind of transaction that would normally be seen from a person who is financially solid.

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Los Angeles Bankruptcy Attorney Leon Bayer


I can answer all questions relating to debt collection, credit reporting problems, credit scores, bankruptcy, debt settlements, debt settlement scams, and dealing with debt collectors. For many years I have been one of your volunteer experts for the topic "Bankruptcy Law". I would like to receive more questions. I'm thinking that many relevant questions get asked under this catagory as well as my own. See my stats, below: Los Angeles Bankruptcy Lawyer Leon D. Bayer U.S. Available View Profile Ask A Question View Past Answers Knowledgeability9.96 Clarity of Response9.93 Politeness9.97 Response Time(hr)14.6 --Last 90 Days(hr)7.6 Total Questions1119


34 years as a practicing bankruptcy attorney, published book author on topics of bankruptcy and foreclosure. See,


BA degree, J.D., admitted to California Bar in 1979.

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President, 1995-1996-Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum; Member - Los Angeles County Bar Association Committee on Commercial Law & Bankruptcy, 1988. Law Advisory Commission-Personal & Small Business Bankruptcy Law of the State Bar of California, 1996-2000

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