Does canceling inactive credit cards help your credit score?

I am a senior credit counselor, and actually closing your cards will hurt your score, the way your score is calculated is by how much available credit you have in comparison to how much debt you are currently carrying. If you have the cards with zero balance and available credit on them, then raises your available credit to total debt ratio, thus increasing your score. However, after you have purchased your home, you might want to consider closing the accounts because of the risk of identity theft. Or look into the new credit monitoring services, they are very inexpensive and usually offered through the credit bureaus. They will let you know if anyone checks your credit or if any changes have occurred.

Actually, it can hurt your score. the FICO score looks at length of credit history (taking an average of all credit card accounts). If it is an older account, it would likely hurt your score. Closing a newer account would be best.

If you go to MyFico.com, you can look at what factors into your score. They suggest to leave accounts open. This of course varies from person to person. If you have 10 credit card accounts and wish to close one of the newer ones or if you would like to consolidate some of the cards, it might be a good idea......Someone with fewer accounts and a shorter history should keep them open.

Most important thing to remember.....everyone's credit score is calculated differently (i.e. based on the characteristics of their history). What is a good move for some, may not be for all.