What would you do for $50k?

I called one of my older credit card companies to close the account, for a credit card that I’ve had since 1988. It’s accumulated a credit line of $50,000 over all these years. But listening to Dave Ramsey podcasts has slowly given me a financial education that I have so long avoided and been disinterested in, well, at least to get rid of credit cards. I’ll get rid of one of them at a time; and pay my credit charges on time. I do more and more my shopping online rather than in person – traffic and gas prices are less and less fun.

So one last appeal they made was to give me an interest-free check for the entire amount of my credit line, and it’d be 0% interest for a whole year, until September 2006. Pretty enticing, isn’t it? The customer service rep offered some suggestions: home renovation, vacation, plasma television (no, she didn’t say electronics, though that would have inched me a little closer.) I didn’t ask for the fine print (Would I have to make minimum monthly payments? What would be the APR after next September?) and stayed focused on getting the cancellation through.

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  1. Bob says:

    DJ, remember that getting rid of older credit cards is a little harder on your credit scores. The general advice is to get rid of your most recently acquired credit cards and keep 2 or maybe 3 around. The longer you have a credit card, the better it affects your credit score because longevity is good. Also remember that having no credit is almost as bad as having bad credit.