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No. of Recommendations: 6
One option is to keep the accounts but cut up and dispose of the cards. The accounts are there helping your credit score but you have no easy way of accessing them. You could of course call and have the cards replaced but that usually takes a couple of days at least. If you have the account memorized you could still use them online, but if you are like me a 16 digit number tends to fade quickly with time.

Regarding what is best for you only you can decide.

Personally I consider things like my phone bill a debt, and do not believe anyone is truly "debt" free. The most you can achieve is to eliminate any loans and revolving debt. I have done this, plus I run a credit balance on most of my utility bills. Yet I still have two credit cards that I use for almost everything including my phone bill and other utilities. They both get paid automatically in full each month. (I must admit that I did have a hiccup in this plan a couple of months ago.) However, I could not care less what my credit score is as I pay cash for cars, do not rent, and have no need for any revolving debt.

The advice to keep an account open presupposes that you will "need" access to credit in the future. Only you, and your spouse, can decide that. Some people have gone cold turkey closed every account and never looked back. There are many of that type that populate this board and they are quite successful. There are others more like me that use credit cards and pay them in full each month. WE are also successful. Then their are a few that use short term low interest rate finance offers to fund investments, and some of them are also successful. The point is YOU MUST FIND OUT WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. I suggest that to do so you think carefully about what your goals are. "Getting out of debt" has a nice ring but means little with regard to goals that really matter, "secure retirement, enjoying life, providing college for kids, etc." Think more about these life goals and how having or not having credit cards will influence your actions in the future as you work toward that goal.

And do not take any comments from this board as gospel or as a personal attack. Most if not all are genuinely trying to help. But we can be a prickly lot.....
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