When you apply for a credit card, you don't always know the terms and rate of the card until you get an acceptance offer from the bank or lender. You have every right to cancel a credit card before activation if you don't like the contract terms. Your FICO credit score takes a bit of a hit when you apply and the lender does a hard inquiry on your credit history.
More Cancellation Factors
You only lose a few points typically from the lender's credit check. Your credit score typically takes this hit whether you are approved or denied. Accepting the card and activating it -- or not -- isn't a factor. To avoid future lenders thinking you are desperately seeking credit, you should wait a couple of months after cancelling a card before applying for a new one. This approach makes it possible for the next lender to see that you closed that card.
- Bankrate.com: 5 Facts About Declining a New Credit Card
- AnnualCreditReport.com. "All about credit reports." Accessed Aug. 27, 2020.
- Discover. "FREE Credit Scorecard with your FICO Score." Accessed Aug. 27, 2020.
- myFICO. "Free Credit Scores Estimator: Get Your Estimated FICO Scores Range." Accessed Aug. 27, 2020.
- U.S. Congress. "H.R.627 - Credit CARD Act of 2009." Accessed Aug. 27, 2020.
Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.