Too Many Bank or National Revolving Accounts scores a minor penalty

Sometimes credit may be withheld when an applicant has too many bank or national revolving accounts. To clarify, the accounts must be open in order to contribute to this reason for credit denial.

If you have received this reason code on a credit report, or have been told that this is an issue by a mortgage representative, you can relax. This just might be the easiest credit issue to fix.

“Too Many Bank or National Revolving Accounts” Credit Bureau Risk Factor Codes
Equifax 4
Experian 4
TransUnion Not Factored
NextGen T2

All you have to do is to contact one of your credit card issuers and request that they close the account. Of course, the balance must be zero for the issuer to be able to close the account.

Choosing the right account to close is essential to make sure that you don’t inadvertently cause more harm than good. The account that you select to close should match several of these guidelines:

  • Zero balance. Creditors can inactivate a card at any time but cannot close the account until the balance hits zero.
  • Recently opened account. Any account opened within the last two years provides minimal benefit to your credit score, since duration contributes 15% towards the credit scoring formula.
  • Rarely used. An account that is rarely used may be closed due to inactivity anyways, so this could be a good target for closure.
  • Poor terms. An account that has a high interest rate, no rewards and an annual fee should be tops on your list for closure.
  • Other revolving accounts should have no or low debt balances. If you close a line of credit and have substantial debt on your other revolving accounts, then your credit utilization rate will skyrocket and cause severe damage to your credit score.

While it is true that having too many revolving accounts can interfere with approval of a mortgage or major credit account, there is generally no benefit to closing accounts until your prospective lender advises you to do so. If they want you to close an account, then feel free to do so to satisfy their request.

Closing accounts early just because you believe that you might have too many revolving accounts may be foolish. This has been confirmed by Fair Isaac spokesman Craig Watts.

Closing accounts to prevent this error reason should generally be done only in response to a specific request from a lender that you are applying with. Otherwise, you may end up causing much more harm than good.

Too many bank or national revolving accounts is Code 4 on Equifax and Experian credit scoring products. TransUnion does not factor this code in its scoring products. It is Code T2 on NextGen scores. For more information about credit scoring, see the complete list of credit score factors.

Kenneth Long
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Kenneth Long

President at Debtors Unite
Kenneth Long is President of Debtors Unite, Inc. as well as President and Vice Chairman for Vision Credit Education, Inc. He served as a regional coordinator for the North Carolina Saves campaign. Long co-founded the Wake EITC Coalition along with Family Resource Center of Raleigh.

Long is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Industrial Relations. He subsequently received his Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University. His Certificate in Financial Planning was issued by Florida State University.

Long has achieved the Accredited Credit Counselor and Accredited Financial Counselor certifications through the Association for Financial Counseling, Planning and Education. Long originally achieved the Certified Credit Counselor designation through the National Institute for Financial Education.

In addition to years of nonprofit leadership, Long has been an innovator in the field of volunteer tax return preparation programs. He assists volunteer associations and nonprofit organizations who seek to integrate credit counseling and asset-building programs with free personal income tax preparation. His approach to using free credit reports as both an incentive and a screening tool for placement into asset-building programs has been shared with members of the National Community Tax Coalition, the EITC-Carolinas Initiative of MDC, Inc. and nonprofit groups across the Carolinas.

Long assists members of our armed forces in the Carolinas, Iowa, Rhode Island, Georgia and Germany with financial readiness. Please support our Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Sailors!

Favorite quote:

"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."

Thomas Jefferson
Kenneth Long
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