More credit can be good credit. Don't be afraid to ask for a credit line increase, which will improve your credit utilization ratio. "If you have a card you like a lot and use a lot, and are good at paying it off, ask for a credit line increase," says Weston. However, proceed with caution: "You should not call and ask unless you're a really good card holder," says Harzog. If you don't have a good credit history and ask for a line increase, the bank might see you as a credit risk and reduce your limit. "It can backfire, so be careful," Harzog warns.
Keep your cards active. Simply having a credit card is not enough to maintain a good credit score. "It's important to use the card, even if you just buy lunch. That way, it will get reported," says Harzog. "You want to show that you can use credit responsibly." So don't close credit card accounts when you're not using them; that will bring your score down. Keep them active, so that you have as much credit history established as possible. Says Sprauve of FICO: "The longer you have an account, the better."