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If you're in credit card debt and trying to cut back on your spending, closing your credit card and cutting it up might be the best choice you can make. But did you know that closing a credit card has an effect on your credit score? Fortunately, there are steps you can take when closing a credit card that can help protect your credit score.

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1. Collect All the Rewards You're Owed

If you have a credit card that pays you points, airline miles, or other rewards, collect them before you close the card. Sure, they technically are yours even after you've closed the account, but you might have a tough time collecting. If you need to spend more to reach the next level of points, get out a calculator. Figure out whether you'll be paying more in interest than the points are worth before you decide to stick it out.

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