How to Decode the Chase 5/24 Rule

Chase is the leader in the world of co-branded credit cards and issues many of the most desirable cards for airlines, hotels and travel rewards. Consumers often wonder about their acceptance criteria, and we only have rough estimates for income levels and credit scores. However, one unwritten set of guidelines is documented by a mountain of anecdotal evidence: the Chase 5/24 rule.

Simply put, Chase won’t give you a credit card if you’ve opened five or more bank cards in the past 24 months. When considering your credit profile, they look at all accounts you’ve been accepted for, not just Chase cards. The 5/24 rule has been in place since 2015, and it was implemented to prevent consumers from churning cards for signup bonuses.

Here’s everything you need to know to negotiate your way through the 5/24 restrictions:

Does the rule apply to all Chase cards?

As of this writing, yes. There were 10 or 12 cards that were previously exempt, but Chase closed that loophole in November 2018. Again, remember that the rule applies to all bank cards opened in the previous 24 months.

How do I calculate my 5/24 status?

The easiest way is to sign up for a service such as Credit Karma, which lists the opening dates of all your accounts. Most sources say you’re not under 5/24 until the first day of the 25th month after your fifth account was opened (if it was opened on October 15, 2017, for example, you’re free and clear on November 1, 2019).

What about business cards? Do they count?

Most business cards aren’t reported to the credit bureaus (including Chase), so they are considered exempt. Capital One and Discover do report them, and it always pays to check to be on the safe side.

If I’m listed as an authorized user on someone else’s card, does that count?

Unfortunately, yes. The conventional wisdom is that if you have five new accounts and one of them is an authorized user, you can call the reconsideration line and plead your case.

What about charge cards and store cards?

Charge cards do count against 5/24. If you have a card that’s restricted to a specific store (i.e., Macy’s), it supposedly doesn’t count; however, if the card has a payment network and can be used outside that particular store (Discover, Amex, etc.) it does count.

What about mortgage loans and car loans?

Most sources say no: Even though they are mostly funded by banks, they aren’t credit cards. If you’re thinking of applying for a mortgage, though, you’re well-advised not to open any new accounts for at least six months beforehand.

What if I apply for a card and get declined?

It doesn’t count—only if the account was opened.

If I opened an account and closed it one year later, does it count?


What about product changes, card upgrades and downgrades?

For the most part, card issuers do a soft pull in those circumstances, and only the results of hard pulls show up on your credit report. You should always ask before completing the transaction.

If you really want a specific card, is there any way to game the system?

In the past it was possible to get around 5/24 if you were a Chase Private Client, applied for a card in a branch rather than online, or had a pre-approved card online. This last point is a bit murky, and some consumers report success with the “Just for You” offers on the Chase site.

If I get down to 4/24, can I apply for two cards on the same day?

You can, but it’s probably not advisable. We’re seeing more reports of Chase arbitrarily closing down accounts. Most of those closures are done for legitimate reasons (such as excessive manufactured spending), but there’s no point in tempting them. A good rule of thumb is to space out your applications every six months or so.

Does Chase have a limit on the number of cards they’ll give you?

No, but the limit appears to be on the total amount of your credit in proportion to your stated income. If you claim an income of $100,000, Chase (and many other banks) will start to get nervous as your total credit exceeds $50,000.

How does 5/24 affect my credit card strategy?

As mentioned at the top of the post, Chase issues many of the most popular cards for airlines, hotel chains and travel rewards. If there are Chase cards you really want, prioritize getting those first. If you’re a novice, your best bet is to get the rewards cards for your preferred airline and hotel chain, along with a good all-purpose card such as the Sapphire Preferred. You can still apply for (and receive) other bank cards if you’re over 5/24, but that will further push back the date when you can once again apply to Chase.

Source: frugal travel guy

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.