Update 12/2018: All Chase cards are now impacted by the 5/24 rule.
If you’re just getting into opening credit cards for the sign-up bonuses, you may have seen references to Chase’s 5/24 rule. Basically, if you’ve applied for 5 or more credit or charge cards from any bank in the past 24 months, you will not be approved for most of Chase’s credit cards.
This rule was implemented to keep churners at bay and boy is it frustrating!
The 5/24 rule is not about the number of hard inquiries on your credit report but rather the actual number of credit cards you have opened in the past two years. There are occasions where people do get approved–I myself was approved for Chase Freedom while already 5/24–but this seems to be rare. While applying for a card and getting denied will not add to your 5/24 count, you will have to decide if you want to risk adding a hard inquiry to your credit report without getting the benefit of having a new credit card sign-up bonus. Basically, a denial will not impact your 5/24 count for Chase but it can lower your credit score by a few points.
What Cards Fall Under the 5/24 Rule
If you are new to churning, it’s recommended that you apply for 5 of the following Chase credit cards first:
- Chase Freedom
- Chase Freedom Unlimited
- Chase Sapphire Preferred
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase Slate
- Chase Ink Cash
- Chase Ink Preferred
- Chase Southwest Plus personal card
- Chase Southwest Premier personal card
- Chase Southwest Premier business card
- Chase Marriott Premier personal card
- Chase United MileagePlus Club Card
- Chase United MileagePlus Explorer personal card
- Chase United MileagePlus Explorer business card
What Cards Don’t Fall Under the 5/24 Rule
You can be approved for the following cards from Chase even if you’ve opened 5 or more credit cards in the past 24 months:
- Chase AARP
- Chase Amazon
- Chase British Airways
- Chase Disney
- Chase Hyatt
- Chase IHG
- Chase Marriott Premier business card
- Chase Ritz-Carlton
Keeping Track of Your 5/24 Status
It’s a good idea to sign up for a free credit tracker to make sure your accounts are in good standing and there are no errors on your report. Credit Karma provides weekly TransUnion and Equifax updates. You can also check Experian for free through a separate service. Since all credit cards should appear on the reports by all three bureaus, you can look at any of the three to determine when you will be under 5/24. I’ve noticed a delay in some of my credit cards showing up so make sure to factor in any additional new credit cards.
How Can I Avoid 5/24?
While there are no hard and fast rules for avoiding this, targeted mailings with offer codes may be one way around it. People have the most luck if they are pre-approved for a card in branch. However, online pre-approval is unlikely to help if you are over 5/24. Additionally, people with Chase Private Client status ($250,000 or more in Chase banking services) may be able to circumvent this rule.
Update 12/8/2016: It appears Chase Private Client status no longer helps.
Being an Authorized User Counts Too
If you are listed as an authorized user on someone else’s credit card, this WILL count toward your 5/24 count. You can call Chase’s reconsideration line at 1-888-270-2127 to try to explain this. Depending on who you talk to, they may be able to overlook the authorized user account. Doctor of Credit also wrote about how to remove authorized user accounts from your credit report.
Chase’s 5/24 rule is unfortunate but not the end of the world even if it seemed that way at first! Unfortunately, it has forced me to slow down on earning Chase Ultimate Rewards points. Make sure to apply for Chase cards first if you haven’t opened many credit cards in the past few years. While I’m well over 5/24 at this point, I figure I can reset my 5/24 count when I take a break from credit cards in a few years in preparation for applying for a mortgage.
What are your strategies when it comes to apply for credit cards through Chase?
Last Updated 12/31/2018