This is a quick follow-up to my previous post. As I’ve mentioned a few times before, Chase has become very strict when it comes to approval of some of their cards. This topic had been discussed in many blogs, but what I want to do here is summarize what we know/don’t know at this point. You can check this Flyertalk thread and Wiki for reference and follow the latest developments. This is what you need to be aware of:
1) The 5/24 rule is real.
What it means is if you’ve applied for 5 or more cards from any bank (not just Chase) in the last 24 months, you will be automatically denied.
2) If you are listed as an authorized user on someone else’s card, it counts toward the total.
The good news is, you can call and plead your case. If you explain to the rep that you are not the primary cardholder, there is a decent chance your application will be reconsidered.
3) The only cards where 5/24 rule applies are Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Freedom.
There was inconclusive data on Chase Ink Plus. Well, over the last few months consensus has emerged that business cards are not affected. An update: Doctor of Credit reports that in a near future the same rule will go into affect for business cards as well.
4) Co-branded cards are also not affected…for now.
An update: this rule will apply to all co-branded cards sometime in April of 2016.
I can attest to that because I was approved for Hyatt Signature Visa in spite of my colorful recent credit history. Of course, that could easily change in a near future. But at the moment, you should be OK applying for cards like Chase British Airways Signature Visa and others. That doesn’t, however, guarantee you will be approved.
5) Chase has become somewhat strict when it comes to approval of all of their cards.
The consensus is that it’s better to wait it out when it comes to applications. So, if you get the dreaded pending status, sit tight, especially if you recently applied for a bunch of cards. Many times the application will be approved on its own. If you call, a human CSR will have to review it, which could spell trouble. Actually, my policy with all applications is to wait, and it has worked fairly well for me so far.
6) You may have success applying for CSP and Freedom if you do it inside Chase branch.
Once again, there are no guarantees, but it could be worth a shot. There are some reports of success, but the app could also go into pending status and eventually get denied. You won’t know until you try. If you happen to have a sizable deposit in Chase checking or savings account, it might be worth it to get a branch manager involved who could plead the case on your behalf. The current bonus on Chase Sapphire Preferred is nothing to sneeze at, so if you live near Chase branch and know a banker personally, it’s worth a shot.
7) The old rules still apply.
You are only eligible for new sign-up bonus if you have previously not received it in the last 24 months. It also goes without saying that if you had a lot of credit inquiries in the last 2 years, it will diminish your chances of approval.
8) Relax and don’t sweat it.
Even if you can’t get approved for CSP, there are many other decent bonuses you can consider. If you really want Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can alternate applications with your spouse to make sure your total inquiries count in the last two years drops below five. Then go for it. Don’t add each other as an authorized user and be picky when getting new cards. Banks are becoming smarter at spotting unprofitable customers. Make each inquiry count!