Why the Chase 5/24 Rule Isn’t so Bad

by John Terry | Last Updated:  February 21, 2019

The Chase 5/24 Rule is a newer development to the points and miles game, but one that cardholders need to understand. If you have done any research, you have mostly like stumbled upon information about the Chase 5/24 rule. There’s mostly mass panic and negative articles about this. But I have some good news, it’s not as bad as it seems.

The Chase 5/24 Rule Explained

If you have opened five new credit cards in the past 24 months (from any bank, not just Chase), you will not be approved for a new credit card from Chase. Please note that this isn’t the only thing that can keep you from getting approved. Just like any credit card, your credit score and income all come into account.

This mysteriously started back in 2015 and has expanded ever since. While the rule initially affected Chase branded credit cards (Sapphire, Freedom, etc.) it is now being rolled out to partner cards such as the World of Hyatt card and the Southwest co-branded credit cards as well.

The reason for this is pretty simple: Chase is tired of people trying to game its system. I don’t blame them, to be honest. They have to protect their product.

A couple things to note – while nothing is official, there are data points to suggest that business credit cards do not count against your five cards. Similarly. if you have recently become an authorized user on someone else’s card, it will count against your card total.

Are you over the Chase 5/24 rule?

When looking this up, you need to know what will count against you when it comes to the 5/24 rule. This includes all personal credit cards (even if they are closed), all personal charge cards business cards that appear on your personal credit report, cards in which you are an authorized user, and specific store cards that are issued by banks (Visa, Citi, etc.).

Okay, so now you need to figure out what your 5/24 number is – how do you do it?

I have a spreadsheet of all the dates I’ve opened different credit cards. This is helpful to know when the annual fee will hit. It can also be useful when looking at new credit card applications.

If you don’t have that, I would suggest creating a free account with Credit Karma. It will show you all accounts that you have open including the date the account was opened.

If you have opened five new cards in the last 24 months, the Chase 5/24 rule is going to prevent you from opening another card.

Strategies to get around the Chase 5/24 rule

Assuming you’re new to this, applying for cards that are limited by the 5/24 rule need to be your first cards. We suggest in our Beginners Guide that cards like the Chase Sapphire and Freedom cards should be your first cards. Getting the Chase Trifecta should be at the top of your list even more due to this rule.

The other thing that you should be doing is keeping track of when you apply and get approved for cards. Being off by a month could potentially result in a useless hard credit pull and getting rejected for a card.

To be safe, you should give it an extra month to clear 5/24 when applying for a Chase card. No huge need to risk it.

Why this isn’t the end of the World

The points and miles game can be addicting. You’re going to want to apply for everything with huge bonuses, but you still need to be smart.

I would never apply for five new credit cards within 24 months. My focus is to maximize my point earnings through the credit cards I have, and I don’t want to raise any flags with the banks.

That’s a conservative way to think about it, but it’s why I don’t think the Chase 5/24 rule is that HUGE of a deal.

Don’t try to take advantage of banks, they can (and will) close your accounts and take your points.