Applying For Chase Ink Business Cards: What You Need To Know

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Chase has some of the all around best credit cards, in terms of the welcome bonuses, return on spend, and perks. This is especially true with their business credit cards.

For example, the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card has the single best welcome bonus of any credit card right now, and I’d argue is the most well-rounded business credit card. Meanwhile the no annual fee Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card and Ink Business UnlimitedSM Credit Card have their best ever welcome bonuses right now, and are generally great cards for maximizing points.

I have all three of these cards, and in this post wanted to talk a bit about who is eligible for these cards, how you can go about acquiring all three cards, etc.

Who is eligible for a Chase business card card?

Eligibility for a small business credit card is easier than you might think. You don’t need to have a big company, and don’t even need to be incorporated. Even a small side business with limited business revenue makes you eligible for a business credit card, even if you’re just selling things on eBay, do some consulting on the side, have a rental property, or do freelancing, for example.

It goes without saying that you should always answer credit card applications truthfully.

What are the basic restrictions of applying for a Chase business credit card?

Chase’s general restrictions on applying for cards are as follows:

  • There’s no hard limit on how many Chase credit cards you can be approved for, but rather there’s often a maximum amount of credit they’re willing to extend you, in which case you may be asked to switch around your credit limits on some cards in order to facilitate an approval
  • There are inconsistent data points as to how long you have to wait between applications; my recommendation is to wait 30 days between Chase business card applications to be on the safe side
  • You won’t be approved for most Chase business credit cards (including the Ink Business PreferredInk Business Cash, and Ink Business Unlimited if you’ve opened five or more new card accounts in the past 24 months; the good news is that when you’re approved for a Chase business credit card, that application shouldn’t count towards the 5/24 limit, given that it won’t show up on your personal credit report
  • You can hold each of the different “Ink” cards, so if you have the Ink Business Preferred you’re eligible for the Ink Business Cash and Ink Business Unlimited

How should you fill out a Chase business credit card application?

Those who already have business credit cards are probably familiar with the application process, but for those who aren’t, here’s what you need to know. It can be intimidating to apply for your first business credit card, though even if you’re a small business or sole proprietorship, you should be eligible.

When applying for a Chase business card, you’ll be asked the following questions, in addition to the typical personal questions about your income, Social Security Number, etc.:

  • Legal name of business
  • Business mailing address & phone number
  • Type of business
  • Tax identification number
  • Number of employees
  • Annual business revenue/sales
  • Years in business

If you’re a sole proprietorship, how should you approach this? First of all, and most importantly, answer everything truthfully. I think the concern that a lot of people have is that they think they need an incorporated business, a separate office, etc., in order to be considered for a business card. That’s not the case:

  • You can use your name as the legal name of your business
  • The business mailing address and phone number can be the same as your personal address and phone number
  • If you’re a sole proprietorship, you can select that as your type of business
  • For the tax identification number, you can put your social security number
  • For number of employees, saying just one is perfectly fine
  • For your annual business revenue, there’s nothing with saying zero, or whatever the amount is
  • For years in business, there’s no shame in saying that it’s new, that it has been 1-2 years, etc.

How hard is it to get approved for a Chase business credit card?

When it comes to getting approved for business credit cards, Chase certainly isn’t the easiest issuer. In general I find American Express business cards to be easiest to be approved for. However, getting approved for Chase business cards isn’t as tough as some people assume, at least if you have excellent credit.

In my experience instant approvals on Chase business cards are fairly rare, so don’t be worried if the approval doesn’t come through right away. You’ll usually get a pending decision response, and then eventually (hopefully) an approval.

For example, I’ve had the Ink Business Cash, for years, and in the past few months was approved for both the Ink Business Preferred and Ink Business Unlimited. In both cases I didn’t get an instant decision.

What are the best Chase business credit cards right now?

There are three especially worthwhile Chase cards to consider right now.

First there’s the Ink Business Preferred, which I consider to have the best welcome bonus of any credit card out there at the moment:

  • Welcome bonus: 80,000 Ultimate Rewards points after spending $5,000 within three months
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Return on spend: 3x points on the first $150,000 of combined purchases per account anniversary year on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable, phone services, and advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines

Then there’s the Ink Business Cash, which has its best ever welcome bonus at the moment:

  • Welcome bonus: $500 cash back (which can potentially be converted into 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points) after spending $3,000 within three months
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Return on spend: 5x points on the first $25,000 of combined purchases per account anniversary year at office supply stores, and on internet, cable, and phone services, as well as 2x points on the first $25,000 of combined purchases per account anniversary year at restaurants and gas stations

Then there’s the Ink Business Unlimited, which also has its best ever welcome bonus at the moment:

  • Welcome bonus: $500 cash back (which can potentially be converted into 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points) after spending $3,000 within three months
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Return on spend: 1.5x points on all purchases

Is there an ideal order in which to apply for Chase cards?

Given that applying for Chase business cards won’t count towards your 5/24 limit, in general I’d recommend applying for Chase business cards before applying for Chase personal cards.

If it were me, I’d pick up the Ink Business Preferred first (since I consider it to be the most well rounded of the three cards), and then would pick up either the Ink Business Cash and/or Ink Business Unlimited, depending on whether you value the 5x points in select categories, or 1.5x points across the board, more.

Bottom line

Chase has some fantastic credit cards, and in particular, they have great business credit cards. This includes the card that I consider to have the single best welcome bonus out there, as well as a cards with best-ever welcome bonuses right now. Not only do the cards have great bonuses, but they have excellent bonus categories, ranging from 1.5x points on all purchases, to 3-5x points in select categories.

Applying for business credit cards in general can be intimidating for new businesses, though I recommend giving it a try using the above tips, and you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised by the results.

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Comments

  1. I was recently approved for the Ink Business Preferred as a sole proprietor – but Chase phoned me to chat about my business & future plans first. Not sure how common this is but n = 1 at least.

  2. @Ben F – Make that n=2 because I applied in-bank and was posted extensive questions about the nature of my business…

  3. @Ben F – Make that n=2 because I applied in-bank and was posted extensive questions about the nature of my business…

  4. “posed”, not “posted” as the autocomplete would have it.

    BTW, that was for the Ink Biz cash card.

  5. Both my wife and I have a small business. She is a published composer and has a small annual royalty income and I have several rental properties. (Both of these are supplemental incomes for us.) Is it possible for each of us, individually, to receive an Ink Business Preferred Card with 80,000 points each?

  6. @Robert W Herrington

    Yes. And the first one of you to get the card can refer it to your spouse for an extra 20,000 referral bonus.

  7. Got it the other day after falling under 5/24, approved via wife referral. As noted in article and comments, questioned a lot more than I’m used to. How long until they start asking for tax returns to prove income?

    At the end, moved some of credit line from INK cash over to get approved.

  8. Lucky, I have a couple of questions: (please and thank you!)

    1) Every time you write “$500 cash back (which can potentially be converted into 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points) after spending $3,000 within three months” I wonder what you mean and how do you ‘convert’ them?
    2) On the Ink Business Preferred, when one works from home, can you get 3 times points on your whole home internet / phone / cable bill, or do you have to break it down into time used for a business purpose? (same question for 5x points on the Ink Business Cash)

  9. I have the old Ink Plus Business Card because it gives me 5x points on purchases from office supply companies (up to $50,000) with a $95 annual fee.
    I just noticed that the Ink Business Cash offers the same benefit (up to $25,000) with no annual fee.
    Since we never spend more than 25k/year at office supply stores, is there any reason we shouldn’t transfer cards?
    I think I’ll probably forgo the small welcome bonus so I can apply for more lucrative bonuses later and stay under the 5/24.
    Any suggestions?

  10. @ BobH — It can make a lot of sense to switch from the Ink Plus to the Ink Cash. I wrote about this here:
    https://onemileatatime.com/chase-ink-preferred-downgrade/

    However:
    — The welcome bonus of 50K points on the Ink Cash can be well worth it, in my opinion
    — While the Ink Cash is subjected to 5/24, applying for the card doesn’t count as a further inquiry towards the limit

    Let me know if you have any other questions!

  11. We applied for the SW Air card and they grilled us on our business (rental
    properties) and then denied us because we didn’t have a separate tax identification number. Unfortunate since we were trying to go for the SWCompanion Pass.

  12. I can’t gets a Chase card. 5/24 holds me back even for business cards. Recently denied a southwest business card. NO fun for me. Frustrated with Chase!!

  13. Are any of these cards better than the Ink Bold (no longer offered to new applicants)

    I’m not asking NOT in terms of new account bonuses, but for business spend.

    Ink Bold offers 5x on office supply stores and phone/internet.

  14. Kathleen — I’m surprised to hear that about needing a tax id number. We just received both a SW business and personal card using our SS number. My business is also rental properties. Have you tried calling the reconsideration line?

  15. Kathleen — I’m surprised to hear that about needing a tax id number. We just received both a SW business and personal card using our SS number. My business is also rental properties. Have you tried calling the reconsideration line?

  16. When I applied for ink cards in the past I was given the third degree about my business so I don’t think that is anything new. They even asked about how I did advertising for my business etc. Was extremely intrusive. I worry that credit card companies in the future are going to start demanding more and more information from applicants so they can gather data and resell it etc.

  17. Also recently applied for SW business card and app is pending. I’ve called recon 5+ times, and they’re asking for very specific documentation about my tax ID and verification of my business address. And I actually have a real business. So frustrating. It would have been much easier to use my home address and SSN, but they need a letter from the IRS with my business address on it confirming my tax id. By the way, it’s easy/free/quick to apply for an EIN (tax ID #). I just had to change the address on mine, get a replacement paper copy mailed, and go into a chase branch. Which means my application will be denied by the time I do that and I’ll have to reapply.

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