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maximizing UR points
Hi. I already have the Chase Sapphire Reserve but no other UR cards. I was going to apply for the Freedom Unlimited next. However, would it make more sense to apply for the Sapphire Preferred, get the sign up bonus and then downgrade? How quickly can I downgrade after earning the bonus without creating any issues? I can probably hit the spend requirement in two months and I am also Chase Private Client. Also any hush sign up bonuses available? In branch is easy for me.
Welcome [USER=3377]@Pertsey1110[/USER] – so the first question is: how many cards have you applied for in the last 24 months? If it’s more than 5 (with a few exceptions), Chase is unlikely to issue you another card.
If you’re under that threshold then I would definitely sign up for the Preferred instead of the Freedom Unlimited. Bigger bonus and free for a year. I’d wait until its annual fee becomes due before downgrading it to the Preferred. Banks typically don’t like it when you make changes to it (closing or downgrading) shortly after getting the bonus.
Be aware that when you downgrade you don’t get whatever bonus the Unlimited would have to offer but it will keep the same number and it will be good from a credit history POV as that line of credit will just continue.
I am definitely under the 5/24 rule. My biggest motivation for the Unlimited was the fact that my son started day care that costs over 1,000 per month. I also don’t have any good cards for the non-Reserve categories like drug store, groceries, etc. If I keep the Preferred for a year I would miss out on at least 6,000 points from the day care cost plus other earnings. Don’t want to apply for both to limit credit pools and don’t have any imminent need for UR points.
Well you could always get the Unlimited now and later get a Preferred and then downgrade it to a regular Freedom, the one that has 5x bonus categories.
If the daycare takes Amex you might also consider diversifying your points with either an SPG card or one that earns Membership Rewards. In either case it’s only 1x but the SPG card only earns 1x anyway (except at SPG/Marriott hotels) and Ben rates SPG points as the most valuable of the flexible currencies. You can earn SPG/Marriott gold status by spending $30K on the card each year so this expense would go a long way toward that. That may or may not make a difference to you, depending on your travel plans.
Thanks MidSouthSkier. The SPG idea is interesting. will have to check if they take Amex. Most of my travel is domestic for work and I have to put it on a Green Corporate Amex. Don’t have any major travel plans over next 12 to 18 months as we will be going for kid no. 2 soon. Sounds like the Unlimited might be the best choice for now with the added benefit of keeping things simple for the wife