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All the major credit card issuers have different rules when it comes to applying for credit cards, whether it involves approval, earning the sign-up bonus, etc. I’ve written about Chase’s rules when it comes to applying for cards, and one of the biggest restrictions is what we often refer to as the 5/24 rule. This was first introduced a couple of years ago, but has been expanded quite a bit since then.
I’ve explained the policy in the past, though there’s one consistent point of confusion readers seem to have, which I figured I’d cover in this post. But first let me recap the basics of the 5/24 rule:
What is Chase’s 5/24 policy?
With Chase’s 5/24 policy, you typically won’t be approved for a card if you’ve opened five or more new accounts in the past 24 months. This is more of a general guideline than a strict rule, though. Here’s what you should know about 5/24:
- A vast majority of new credit card accounts will count towards that limit, meaning that opening five or more cards in 24 months will make you ineligible for certain Chase cards
- One exception is most non-Chase business cards, like The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN, The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN, The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card from American Express, etc., don’t count towards this limit
- There are people who report not having any issues being approved for a card even though they surpassed the 5/24 rule, so it’s not consistently enforced
- The 5/24 rule doesn’t apply to all Chase cards, meaning that there are some Chase cards you can still easily be approved for if you’ve opened five or more card accounts in the past 24 months; among these cards is the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card
- This is mostly anecdotal, since Chase doesn’t officially publish this restriction for most cards
What confuses people about the 5/24 rule
Reader CA805JV asked the following in the Ask Lucky forum, and it’s a question I get asked all the time:
Hi, I have a question regarding the Chase IHG Card and the 5/24 rule. I’m currently at 3/24 and am very interested in the Chase IHG card. I know one can get this card if they are over 5/24, but what happens I f they’re below? If I get this card will my 3/24 become 4/24?
I understand where the confusion comes from. Typically when I write about cards I try to make the rules around approvals clear. So when I write about a card like the IHG Card, I’ll typically say the card isn’t subjected to Chase’s 5/24 rule. That’s to say that you can potentially be approved even if you’ve opened five or more card accounts in the past 24 months.
That doesn’t mean that applying for the card doesn’t count as an application for the purposes of applying for other Chase cards in the future. In other words, if you’ve opened four card accounts in the past 24 months and then apply for the IHG Card, you’ll then be at 5/24, and likely ineligible for cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card, etc.
The only cards you can apply for that don’t increase the number of new accounts that show as open on your credit report are select business cards not issued by Chase. This typically includes Amex business cards, and it’s because they typically don’t do a credit inquiry on new business cards if you’re an existing cardmember with them, as I explained in a previous post.
So hopefully this clears that up, and especially clears up what’s meant when I say a card is or isn’t subjected to the 5/24 rule.