Each bank has different requirements and restrictions when it comes to being approved for their cards. While having excellent credit can get you approved for most cards, people with solid scores have been getting turned down by Chase due to their “5/24” rule.
Chase is a favorite amongst travel hackers and credit card points collectors due to their generous signup bonuses. As a result, it was a prime choice for many in that community to sign up for as many Chase cards as they can. They would spend the minimum amount required with the card that would unlock their signup bonus, and then cancel. The 5/24 rule was most likely set in place to prevent this kind of usage with their products.
What is the 5/24 rule?
Essentially, the 5/24 rule states that people who have opened 5 or more credit cards in the past 24 months cannot be issued for a new Chase card. The 5 credit cards can be from any issuer, not just from Chase.
What's interesting about the 5/24 rule is that there are no official documents outlining the restriction. It's more of an internal rule that they set, but never told their customers. It was only discovered through crowdsourcing information from Chase credit card applicants and noticing this specific commonality among people who were rejected. The term “Chase 5/24 Rule” was set by those customers, and not officially from Chase.
While the policy still seems to be active today, some people view it as false. Some people are able to get around it even if they've opened more than 5 accounts in the past 2 years.
How to get around Chase's 5/24 Rule
There used to be a few different ways to bypass Chase's 5/24 rule. However, it seems they were sniffed out by Chase and are no longer viable methods. Plus, it's not a good idea to try and outwit Chase or any other bank or issuer. They have the power to close your accounts due, which can lead to the removal of your accumulated points.
The only successfully recorded way to bypass the rule was through Chase's “Just For You” offers. If you're already a Chase member and are presented an exclusive offer to sign up to one of their cards, this could allow you to be accepted even if you're already at 5/24. However, this is just leaving things to chance, and it isn't always guaranteed that you'll be able to bypass the rule.
If there's a specific card that you really want to be approved for, one thing you can do is to ask them to do a product change – swapping out one of your current Chase credit cards with a new one. However, you'll need to already be a Chase card holder in order for this to work. Otherwise, you'll have to wait until you're at 4/24 to be accepted.
How to calculate your 5/24 score
If you're unsure whether you're already at 5/24 or not, the fastest way to check is to use Credit Karma. It will show you all your accounts, plus the open dates. You can check to see if you have had 5 account openings in the past 24 months.
Note: The 5/24 rule applies to account openings. So even if you've closed all 5 accounts since then, it will still count towards your 5/24 score.
What kinds of account opens count toward your 5/24 score?
What counts: All personal credit cards, and charge cards count toward your 5/24 score. Business credit card accounts don't count, UNLESS they are from Capital One, Discover, or TD Bank. If you're added as an authorized user from someone else's credit card account, that will also count.
What doesn't count: The 5/24 score is only for credit cards. Therefore, any loans or mortgage account opens do not count. Also, any cards you applied to but weren't approved for won't count towards your score.
There isn't much you can do to get approved for a Chase credit card if you're over their 5/24 rule. This doesn't affect the majority of people who only carry one or two credit cards. But if you're someone who carries a lot of credit cards, it would be a good idea to get your preferred Chase cards first before moving onto cards from other issuers. Other banks do not have this 5/24 rule.