With the introduction of its unofficial 5/24 Rule, Chase has made life much harder for those who like to frequently sign up for credit cards to get the signup bonuses. With the 5/24 Rule, Chase denies most application in which the applicant has opened 5 or more cards in the past 24 months.
And we’re not just talking about Chase cards here. All issuers count. If you’ve never opened a Chase card in your life, but you opened 3 Amex cards and 3 Citi cards in the last 24 months you may be out of luck.
Even authorized user cards count. If you opened 3 of your own cards and were added as an authorized user to 3 other accounts in the past 24 months, you may be out of luck. [Note that it is possible to remove authorized user accounts from your credit report]
Fortunately, not all cards count towards the 5/24 Rule. Many business cards do not appear on personal credit reports and therefore do not count towards 5/24. See: Business card advantages (and a straw man plan).
How to count your 5/24 status from your smart phone
Chase bases its count on info found in your personal credit report. There are many ways to get your credit report for free so that you can count your 5/24 status yourself.
Unfortunately, Credit Karma is no longer a useful way to get this information since they no longer show account open dates. Instead, one easy way is through an app…
Here’s one way to count your 5/24 status… step by step. A similar process should work with just about any tool or report that shows you your full credit report details.
1. Install the Experian app on your smart phone
On an iPhone, open the App Store and search for Experian. On an Android phone, the Google Play Store and search for Experian.
Look for the app titled “Experian – Free Credit Report“.
Install the app and register or log in if you already have an Experian account.
2. Select “Credit Reports”
Click the app menu (it looks like three horizontal bars) and click “Credit Reports”
3. Click “Accounts”
4. Sort New to Old
Click Views… Date Opened (New to Old).
Scroll down and count all accounts until you get one month past 24 months ago. For example, in June 2017 you would count all accounts until you find those that were opened prior to June 2015.
Closed cards count. Authorized user cards count.
If you’ve signed up for new cards in the past 30 days or so, they may not be reflected in your Experian report yet. Be sure to add these to your count.
If you count 5 or more, then you are over 5/24. My current count is 22. Yeah, I’m over.
Do Chase Business cards add to your 5/24 total?
Chase business cards do not appear on personal credit reports, but obviously Chase knows if you have opened those cards in the past 24 months. The question is whether Chase includes those cards in the total for 5/24 Rule purposes? Readers have reported convincing evidence in both directions. Until we know for sure, the conservative approach is to count your Chase business cards. But, personally, if I was under 5/24 without counting Chase business cards, I’d take a risk and try to get additional Chase cards. It’s not the end of the world if you’re denied due to 5/24, but you could be leaving excellent opportunities on the table if you don’t try.