With most Chase credit cards, Chase will not approve your application if you have opened 5 or more cards with any bank in the past 24 months. This is known as the 5/24 rule.
Chase uses your credit report to count your 5/24 status. As a result, any business cards that do not get reported to the personal credit bureaus are not included in this count. Even Chase business cards are not counted (but most are subject to 5/24 — that is, if you’re over 5/24 you probably won’t get approved). Cards where you are the authorized user also count towards 5/24 when they appear on your credit report, but Chase will subtract these from the count if you call their reconsideration line after getting denied for a new card.
For more details about credit scores, credit reports, and credit inquiries, please see: Complete Guide to Free Credit Scores, Reports, and Monitoring
3 Easy Ways to Count Your 5/24 Status
One complexity in determining your current 5/24 status is the fact that cancelled cards should be counted. That is, if you opened a card within the past 24 months, it still counts against you even if you have since cancelled it. Yet many tools that show your accounts only show the ones that are currently open (or they show the cancelled ones separately).
Fortunately, there are easy ways to get your 5/24 status:
- Credit Karma via a special link
- Experian Smart Phone App
- Travel Freely (this is the easiest option after some setup)
Here’s how to use Credit Karma to get your 5/24 status:
1) Setup account or log in
Credit Karma is one of many available free services that estimate your credit score. I particularly like Credit Karma because it gives you free access to your TransUnion and Equifax credit reports with full details about the accounts that appear on your credit reports, and optionally provides active monitoring of your TransUnion report. You can log in or sign up here: Credit Karma.
2) Browse to the “old interface” link
As found on Reddit, this link will bring you to a page that makes it easy to count your 5/24 status: www.creditkarma.com/myfinances/creditreport/#accounts.
Simply click the above link after logging into Credit Karma and you’ll find a page that looks like this:
3) Sort by Open Date
Click the heading “Open Date” once to sort ascending:
4) Scroll to find recently opened accounts
Scroll down until you find the first card opened within the past 25 months not counting day of month. For example, if the current date is March 2018, then you would look for the first card opened by or more recently than March 1 2016.
In my case, my first qualifying card was opened on September 23rd 2014:
5) Count ’em up
Starting with the first card that appeared within the past 25 months, count all of the cards that were opened on that date or more recently. Closed cards do count. Authorized user cards do count (but you can get these subtracted when calling reconsideration). Store cards count only if they can be used elsewhere (e.g. when they are Visa, Mastercard, or Amex cards). Loans and other non-credit card accounts do not count.
I currently have 16 accounts that were opened in the past 24 months. So, I am way over 5/24. In April, the March 2016 account will drop from my 5/24 count so I’ll be down to 15/24.
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 March 2018 you would count all accounts including those that were opened in March 2016.
Closed cards do count. Authorized user cards do count (but you can get these subtracted when calling reconsideration). Store cards count only if they can be used elsewhere (e.g. when they are Visa, Mastercard, or Amex cards). Loans and other non-credit card accounts do not count.
If you count 5 or more, then you are over 5/24. My current count is 16. Yeah, I’m over.
Travel Freely does one simple thing: it guides you through the steps involved in earning points and miles through credit card bonuses. Travel Freely recommends cards for you based not just on the current best offers, but also based on what cards you’ve signed up for previously. And it’s aware of most of the known multi-card rules. For example, it won’t recommend the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve if it has been less than 48 months since you obtained a signup bonus for either one. Once you sign up for a card (and enter it into the website), you’ll get periodic emails reminding you of the due date for meeting minimum spend. Later, Travel Freely will notify you when it’s a good time to sign up for another card. Travel Freely will also notify you when an annual fee is coming up so that you can plan to downgrade, cancel, or seek a retention offer if the card’s benefits don’t outweigh the fee. You can read more about Travel Freely here.
One great feature of Travel Freely is that it constantly shows your 5/24 status at the top of its card dashboard page (see above for an example). Even better, it shows the date at which you’ll be able to sign up for Chase cards again (assuming you don’t sign up for any new cards in the meantime).
In order to get this information to show up correctly, you do need to enter details about all of your credit card signups. I recommend doing so anyway with all new cards since the app will provide you with helpful reminders. If you haven’t used Travel Freely up until now, then I’d recommend entering in all of the cards you’ve signed up for in the past 25 months, if not longer. Yes it can be a bit of work to get started, but it’s worth it for all of Travel Freely’s primary features and for the constant 5/24 display.
Sign up here for Travel Freely (it’s free).