How to get approved for the Sapphire Reserve

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Updated 3/15/2017

If you’re interested in applying for the Chase Sapphire Reserve card, or really any Chase card, what follows is a step by step guide designed to help ensure approval…

1) Check your credit score

There are many ways to check your credit score for free.  Here are a few easy options:

Get approved Sapphire Reserve

If your credit score is below 700 then you are probably better off working towards improving your credit score rather than signing up for new cards.

Continue to next step if your score is Very Good or Excellent:

2) Determine your 5/24 status

If you sign up for lots of credit cards, you may be subject to Chase’s dreaded “5/24 Rule”.  Chase will frequently deny applications when an applicant’s credit report shows 5 or more new cards in the past 24 months.  This total includes accounts in which you are an authorized user and includes accounts from other banks.

You can determine your 5/24 status by viewing your credit report (I use the free website Credit Karma to do this) and counting all credit cards that show an open date of two years ago or less.  You should include cancelled cards in your count as well.  Note that inquiries are not part of the 5/24 calculation.

For detailed instructions see: How to count your 5/24 status.

Get approved Sapphire Reserve

If you have 4 or fewer new cards on your credit report, then you should be good to go!  There is no need to read further.  You can signup online or in-branch.  Either way, your chance of success should be pretty high.

Please click the “Credit Card Offers” tab on the Frequent Miler menu bar to view credit card offers.

If you have 4 or fewer new cards after subtracting out cards in which you are an authorized user, then you have a good chance of success after calling for reconsideration.  In other words, you are likely to get denied initially, but you can then call reconsideration at 1-888-270-2127.  If the agent tells you that your application was denied due to too many accounts in the past 24 months, then point out the accounts in which you are an authorized user and ask that those not be considered. You may have to call a few times (and/or ask for a supervisor) to find a person willing to help.

Continue to next step if you have opened 5 or more accounts in the past 24 months:

3) Try to get pre-approved

Many readers have reported getting approved for the Sapphire Reserve card despite being far over 5/24.  Most of these readers reported that they went in person to Chase and learned that they were pre-approved.

Here’s how to learn if you are pre-approved:

Visit a Chase bank.  Tell the banker that you are interested in applying for the Sapphire Reserve card but you want to check first to see if you are pre-approved.  If so, apply!
A banker who knows you may be willing to check your pre-approval status over the phone.

Via a personal conversation with Doctor of Credit I learned that online approvals may not help circumvent 5/24 rules.  However, if you want to take a chance and look for online approval anyway, here’s how:

  1. Check online with Chase.  Chase has a website (here) where you can check to see if you are pre-qualified for any offers.  Unfortunately, this site rarely shows anything worthwhile.  It’s important to note that the online tool may not show that you are pre-qualified, but a banker may see that you are.
  2. Try the CardMatch Tool to see if you are pre-qualified for any Chase offers. Like the Chase site mentioned above, if you don’t find that you are pre-qualified through this site, you might still find that you are pre-qualified if you talk to a Chase banker.  Disclosure: The CardMatch Tool link is an affiliate link. If you click through that link and apply and are approved for any cards on the CardMatch Tool site, I will be paid a commission.

Continue to next step if you are over 5/24 and you are not pre-approved for the Sapphire Reserve card:

4) Join Chase Private Client

UPDATE 12/15/2016: Private Client status can help with approvals, but it is no longer a silver bullet for getting around 5/24.

This is one of those “easier said than done” kind of things.  Chase Private Client status is great in lots of ways (details here), but getting that status may or may not be an option for you.  Here are a few options:

  1. Have $250,000 on deposit with Chase. This includes checking accounts, savings accounts, and investment accounts. While I haven’t tried it, it should be possible to switch an un-managed retirement fund to Chase in order to qualify.
  2. Convince a Private Client banker that you plan to deposit $250,000 or more with Chase.
  3. Open a joint account with a current Private Client member.  This should automatically give you Private Client status.

Private Client members seem to be mostly immune to 5/24.  I write “mostly” because most readers with Private Client status have reported success with Chase applications despite being over 5/24, but a few have reported otherwise.  Once you get Private Client status, you can apply online or in-branch.  Even if you’re not immediately approved, it should now be possible to get approved by calling Chase’s reconsideration line: 1-888-270-2127.

Please click the “Credit Card Offers” tab on the Frequent Miler menu bar to view credit card offers.

Continue to next step if you are over 5/24, you are not pre-approved for the Sapphire Reserve card, and you cannot get Private Client status:

5) Wait to dip under 5/24

If you stop applying for new cards for a while, your “new” accounts will eventually become old (as in, older than 24 months).  While you’re waiting, you can still rack up lots of points by signing up for a bunch of business cards that don’t show up on your personal credit report.  Please see: Curing 5/24.

Don’t call until denied

Most people who apply for the Chase Sapphire Reserve card have reported getting a pending decision.  For example, they may be told that a decision will be made in 7 to 10 days.  While many people like to call the reconsideration line (1-888-270-2127) to speed up the process, I recommend waiting.

When you apply for a card, you essentially have three chances for approval: 1) automated instant decision; 2) automated decision after application goes pending; and 3) reconsideration.

Those who call for reconsideration before step 2 is complete force Chase to bypass that step. It is possible that a recon agent will deny an application that would have been approved by the the automated process in step 2.

If you wait, you have an extra chance of approval.  If that process results in a denial, you can still then call 1-888-270-2127 to try to overturn the decision.  In fact, I recommend calling several times if the first time isn’t successful.

No Guarantee

The suggestions listed above are suggestions that I think will help you get approved for the Sapphire Reserve card (or any Chase card, for that matter).  That said, I am not in any way affiliated with Chase.  I have no inside knowledge of their processes.  And, it is my understanding that many factors beyond your credit score and 5/24 status are considered when evaluating a credit card application.

In other words, while I believe that the suggestions shown above will help, I can’t guarantee success.  Not even close.

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