Author Topic: Too many credit cards  (Read 1689 times)

EconDiva

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Too many credit cards
« on: July 15, 2018, 07:36:38 AM »
Over the past year I've gotten quite a few credit cards for the purpose of travel hacking.

I think I've reached my limit!  I just got declined for two cards - the Chase United and the Capital One Venture :(

I just got the letter in the mail from Chase stating I had too many cards opened up recently; I'm sure the Capital One Venture one will say the same thing.

I'm kinda bummed as I really need to continue accumulating points for a trip I'm planning in February that will be very expensive.  If I can't get any more cards I need to scrap the destination soon and restart from scratch based on where I can go with the few points I can scrounge together now (which I was planning to use in 2018 for somewhere else).

Anywho...my question is, could I still open up a business card or 2?  I know of one American Express business card and the Chase Ink which either might just be enough to help massively with the February trip.  Or should I just chill for the rest of the year? 

NorthernBlitz

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2018, 08:10:50 AM »
Is the problem that you have too many CCs open?

With Chase, you may have hit the 5/24 rule? I don't know if Capital One has a similar policy.

We did the CC thing to get a mostly free trip to Hawaii last summer. We've been taking some time off and have cancelled all but the few cards we use regularly.

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2018, 08:15:24 AM »
Is the problem that you have too many CCs open?

With Chase, you may have hit the 5/24 rule? I don't know if Capital One has a similar policy.

We did the CC thing to get a mostly free trip to Hawaii last summer. We've been taking some time off and have cancelled all but the few cards we use regularly.

Well that's what I am thinking.  I've opened 7 if I'm recalling correctly in the past year.

Here's the exact wording from the Chase letter:
"Too many credit cards opened in the last two years associated with you."

^So for the Chase card it seems the denial was due to the 5/24 rule-I just got this letter in the mail.  FWIW, I applied for the Capital One Venture card a few days after the Chase one as I had initially gotten a "we're reviewing your application" type of notice when I applied for the Chase one.  The Capital One Venture one was just outright declined when I filled the app out online.

I was thinking of cancelling two cards that are now a year old and are no longer being used - I know everyone says not to do that but at this point most of my open accounts were opened between this time last year and today.  I was thinking it shouldn't have too much of an impact on my score; I will always keep my oldest card open.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2018, 08:19:32 AM by EconDiva »

nick663

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2018, 09:06:07 AM »
Capital One Venture seems to have some strict criteria (I was just declined for one as well).  Chase has 5/24.  There are other options out there that aren't as strict.

Just an opinion but we plan vacations that we am willing/able to pay for first and then any points/rewards we can get to offset the cost are a bonus.  We have even gone as far as moving the cash value of the points from our vacation fund to our retirement account.  We do this to avoid the lifestyle inflation from "free" travel that seems common in the travel hacking sphere.

homelesshobbit

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2018, 09:27:01 AM »
yeah, you'll need to take some time off from CC's if you want to get any of Chase's decent cards now.

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2018, 09:29:24 AM »
yeah, you'll need to take some time off from CC's if you want to get any of Chase's decent cards now.

Well I can forgo the Chase ones.  But do I need to bow out completely for the time being?

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2018, 09:33:49 AM »
Capital One Venture seems to have some strict criteria (I was just declined for one as well).  Chase has 5/24.  There are other options out there that aren't as strict.

Just an opinion but we plan vacations that we am willing/able to pay for first and then any points/rewards we can get to offset the cost are a bonus.  We have even gone as far as moving the cash value of the points from our vacation fund to our retirement account.  We do this to avoid the lifestyle inflation from "free" travel that seems common in the travel hacking sphere.

Are you going to try to appeal the Capital One decline?

On a separate note I just opened up a new Chase savings account for a cash bonus but that won't hit for another three months. 

RE: vacations I'm willing to pay for - that's tricky as once you're used to not paying for them you can't imagine using your own money to go somewhere.  I knew that between the fall of this year and summer of next year had the potential to be heavy travel periods (if I could plan for them correctly to be) due to a few milestone events.  I wasn't thinking as much about how I might not even be able to fund everything with points because it would just be too much.  I'm willing to put away some money for travel now that my EF is jusssst almost fully funded finally but it won't be enough to make this trip in February-not without another at least one additional card.

Rubic

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2018, 09:42:59 AM »
I was thinking of cancelling two cards that are now a year old and are no longer being used - I know everyone says not to do that but at this point most of my open accounts were opened between this time last year and today.  I was thinking it shouldn't have too much of an impact on my score; I will always keep my oldest card open.

If there are no annual fees on those cards, don't close the accounts.  I have
about 23 cards open.  For the non-AF cards, I make a small purchase (usually
$1 gift reload on Amazon) every 6 months so the bank won't close the card
due to non-use.  This helps my average age of accounts.

Put all your cards on a spreadsheet to track them: last 4 digits of the account,
application date, cancel date (if AF applies), minimum spend due date, etc.
There no point in travel hacking if you don't keep things organized.

Read the sidebars on /r/churning to get better educated about Chase 5/24
and other rules before you waste hard pulls.

Good luck!



Catbert

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2018, 12:09:50 PM »
Cancelling existing cards won't help you to get new ones.  Chase's 5/24 rule applies to how many cards you've obtained in 24 months, not how many of them are still open.

Do you have a spouse or partner that you could tag team with?  If you're 7/12 you'll need to cool it for awhile.  I aim for 5 a year between DH and me so we both stay around 5/24.

Business cards might be an option.  Do you have a "business"?

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2018, 01:20:32 PM »
Cancelling existing cards won't help you to get new ones.  Chase's 5/24 rule applies to how many cards you've obtained in 24 months, not how many of them are still open.

Do you have a spouse or partner that you could tag team with?  If you're 7/12 you'll need to cool it for awhile.  I aim for 5 a year between DH and me so we both stay around 5/24.

Business cards might be an option.  Do you have a "business"?

No spouse.

I do sell items across eBay/Poshmark (not sure if that qualifies as a "business")...

NorthernBlitz

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2018, 02:37:36 PM »
I was thinking of cancelling two cards that are now a year old and are no longer being used - I know everyone says not to do that but at this point most of my open accounts were opened between this time last year and today.  I was thinking it shouldn't have too much of an impact on my score; I will always keep my oldest card open.

If there are no annual fees on those cards, don't close the accounts.  I have
about 23 cards open.  For the non-AF cards, I make a small purchase (usually
$1 gift reload on Amazon) every 6 months so the bank won't close the card
due to non-use.  This helps my average age of accounts.

Put all your cards on a spreadsheet to track them: last 4 digits of the account,
application date, cancel date (if AF applies), minimum spend due date, etc.
There no point in travel hacking if you don't keep things organized.

Read the sidebars on /r/churning to get better educated about Chase 5/24
and other rules before you waste hard pulls.

Good luck!

I don't know if there's much of a difference between having a bunch of no-fee cards you don't use or closing them. I tend to close them, which would open up the opportunity to get the bonus for opening them again in the future. I don't think that the penalty for closing cards is (1) large or (2) durable (i.e. I think whatever reduction you have in your score is removed in a short time).

I feel a bit better without so many open cards as there seems to be less opportunity for fraudulent that I'd have to spend time rectifying.

But, I am far from the biggest CC churner out there. Maybe someone else has better info then me.

katsiki

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2018, 02:48:04 PM »
No spouse.

I do sell items across eBay/Poshmark (not sure if that qualifies as a "business")...

You do indeed have a "business" then.

Read up on Chase business cards and 5/24.  It applies to some but not others.  I don't fully understand it myself as I just opened my first Chase business card recently.  Planning to do more but need to line up the spend first.

Also, if you are not trying to get Chase UR points, you may find other business cards easier to get in your situation.

Hope this helps.

kpd905

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2018, 03:21:12 PM »
I'd hit up business cards from Citi, Amex, and Bank of America.  None of these will report to the personal credit bureau.  I believe Chase and Capital One business cards will both count toward 5/24, so I'd avoid those for now.

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2018, 06:09:08 PM »
No spouse.

I do sell items across eBay/Poshmark (not sure if that qualifies as a "business")...

You do indeed have a "business" then.

Read up on Chase business cards and 5/24.  It applies to some but not others.  I don't fully understand it myself as I just opened my first Chase business card recently.  Planning to do more but need to line up the spend first.

Also, if you are not trying to get Chase UR points, you may find other business cards easier to get in your situation.

Hope this helps.

Thanks!

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #14 on: July 15, 2018, 06:09:27 PM »
I'd hit up business cards from Citi, Amex, and Bank of America.  None of these will report to the personal credit bureau.  I believe Chase and Capital One business cards will both count toward 5/24, so I'd avoid those for now.

Good to know...thank you!

bacchi

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2018, 06:23:46 PM »
I don't know if there's much of a difference between having a bunch of no-fee cards you don't use or closing them. I tend to close them, which would open up the opportunity to get the bonus for opening them again in the future. I don't think that the penalty for closing cards is (1) large or (2) durable (i.e. I think whatever reduction you have in your score is removed in a short time).

Agreed. Closing a few cards doesn't affect much. It's good to keep a few open for years in order to increase your AAoA (Average Age of Accounts) though.

Citi's time limit is based on when the account opened or closed. So...if you open a Citi AA card in 6/2016 but haven't closed it yet, you can open a new one (and have 2 open at once) in 7/2018. If you opened one in 8/2015 and closed it in 7/2016, you have to wait a month until 8/2018.


EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2018, 03:23:50 PM »
Update:

Got the AmEx platinum business card w/ the $100k signup bonus.  Just what I needed. 

Honestly I will probably try for one more business card late fall and then I'm done for this year.  Will also probably cancel two cards with annual fees once they hit the one year mark within the next several months.  I did this with one card earlier this year with very minimal temporary impact to my score.  I just really want to keep my number of open accounts below a certain amount.  Also may want to re-open a few of these cards later in the future.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2018, 03:37:23 PM by EconDiva »

swampwiz

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #17 on: July 17, 2018, 04:54:13 PM »
I remember the free & easy late 90s & 00's, when banks were giving out CCs like candy.  I basically never paid off any of my CCs for like 20 years (kept on rolling over balances to low-interest deals) until the deals ran out, and I found myself in hock for $150K.  (I was still socking it away in the 401K/IRA.)  That was the deciding push for me to FIRE, and as my non-401K/IRA assets went to $0, I filed for Chapter 7.

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #18 on: July 17, 2018, 08:51:55 PM »
I remember the free & easy late 90s & 00's, when banks were giving out CCs like candy.  I basically never paid off any of my CCs for like 20 years (kept on rolling over balances to low-interest deals) until the deals ran out, and I found myself in hock for $150K.  (I was still socking it away in the 401K/IRA.)  That was the deciding push for me to FIRE, and as my non-401K/IRA assets went to $0, I filed for Chapter 7.

Oh wow...

Yeah I made some irresponsible decisions with a card I had in my early 20s but thankfully it didn't impact me too much.

When I recently began a bit of churning I decided to keep my number of cards and amount of open credit at a certain limit.  I basically only use one CC at a time (whichever one I'm working on getting a bonus from) and I never carry a balance.

macleod7066

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #19 on: July 18, 2018, 11:17:10 AM »
Update:

Got the AmEx platinum business card w/ the $100k signup bonus.  Just what I needed. 

Honestly I will probably try for one more business card late fall and then I'm done for this year.  Will also probably cancel two cards with annual fees once they hit the one year mark within the next several months.  I did this with one card earlier this year with very minimal temporary impact to my score.  I just really want to keep my number of open accounts below a certain amount.  Also may want to re-open a few of these cards later in the future.

At the risk of sounding dumb, why would you wait until the one year mark and the annual fee before cancelling?


Agreed. Closing a few cards doesn't affect much. It's good to keep a few open for years in order to increase your AAoA (Average Age of Accounts) though.

Citi's time limit is based on when the account opened or closed. So...if you open a Citi AA card in 6/2016 but haven't closed it yet, you can open a new one (and have 2 open at once) in 7/2018. If you opened one in 8/2015 and closed it in 7/2016, you have to wait a month until 8/2018.

Is there a reason to keep it open this long?  If you opened an account got the bonus, used it at the 6 month mark and closed it, wouldn't that reduce your time?  Or, is there a minimum account length on these cards?

Catbert

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #20 on: July 18, 2018, 11:27:25 AM »
Update:

Got the AmEx platinum business card w/ the $100k signup bonus.  Just what I needed. 

Honestly I will probably try for one more business card late fall and then I'm done for this year.  Will also probably cancel two cards with annual fees once they hit the one year mark within the next several months.  I did this with one card earlier this year with very minimal temporary impact to my score.  I just really want to keep my number of open accounts below a certain amount.  Also may want to re-open a few of these cards later in the future.

At the risk of sounding dumb, why would you wait until the one year mark and the annual fee before cancelling?


Agreed. Closing a few cards doesn't affect much. It's good to keep a few open for years in order to increase your AAoA (Average Age of Accounts) though.

Citi's time limit is based on when the account opened or closed. So...if you open a Citi AA card in 6/2016 but haven't closed it yet, you can open a new one (and have 2 open at once) in 7/2018. If you opened one in 8/2015 and closed it in 7/2016, you have to wait a month until 8/2018.

Is there a reason to keep it open this long?  If you opened an account got the bonus, used it at the 6 month mark and closed it, wouldn't that reduce your time?  Or, is there a minimum account length on these cards?
9
I would always suggest seeing if there is low/no cost way to keep a card.  Downgrade (technical term"product change") to a no fee card or see if there is an incentive to pay the annual fee and  stay.  For example, an incentive might be "pay $95 fee, spend 2k in 3 months and get 10,000 points "incentive".  You generally have to have had the card a year in order to maybe get an offer when you call threatening to cancel.

I get concerned about saying Fuck You too loudly to credit card companies.  Getting a card with waived fee, spending exactly the required minimum and cancelling the card 2 months after you get it seems to scream Fuck You if you otherwise catch the attention of the credit card company.


macleod7066

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #21 on: July 18, 2018, 01:06:47 PM »

I would always suggest seeing if there is low/no cost way to keep a card.  Downgrade (technical term"product change") to a no fee card or see if there is an incentive to pay the annual fee and  stay.  For example, an incentive might be "pay $95 fee, spend 2k in 3 months and get 10,000 points "incentive".  You generally have to have had the card a year in order to maybe get an offer when you call threatening to cancel.

I get concerned about saying Fuck You too loudly to credit card companies.  Getting a card with waived fee, spending exactly the required minimum and cancelling the card 2 months after you get it seems to scream Fuck You if you otherwise catch the attention of the credit card company.

Thank you, I did not look at it like a FU, but it would definitely be that in their perspective.

So, just to clarify, when the AF becomes due, give them a call and ask them to give an incentive or cancel the card before it comes due?

Catbert

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #22 on: July 18, 2018, 04:14:12 PM »

I would always suggest seeing if there is low/no cost way to keep a card.  Downgrade (technical term"product change") to a no fee card or see if there is an incentive to pay the annual fee and  stay.  For example, an incentive might be "pay $95 fee, spend 2k in 3 months and get 10,000 points "incentive".  You generally have to have had the card a year in order to maybe get an offer when you call threatening to cancel.

I get concerned about saying Fuck You too loudly to credit card companies.  Getting a card with waived fee, spending exactly the required minimum and cancelling the card 2 months after you get it seems to scream Fuck You if you otherwise catch the attention of the credit card company.

Thank you, I did not look at it like a FU, but it would definitely be that in their perspective.

So, just to clarify, when the AF becomes due, give them a call and ask them to give an incentive or cancel the card before it comes due?

My original comment about FU was really to the commenter who asked why wait until the end of the first year, just cancel immediately.

Yes, you can call the number on the back of the card credit card.  (You can't use SM for this.)  I just  say that I am thinking about cancelling the card, but want to see if there are any incentive offers that I should consider when making that decision.  With any luck they will pass you to the retention department. Sometimes there are offers and sometimes not.  If you haven't used the card in 10 months, much less likely they'll be offers.  They will NOT waive the annual fee itself.  They they will often offer either cash or points after you have done something (i.e., spend money).  They will give you a sales pitch on  how great a card it is.

You have up to 30 days or one billing cycle (I forget which) after the annual fee is charged to cancel/downgrade without having to pay the fee so don't be concerned about waiting until the fee hits to cancel.

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #23 on: July 18, 2018, 07:59:48 PM »
Update:

Got the AmEx platinum business card w/ the $100k signup bonus.  Just what I needed. 

Honestly I will probably try for one more business card late fall and then I'm done for this year.  Will also probably cancel two cards with annual fees once they hit the one year mark within the next several months.  I did this with one card earlier this year with very minimal temporary impact to my score.  I just really want to keep my number of open accounts below a certain amount.  Also may want to re-open a few of these cards later in the future.

At the risk of sounding dumb, why would you wait until the one year mark and the annual fee before cancelling?


Agreed. Closing a few cards doesn't affect much. It's good to keep a few open for years in order to increase your AAoA (Average Age of Accounts) though.

Citi's time limit is based on when the account opened or closed. So...if you open a Citi AA card in 6/2016 but haven't closed it yet, you can open a new one (and have 2 open at once) in 7/2018. If you opened one in 8/2015 and closed it in 7/2016, you have to wait a month until 8/2018.

Is there a reason to keep it open this long?  If you opened an account got the bonus, used it at the 6 month mark and closed it, wouldn't that reduce your time?  Or, is there a minimum account length on these cards?

Waiting until the one mark because closing a card months after opening could anger them a bit.

There's a grace period I think once it's due after it posts from what I remember.  It had posted on the other card I cancelled earlier this year at the one year mark and I didn't have to pay it at the time I cancelled (immediately after it posted basically).

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #24 on: July 18, 2018, 08:01:09 PM »

I would always suggest seeing if there is low/no cost way to keep a card.  Downgrade (technical term"product change") to a no fee card or see if there is an incentive to pay the annual fee and  stay.  For example, an incentive might be "pay $95 fee, spend 2k in 3 months and get 10,000 points "incentive".  You generally have to have had the card a year in order to maybe get an offer when you call threatening to cancel.

I get concerned about saying Fuck You too loudly to credit card companies.  Getting a card with waived fee, spending exactly the required minimum and cancelling the card 2 months after you get it seems to scream Fuck You if you otherwise catch the attention of the credit card company.

Thank you, I did not look at it like a FU, but it would definitely be that in their perspective.

So, just to clarify, when the AF becomes due, give them a call and ask them to give an incentive or cancel the card before it comes due?

My original comment about FU was really to the commenter who asked why wait until the end of the first year, just cancel immediately.

Yes, you can call the number on the back of the card credit card.  (You can't use SM for this.)  I just  say that I am thinking about cancelling the card, but want to see if there are any incentive offers that I should consider when making that decision.  With any luck they will pass you to the retention department. Sometimes there are offers and sometimes not.  If you haven't used the card in 10 months, much less likely they'll be offers.  They will NOT waive the annual fee itself.  They they will often offer either cash or points after you have done something (i.e., spend money).  They will give you a sales pitch on  how great a card it is.

You have up to 30 days or one billing cycle (I forget which) after the annual fee is charged to cancel/downgrade without having to pay the fee so don't be concerned about waiting until the fee hits to cancel.

Good point about seeing if they'll give you some sort of incentive in turn for keeping the account open.  I didn't ask about this for the card I cancelled earlier this year.

katsiki

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #25 on: July 19, 2018, 07:22:52 AM »
With Chase, it is 60 days.  I just downgraded a Sapphire Preferred around 50 days.  You have to call but it is relatively painless.

macleod7066

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #26 on: July 19, 2018, 07:56:26 AM »
Do you normally use the points before you downgrade?  I know some cards do not let you transfer the points or you get a lower exchange rate for them.

katsiki

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #27 on: July 19, 2018, 08:05:39 AM »
Do you normally use the points before you downgrade?  I know some cards do not let you transfer the points or you get a lower exchange rate for them.

With Chase, I keep one good points card at least.  So, in the recent example, we downgraded my wife's Sapphire Preferred because she already had a Sapphire Reserve.  When the time comes, we will downgrade that and move her points to me.  It makes sense for us to keep one Chase SR due to business travel and other reasons.

You can use the points or transfer them if you don't have another card.  However, I would think it makes sense for most people to run through Chase cards periodically and build up points.  I used to be amazed at people saying they had 300,000 UR points.  I know understand that it is possible and really not that hard if you work the system and stay mindful of the 5/24 rule.

Catbert

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #28 on: July 19, 2018, 03:21:23 PM »
A great source of info about credit cards, airline programs and travel in general is Flyertalk Forums.

This thread outlines how to ask for a retention incentive and reports the offers to people for specific credit cards.  This is Chase, there are parallel threads for Citi and Amex.

https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/chase-ultimate-rewards/1710270-chase-retention-bonus-offers-june-2015-present-including-sapphire-reserve.html

EconDiva

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Re: Too many credit cards
« Reply #29 on: July 19, 2018, 10:04:25 PM »
A great source of info about credit cards, airline programs and travel in general is Flyertalk Forums.

This thread outlines how to ask for a retention incentive and reports the offers to people for specific credit cards.  This is Chase, there are parallel threads for Citi and Amex.

https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/chase-ultimate-rewards/1710270-chase-retention-bonus-offers-june-2015-present-including-sapphire-reserve.html

Thank you for sharing.