Clearing up the confusion: How to complete a Chase business credit card application

Chase issues many of the best
travel credit cards
, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred
Card
and Chase Sapphire
Reserve
. But Chase also has one of the more restrictive
application rules for its cards — the dreaded 5/24
rule
.

Here’s how it works: If you’ve opened five or more credit
cards from any bank in the past 24 months, you won’t be eligible
for a Chase credit card. That’s harsh, but there are ways to
work around it. For example, business credit cards from most other
banks won’t appear on your personal credit report, so they
don’t add to your 5/24 count. The exceptions are Discover and
Capital One, whose business credit cards do add to your 5/24
count.

Small-business cards from Chase are a bit of a different animal.
These cards won’t increase your 5/24 count, but they are
restricted by it. For example, let’s say you’ve applied for
four cards in the past 24 months, so your 5/24 count is 4/24. If
you then applied for the Chase
IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
, you’d be at 5/24 and
would no longer qualify for any of the valuable Chase Ink
business credit cards
.

But if you applied for a Chase business card first, it
wouldn’t increase your 5/24 count because Chase business cards
don’t appear on your personal credit report. So you could be
approved for the
Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card
and still leave the door
open to be approved for another Chase credit
card
. That’s why it’s important to include business cards
as part of your miles and points strategy.

How to complete a Chase business card application

A Chase business card application is very similar to a Chase
consumer card application, but there are a few differences. The
biggest difference is that you’ll need to have a business that
earns revenue. That can be easier to achieve than you might realize
— you don’t need a full-time business or even a six-figure
income from your business activities to be approved for a
small-business card. And if you do have a business, having a
business card isn’t just a good way to earn extra rewards —
it’s also essential to keeping your business and personal
expenses separate.

For instance, you can qualify for business cards as a part-time
freelance writer, designer, consultant or artist. Also, gigs where
you aren’t an employee like Uber, Lyft, some delivery driver apps
(Postmates and Grubhub) or dog walking apps (Rover or Wag) can also
be eligible businesses.

Let’s take a look at the Chase business card application and
go over the information that’s most likely to trip you up. All
Chase business credit card applications will look the same, but if
you’re applying for a cobranded business card — such as the

Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card
, or
the
United Explorer Business Card
 just to use a few examples —
you’ll have the option to add your loyalty program number. If you
don’t add a number, one will be assigned to you and a new loyalty
account will be created in your name. This can be a bit of a
headache if you already have a loyalty account with that airline or
hotel because you’ll end up having to merge the two accounts.

Let’s take a look at the first online Chase business credit
card application screen:

Here’s the information you’ll need to add to each part of
the application:

  • Legal name of business: If you’re a sole proprietor —
    meaning your business is just you operating under your own name —
    you can use your name as the “legal business name.” However, if
    you’ve filed with your local or state government for a DBA (doing
    business as) name, you’ll put that name here. Also, if you’ve
    set up any sort of legal business structure, like an LLC, your
    “legal business name” will be the name of the LLC or other
    entity. A very important note here: do not make up
    a business name if you don’t have a DBA for it. Chase may ask for
    proof of your business, and if you don’t have a DBA under the
    business name you entered in this field (aside from your own
    personal name), you’ll likely be denied for a card.
  • Business name on card: This doesn’t have to be your legal
    business name because it’s just the business name that will be
    etched onto your card (just below the cardholder’s name). You
    might need to abbreviate the name you enter here because longer
    names might not fit.
  • Business mailing address: If you work at home or don’t have a
    business address, entering your home address is fine.
  • Type of business: If you’re the only owner, then select
    “sole proprietor.” If your business has two or more owners,
    choose “partnership.” If your business is registered as any of
    the other options (LLC, corporation, non-profit), select the
    appropriate option.
  • Business phone: This can be a home or mobile phone.
  • Tax identification number: If you’re a sole proprietor, you
    can use your Social Security number as your tax ID. Otherwise,
    you’ll need a federal EIN (Employer Identification Number) which
    you can easily
    apply for with the IRS
    .
  • Number of employees: You count as an employee, so this number
    will be at least one.
  • Annual business revenue/sales: This is the total annual income
    of your business before you deduct any expenses or taxes. This
    doesn’t need to be a huge number — some new businesses get
    approved with little or no income, but if you do have business
    revenue, it’ll certainly improve the likelihood of getting an
    approval.
  • Years in business: If you’ve been in business less than one
    year, enter zero.
  • General industry/category/specific type: Choose the options
    that best describe your business.

Now you’ll move on to the second Chase business credit card
application screen:

Most of the personal information you have to fill out is
straightforward. If your home address is the same as your business
address, check that box and you won’t need to re-enter the same
information. When it comes to your “total gross annual income,”
you want to be sure to include any eligible income, which according
to Chase includes:

  • Full-time or part-time jobs
  • Internships
  • Seasonal jobs
  • Interest
  • Dividends
  • Social Security benefits
  • Public assistance

You can also include “money that someone else deposits
regularly into your account,” and if you’re 21 or older, you
can include any income from others that you regularly use to pay
your bills. So if you’ve got a partner or spouse you split the
bills with, it’s OK to include his/her yearly salary with
yours.

After filling out your personal information, you can add
employee cards (optional) and review the terms before submitting.
At the very bottom, just above the “Submit” button, there’s a
box you’ll need to check to show you’ve read and agreed to the
terms.

Bottom line

Chase’s business credit card application is relatively
straightforward, but as with all credit card applications, make
sure you’re honest with your responses, because Chase can
potentially ask for documentation to confirm your entries. But
getting a business credit card isn’t as difficult as you may
think, since many freelance or independent contractor jobs and side
hustles can qualify as a business. Business credit cards can also
make your bookkeeping simple by helping you easily separate
business and personal expenses, and you can earn valuable travel
rewards at the same time. On top of that, most business credit
cards won’t appear on your personal credit report (including
Chase business cards), so they don’t add to your Chase 5/24
count.

Finally, business credit cards are a vital part of a healthy
miles and points strategy, so if you’ve been on the fence about
getting one, take another look at where you make money outside of
your normal day job and see if you might qualify.

Featured photo by @criene/Twenty20.

Source: FS – All-Travel destinations-News2
Clearing up the confusion: How to complete a Chase business credit card application