Bank of America has long favored applicants who have some type of account with them. This is one reason I always struggled to get approved for Bank of America cards in the past — it was always an uphill battle with them. But now, via DOC, it looks like BOA might be implementing a new rule that gives BOA customers further preference and clamps down on new applicants in a pretty big way.
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The 2/3/4 rule
Before jumping into the new rule, it’d be a good idea to review the current rules in effect at BOA.
In the past, Bank of America has been known to limit you to a certain number of new Bank of America credit card accounts over the span of a month to 24 months. For example, you could only be approved of a maximum of:
- Two new BOA cards in a 30 day period
- Three new BOA cards in a 12 month period
- Four new BOA cards in a 24 month period
This rule is known as the Bank of America 2/3/4 Rule. But now there might be an additional rule at play that functions similar to the Chase 5/24 Rule. This new rule will limit customers to a number of cards depending on their relationship with BOA.
The “7/12 and 3/12” rule
- Applicants with a BOA deposit account will not be approved if they have opened seven or more credit cards in the past 12 months.
- Applicants without a BOA deposit account will not be approved if they have opened three or more credit cards in the past 12 months
Just like 5/24, this rule will consider all cards opened (probably only those that report to your personal credit report and/or possibly with BOA but we’ll see).
But these rules also might not be as strictly enforced as 5/24. So in other words, if you are in violation of these rules, you may still get approved in some cases. And you might be able to get around them if you have substantial funds in your account ($250K+).
It also appears that the 7/12 and 3/12 rules might not affect BOA business cards (though DPs are somewhat mixed). So while we are still awaiting some details on the new rules, I’d just assume that they will apply to you if you are in violation of the rules just to be on the safe side.
The new trend continues
We are continuing to see more and more rules come into existence that force you to be more knowledgeable and strategic about your credit card applications, and I think this trend is only going to continue for the foreseeable future. This is one of the main reasons I’m working on WalletFlo, so that you won’t have to worry about keeping up with these changes and working all the crazy calculations.
Overall, I don’t think these changes are that bad if you have a BOA account but they are pretty restrictive otherwise at 3/24. We’ll see how strictly these new rules get enforced and if they become hard rules like 5/24.
Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time travel expert covering destinations along with TSA, airline, and hotel policies. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.