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Many people are interested in the Chase Freedom Unlimited card. It’s a special credit card that comes with no annual fee and has a high earning potential. And while this is one of the easier Chase cards to get approved for, it still is not a gimme and you will still need a decent credit profile to get approved.
In this article, I will tell you what type of credit score is needed to get approved for the Chase Freedom Unlimited card and also talk about other ways that you can improve your approval odds.
What credit score is needed for the Chase Freedom Unlimited?
Typically, to get approved for the Chase Freedom Unlimited you will want a decent credit score of at least 675 or above, though I’d personally prefer to have a credit score at or around 700 before applying. However, your credit score is only one factor in the decision to get approved for a credit card so you will want to analyze additional factors.
If you do enough research you can find data points of people getting approved for the Chase Freedom Unlimited card with credit scores in the 660 range and even 650 range. However, when you start getting in the lower ranges you’re going to probably get some very small credit limits. Also your odds are going to be on the lower side so I would suggest to try to get as close to 680 to 700 as possible before applying.
Also, you want to consider all of the additional factors below that I discuss in more detail.
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Additional factors to consider
In addition to your credit score below are several factors that you want to think about when applying for the Chase Freedom Unlimited.
Many people get excited about applying for credit cards whenever they check their credit score and see that they have a decent score in the 700s. However, sometimes it is possible to have a credit score in the 700s while having virtually no credit history.
In these cases, your credit score can be quite deceptive because it makes it look like you have better approval odds than you probably do. This is especially the case when you are dealing with a bank that likes to see you with ample credit history.
I would definitely classify Chase as a bank that usually likes to see you with an existing credit history before they approve you for one of their credit cards.
Just how much credit history that you will need is going to depend on other factors but generally I would say it’s a good idea to have 6 to 12 months of credit history before you apply for one of their credit cards.
For example, the Chase Freedom was my very first “real” credit card.
At the time I had only been issued a Macy’s store credit card with a $300 credit line that was about eight months old and aside from a car loan I really didn’t have any other credit history. However, whenever I applied for the Chase Freedom card I was approved with a credit line of about $1,600.
So my advice would be to try to establish some credit history before going for a Chase card. If your credit score is very low, it might be easier to get a credit card like a secured credit card or a credit card designed for low credit profiles.
I really don’t think it matters what type of card it is. As long as it shows up on your credit report and you have 100% payment history, it’s going to benefit you.
Open up bank account
Another great way to bolster your relationship with Chase is to consider opening up a Chase checking or savings account. It is very easy to open up an account and you can easily build up your relationship with Chase this way.
Again, I would try to keep that account open for about six months so that you could properly take advantage of your banking relationship. It will probably also help if you have consistent activity within that bank account such as constant deposits and withdrawals.
Income is another factor to consider when trying to determine your credit approval odds. When it comes to the Chase Freedom card, income is probably one of the least significant factors for approval when compared to other cards. For example, if you are going for a premium card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve then you are going to want to have a decent income just to get approved.
But because the Chase Freedom cards are entry level cards income is probably not as significant a factor for approval and mostly just relevant for determining your credit line.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited card is subject to the 5/24 Rule. So if you have opened up 5 or more accounts in the past 24 months you won’t be approved unless you’re able to get around that rule with something like a pre-approval.
Whenever you apply for a Chase credit card your application could go in many different directions. There are a number of different types of messages that you could receive after you submit your application and if you want to find out what each of these messages means then click here.
At some point you might be denied or at least not instantly approved and you will consider calling into the Chase Reconsideration Line. This is a special phone line that you can call and try to convince a representative to approve you for your credit card.
When calling, there are certain things that you want to say and other things that you want to avoid saying. For example, you want to make sure to give them a legitimate reason for why you want that credit card and you also want to be able to clearly explain any potential negatives that they might see on your credit report.
This phone call can really make or break your approval odds.
- To make sure that you don’t say anything wrong, I suggest that you check out my article on the reconsideration line.
Chase Freedom Unlimited pre-approval
The Chase Freedom Unlimited is also one of the few Chase credit cards that you can get pre-approval for. I’d recommend that you read up on my article about pre-approvals to get a better sense of how these work and tips for getting them (but keep in mind that things are always changing).
Chase Freedom Unlimited credit lines
You might also be wondering what type of credit limit that you can expect to get with the Chase Freedom Unlimited. Credit limits with the Chase Freedom card can vary dramatically but will likely depend on four main factors:
- Your credit score
- Credit history
If your credit profile is pretty thin, your score is borderline, and your income pretty mediocre or low, you might be only issued a very low credit limit of something like $500 to $1,000.
However, if you have a more established credit profile, a good score, and a six-figure plus income, you could get a credit limit over $20,000. So it really just depends.
If you are not happy about your credit line, you might be able to request a credit line increase but you should probably be patient. I would recommend that you wait 6 months before requesting a credit line increase.
If you are dealing with a low credit limit then you should consider “cycling” your credit limit. Basically, what you do is spend up to your credit limit and then pay it off a couple of times a month. Eventually, Chase should see this and then automatically increase your credit limit.
- You can read more about getting a credit limit increase with Chase here.
The Chase Freedom cards are some of the easiest Chase credit cards to get approved for. That is because they are the entry level cards and they are designed for people just getting into credit cards who may not need or want a premium type of card. But still, Chase does not approve just anybody and it is important to have a little bit of credit history and a decent score before applying.
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Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. 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.