Posted on March 13, 2016
Credit Card bonus for paying your rent!
When using credit cards you always wants to maximize your value. A lot of times that will means using different cards for purchases at different retailers. The reason for this, is to hopefully get extra points from that credit card due to a category bonus.
Some well known examples of this are the Chase Ink which gives 5X points at office supply stores and the Chase Sapphire Preferred which give 2X points on dining and travel.
If you can combine this category bonus with things you need to buy anyway then you are getting extra points with really no extra effort.
Well, there might be one more way to maximize your points with very little extra effort. By paying your Rent.
Now most places likely do not take credit cards as a form of payment and the only way to produce points from it is through a third party who will take a credit card, but that is not the case everywhere.
I found out a couple years ago that my building actually does take credit cards as payment but does charge a fee of about $15 for my roughly $1000 rent. In most instances there is no way I am paying a fee when I don’t have to and likely won’t find value in paying with a credit card unless it is the AMEX SPG (but they don’t take AMEX). With that being said, I decided to try it out one day with my Chase Sapphire Preferred as I need a few extra Ultimate Rewards points anyway.
To my delight, I discovered that I had an extra 1K points in my account the next month and realized that my building was coding as a hotel and I was getting 2X points! Now I had a whole new view of paying my rent with a credit card. If I could just pay $15 and get 2K UR points each month with ZERO effort I would do that every time. I mean at their lowest value 2K UR points is $20, so anyway you slice it I was coming out ahead.
Fast forward 18 months or so to the arrival of my Citi Thank You Premier card. This is a card I had been looking at for a long time to diversify my points and when it arrived I wanted to experiment to see what would happen when it was used to pay my rent. The reason for this switch would be that this card actually get 3X points for travel! Worst case was that if it didn’t work I would get 1K points ($10 minimum value) and lose $5 in the transaction.
In the end, IT WORKED! So now I can choose to get either 2K UR or 3K TY points each month with virtually no effort for $15.
SOO, if you pay rent somewhere I would ask if it can be paid by credit card. Then test it out! So far it seems that Citi and Chase both code my building as travel but obviously this will vary by location. Can’t hurt to try though and keep those easy points rolling in!