Edited by: Jessica Merritt
& Kellie Jez
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Bilt Rewards is one of the most exciting new financial services companies and aims to transform tenants’ relationships with paying rent.
Founded on the central premise of being able to pay for rent with no additional fees while earning rewards on rent, this promising company incentivizes renters to get as much back from their rent as possible while paving the way to homeownership.
With plenty of transfer partners, following the financial wellness journey with Bilt is now more fun than ever. This rewards program opens up the opportunity to book luxury award travel for an incredible value.
Let’s dig into our review of Bilt Rewards.
Bilt Rewards is a rewards and loyalty program that allows members and cardholders to earn points on purchases.
You can earn Bilt Points without the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card, but it’s much easier to earn more points with a Bilt card than without.
When you sign up for a Bilt card, you’re automatically enrolled in Bilt Rewards. Otherwise, you can register for a Bilt Rewards account if your landlord is a part of the Bilt Rewards Alliance, a network of landlords around the U.S. that accept rent payments through Bilt’s platform.
The best way to earn Bilt Points is to spend on the Wells Fargo-issued credit card!
Once you’ve racked up enough Bilt Points, you can redeem them for some amazing travel bookings. Plus, while you’re racking up points from rent payments, you can build your credit history.
The best way to earn Bilt Points is by spending on the proprietary credit card issued by Wells Fargo:
Never before has there been a credit card built specifically with renters in mind. Enter the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card, designed specifically to help renters earn rewards on their rent payments with no fees.
Of course, aside from rewards on rent, there are many other solid benefits that the card offers that add extra value to cardholders. In this guide, we provide a complete breakdown of everything the Bilt card has to offer to help you decide whether the card makes sense for you.
The Bilt card is the quintessential — and only — credit card you can use to build Bilt Points.
If you have at least 5 transactions that post per billing statement, you’ll earn:
Other key benefits include travel insurance, cell phone protection, purchase security, and other World Elite Mastercard benefits.
On the first day of every month, Bilt has Rent Day, which is valid from 12:00 a.m. EST to 11:59 p.m. PST.
On these dates, you’ll earn double points (except on rent):
You can earn up to 10,000 bonus points every month — and that’s not all!
On Bilt Rent Day, you can also access special offers, which have included 2-for-1 cruise fares through Virgin Voyages and free points through trivia games, as well as rent giveaways.
This is a great way to save money, earn more points, and potentially win big prizes!
One of the best ways to earn bonus points with Bilt Rewards is to use your Bilt card to pick up the bill when dining out.
That’s because the Bilt card earns 3x points on dining. Just keep in mind that you need to have at least 5 transactions post within a billing period to earn points for that billing period.
Dining is classified as:
Notably, the fine print states that “caterers, grocery stores, and other miscellaneous places that serve food or operate restaurants on their premises are not considered eating places and restaurants.”
For example, if you spend $1,000 per month on dining, you will earn 3,000 points from dining, as long as you hit that 5-transaction minimum.
With the Bilt card, you’ll earn 2x points on travel, as long as you have at least 5 transactions that post to your account in a statement period.
Mastercard explicitly excludes these categories from travel:
So if you spend $500 on airfare and $300 on Airbnb in a month, you’d earn 1,000 points since your Airbnb purchase is ineligible to earn points. This is, of course, assuming that you made at least 5 transactions that post to your account within that statement period.
Bilt’s claim to fame is earning points by paying rent, so it only makes sense that one of the best ways to earn Bilt Points is through rent payments.
Right now, you’ll earn 1 point per dollar spent on rent paid through the Bilt Rewards app, up to 50,000 points per calendar year.
You can only make rent payments to 1 property per month, and if your rent is less than $250, you’ll earn 250 points for that payment.
That means you’ll earn at least 250 points per rent payment, even if your rent payment is lower than $250.
It gets better — even if your landlord isn’t a Bilt Rewards Alliance partner, you can still earn points by having Bilt send a check on your behalf, with no transaction fees!
If your landlord has an online payment portal, you can just use your Bilt card to make the payment with no transaction fees!
Hot Tip: If you don’t have the Bilt card, you can still process your rent payments through Bit and earn 250 points per rent payment.
Another way to take advantage of the Bilt Rewards ecosystem is to refer a friend to get the Bilt card.
Right now, you can earn 2,500 Bilt Points as a referral bonus for each successful applicant to the Bilt card.
Also, for every 5 successful referrals made, you’ll get another 10,000 Bilt Points. So if you made 5 successful referrals, you’d earn 12,500 points from each referral bonus, plus the extra bonus of 10,000 points, for a total of 22,500 points.
You’re capped at earning 90 rounds of 5 referral bonuses (a maximum of 2,025,000 Bilt Points).
Here are some of the requirements for referrals to qualify for the bonus:
Referral bonuses are deposited within 30 days after the qualified referral has been approved for a Bilt card.
One of the most attractive features of Bilt Rewards is the ability to redeem Bilt Points for luxury travel. You can transfer Bilt Points to airline and hotel partners for award travel!
Bilt’s list of transfer partners is amazing — with both domestic and international frequent flyer programs, the global traveler will benefit tremendously.
|Bilt Transfer Partner||Minimum Point Transfer||Transfer Ratio||Transfer Time|
|Aer Lingus AerClub||2,000||1:1||TBD|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Air France-KLM Flying Blue||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|American Airlines AAdvantage||2,000||1:1||Up to 24 hours|
|British Airways Executive Club||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Emirates Skywards||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|United MileagePlus||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Virgin Atlantic Flying Club||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|IHG One Rewards||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|World of Hyatt||2,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
So whether you want to book an Emirates first class ticket halfway around the world or a short domestic flight on United Airlines, Bilt has you covered.
Bilt’s partner list is among the most comprehensive, with 2 major airline frequent flyer programs in American AAdvantage and United MileagePlus, as well as the fantastic World of Hyatt loyalty program.
Just remember that when you transfer points, you must do so in 2,000-point increments as a Bilt Rewards Blue member.
To transfer Bilt Points to travel partners, follow these simple steps:
The Bilt Rewards Travel Portal is powered by Expedia and allows you to book flights, hotels, rental cars, and activities using your points. Your points are worth 1.25 cents each in the portal, similar to the redemption offering from the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.
There are 4 other ways you can use Bilt Points:
We value Bilt Points at 1.8 cents each, which means that 50,000 Bilt Points are worth $900 and 100,000 Bilt Points are worth $1,800.
In general, you’ll get reduced value when you use Bilt Points at The Bilt Collection, for group fitness classes, or rent and down payments.
To get the most value, you’ll typically want to transfer points to airline and hotel partners to book business and first class flights or 5-star hotel stays.
For example, if you transfer 70,000 Bilt Points to American Airlines AAdvantage and book a one-way Qatar Airways Qsuites flight that costs $7,000, you’ll get a redemption value of 10 cents per mile, which is multiple times more than our 1.8 cent-per-point valuations.
Bilt Points do not expire as long as your account is open and in good standing as an active account.
Getting outsized value from paying rent is easier than ever, thanks to the Bilt card.
But how does Bilt Rewards compare to the alternatives out there?
Bilt Rewards is often compared to Amex’s own rewards program: Membership Rewards.
In some ways, Amex Membership Rewards is superior to Bilt Rewards — there are additional American Express transfer partners like Aeromexico Club Premier, ANA Mileage Club, Avianca LifeMiles, Delta SkyMiles, and Singapore KrisFlyer.
On the other hand, Bilt Rewards has a few unique transfer partners like American AAdvantage, United MileagePlus, and World of Hyatt.
We value Amex Membership Rewards points at 2.2 cents each, which makes them more than 20% more valuable than Bilt Points.
Despite the contrasting valuations, we actually believe that it makes the most sense to hold your points in both Bilt Rewards and Amex Membership Rewards to be able to capture as many transfer partners as possible.
Bilt Rewards shares a lot of similarities with Chase Ultimate Rewards — it has United MileagePlus as a U.S. transfer partner, and it also has World of Hyatt (the most valuable hotel transfer partner) and a variety of other international programs, like Air Canada Aeroplan, British Airways Executive Club, Emirates Skywards, and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.
We give the edge to Bilt Rewards here, which may be a controversial opinion. But we do so because it has 2 underrated transfer partnerships with American Airlines AAdvantage and Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles.
Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 2.0 cents each, while Bilt Rewards are worth 1.8 cents each.
Bilt Rewards is a much better overall transferrable currency than Capital One Miles, thanks to its ability to transfer to United and American for domestic U.S. flights, as well as World of Hyatt for its points-efficient hotel prices.
Capital One is more advantageous for international airline transfers like Aeromexico Club Premier, Avianca LifeMiles, Etihad Guest, and Singapore KrisFlyer.
We peg Capital One miles and Bilt Points to the same value of 1.8 cents each, which makes them neck-and-neck competitors.
Citi ThankYou Rewards‘ biggest strength is its portfolio of international airline frequent flyer programs — however, it’s going to be pretty difficult to use points for domestic flights if that’s part of your plans.
In contrast, Bilt Rewards has partnerships with United Airlines and American Airlines. You can also redeem points at World of Hyatt for some fantastic deals.
One underrated feature of Citi ThankYou Points, though, is the ability to transfer points at a 1:2 ratio to Choice Privileges — when done successfully, you can get some great value at hotels.
We value Bilt Points at 1.8 cents each, while Citi ThankYou Points are worth 1.6 cents apiece.
Bilt cardholders can also earn points towards 4 tiers of Bilt status:
Benefits include a Bilt Collection gift (Platinum), bonus points new leases or renewals at participating properties (Silver, Gold, Platinum), and a homeownership concierge (Gold, Platinum).
Members that are Silver, Gold, or Platinum can earn interest (earned as points) based on the national savings rate outlined by the FDIC. The interest is calculated based on the average daily points balance in your account across every 30-day period.
The Bilt card also comes with a variety of other benefits, including:
Overall, Bilt Rewards has become one of the biggest players in the transferrable rewards space, mostly because of its unexpectedly awesome collection of airline and hotel partners.
It’s hard to complain about its transfer partners when it has United MileagePlus, American AAdvantage, World of Hyatt, and a bunch of other international frequent flyer programs all under 1 umbrella!
Currently, the best way to earn Bilt Points is through credit card spending on the Bilt card, thanks to the 3x points on dining, 2x points on travel, and 1x points on other purchases.
Make sure to capitalize on the double bonus earnings on Rent Day, referral bonuses, and more.
We still believe Amex Membership Rewards points are more valuable than Bilt Points, but we’re in the controversial camp that believes Bilt Points are more valuable than Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
Bilt Points are roughly on par with Capital One miles, and slightly better than Citi ThankYou Points.
However, Amex, Capital One, and Citi generally offer easier ways to accumulate more points beyond just 1 credit card product. At the same time, Bilt offers the ability to rack up points with rent, which could be huge.
The information regarding the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
We think Bilt Rewards are absolutely worth it. Even though the number of ways to earn Bilt Points is limited as of now, being able to pay for rent without any transaction fees while earning points is an absolute no-brainer! This is on top of the ability to earn 3x points on dining and 2x points on travel.
In general, you can qualify for a Bilt card with a good credit score. Obviously, a higher credit score is better, but we’ve had reports of applicants in the mid-600s getting approved for the Bilt card.
The founder and CEO of Bilt Rewards is Ankur Jain.
Bilt Rewards is a loyalty and rewards program offered to those who participate in Bilt’s ecosystem, including using the Bilt card, paying for rent through Bilt’s platform, and referring new customers to Bilt.
You can earn Bilt Points using the Bilt card on travel, dining, rent payments, and everything in between.
You can transfer Bilt Points to airlines and hotels to book travel. You can also use Bilt Points for group fitness classes, The Bilt Collection, rent payments, or a down payment for a home.
Bilt Points do not expire as long as your account is open and in good, active standing.
Although Bilt has Wells Fargo as one of its investors, it is not wholly owned by Wells Fargo.
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