Bilt Rewards Mastercard: 22 Things to Know + Review

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In June 2021, New York City-based startup Bilt launched Bilt Mastercard® to help renters earn points on residential rental expenses in the US. They launched a co-branded card – the Bilt Mastercard – shortly after. 

Card applications have been invite-only since the loyalty program’s launch. Here’s the good news: Bilt Mastercard is now available for everyone without a waitlist. Anyone can now sign up for this much-coveted credit card, which is issued by Wells Fargo. 

In addition to earning points on rent, Bilt Mastercard earns you 3 points on dining and 2 points on travel purchases – all for a zero annual fee. What’s more, you can also get points whenever you refer others to Bilt even if you don’t own the card. 

There is a lot to cover with this Bilt Rewards review, so let’s dive right in.

No Annual Fee
Bilt Mastercard®
  • Pay Rent Without Fees and Earn 1 Point Per Dollar on Rent (up to 50,000 Points Per Calendar Year)
  • No Annual Fee
  • 3x Points on Dining
  • 2x Points on Travel
  • Transfer Rewards to Airlines and Hotels
  • Cell Phone, Primary Rental Car, and Trip Delay Insurance
Learn More

1. Earn Rewards for Paying Rent Without a Fee

With the Bilt Mastercard, you earn 1 point per dollar spent on rental expenses with a maximum of 50,000 points per year.

For example, if you make a rent payment of $2,500 per month, you would earn 30,000 Bilt points each year ($2,500 x 12).

It is also free to pay rent, saving you $50-100 each month if you wanted to earn rewards points for rent.

Here are the three options to pay your rent with your Bilt Mastercard:

  • Via Check: Bilt can send a check if your property accepts only checks. Simply pay your rent with your card through the Bilt app, and Bilt will send a check on your behalf.
  • Via ACH: Bilt provides account details so you can pay your rent online via ACH.
  • Via Bilt Rewards Alliance: Bilt partnered with 20+ large rental companies to easily earn points for paying rent.

If you send your rent via a check, Bilt provides tracking information and will email you if your landlord hasn’t cashed your rent check to try to make sure you’re never late for rent.

When Bilt first started, a few of my rent checks would mysterioustly get lost by the USPS, but for the last several months, the rent checks have arrived quickly and without issue.

2. No Annual Fee

The best part about the Bilt Rewards Card is that you get many earning opportunities and perks without paying an annual fee.

Bilt is unique because no-annual fee cards almost never offer primary rental car insurance, trip delay insurance, trip cancellation insurance, and cell phone insurance.

3. 3x Points on Dining and Takeout

Cardholders earn 3 points per dollar spent at restaurants, including takeout orders.

This is very competitive considering one of the selling points of the $550 annual fee Chase Sapphire Reserve also is 3x points on restaurants.

However, I find myself torn at restaurants between earning 3x Bilt Rewards points or earning 4x American Express Membership Rewards points with the American Express Gold. Bilt offers some unique points transfer partners, so I usually alternate using both cards.

Bilt Rewards Mastercard

4. 2X Points on Eligible Flights, Hotel Stays, and Bonus Categories

Cardmembers also earn 2 points per dollar when booking directly with:

  • Airlines 
  • Hotels and Resorts
  • Cruises
  • Rental cars

5. 1x Points Everywhere Else

All other qualifying purchases earn you 1 point per dollar. Bilt points never expire, and there’s no limit to how many you can earn. 

Every point you earn with your Bilt Mastercard counts toward your Bilt Rewards status.

6. No Welcome Bonus

One of the major disadvantages of the Bilt Mastercard is that is hasn’t offered a welcome bonus since it launched.

The lack of a welcome bonus could be how Bilt justifies offering great benefits and a free points for paying rent on a no-annual fee card.

The Bilt Mastercard is still worth adding if you can take advantage of the 1x points on rent, which effectively acts as your sign up bonus.

7. Monthly 5 Transaction Requirement

A minimum of five transactions is required per statement period to earn points, which should be easy for most cardholders.

Bilt will also send you a helpful reminder towards the end of the billing cycle if you haven’t met the five transaction minimum to ensure you still have the opportunity to earn points that month.

8. Transfer Bilt Rewards to Airlines and Hotels

The Bilt Rewards program has a broad range of airline and hotel transfer partners. 

You can transfer your Bilt points at a 1:1 ratio to these loyalty programs, which should post instantly to your account:

American Airlines American Airlines AAdvantage Air Canada Air Canada Aeroplan
Air France Air France/KLM Flying Blue Cathay Pacific Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
Emirates logo Emirates Skywards Hawaiian Airlines logo Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles
IHG Hotels IHG Hotels and Resorts Turkish Airlines logo Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles
United Airlines logo United Airlines MileagePlus Virgin Atlantic logo Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
World of Hyatt World of Hyatt

9. Other Rewards Redemption Options

Bilt Rewards offers several other redemption options below that are sub-optimal if you know how to use airline or hotel points. 

Redeem Points for Rent

You can use your Bilt Points toward your next month’s rent. However, the value is only 0.55 cents per point, which is relatively low compared to the value when transferring to airline or hotel programs. 

Redeem Points for Down Payment

Bilt also aims to help renters afford homeownership. You can save up and use your points to help cover a portion of your down payment. 

The redemption rate towards a downpayment is valued at 1.5 cents per point. For example, 100,000 points equals $1,500 towards a down payment.

However, the biggest caveat for this redemption is that the financing must originate through Bilt. 

If Bilt doesn’t have the best mortgage rate, then it is not worth redeeming points for the down payment.

Redeem Points for Items in the Bilt Collection

The Bilt Collection is an exclusive online store that features up-and-coming artists every quarter. This members-only store curates items like art, decor, and apparel inspired by the chosen artist. 

You can use your Bilt points to get these specially curated items, whether for decorating your own apartment or as a gift to friends. 

For example, this Marble Jenga set is 10,000 Bilt points, which retails for around $100 at other retailers.  

Bilt Collection

I would never redeem my Bilt points for a Collection item since you can get more than 1 cent in value when you transfer Bilt points, but at least it’s an option. 

Redeem Points for Fitness Classes

Bilt has partnered with various popular fitness companies, including Rumble, Y7 Studio, and SoulCycle, starting at only 1,600 points each class.

The value is about 1.0 cent per point, so a fitness class that costs $25 equals 2,500 points.

Bilt Fitness Class

10. Earn Points for Referrals

Bilt lets you earn a lucrative bonus through its referral program. 

You can earn 2,500 points per successful referral to Bilt.

You can also download the Bilt Rewards app to get your exclusive Bilt rewards referral code, even if you don’t have the Bilt Mastercard. 

The maximum referral bonus is 1 million points, which would require 200 referrals.

11. Bilt Rewards Elite Status

Bilt Rewards features four status tiers based on the total points you accumulate from rent and other purchases per calendar year.

There are four different levels depending on how many points you earn in a calendar year: 

  • Blue = Starting level.
  • Silver = 25,000 points
  • Gold = 50,000 points
  • Platinum = 100,000 points

You retain your status until January 31 of the following year if you reach a specific tier between January 1 and June 30 this year.

Those who obtain status between July 1 and December 31 keep their status for the rest of the year and the entire next year.  

Bilt Blue Status

Bilt Blue status is the starting level when you sign up.

Bilt Blue elite status allows you to:

  • Transfer Bilt points to Airline and Hotel points programs in increments of 2,000 points.
  • Earn bonus points for leases signed through the Bilt Rewards Alliance, which is a group of about 20+ large rental companies that Bilt members get extra perks while renting.

Bilt Silver Status

Bilt Silver elite status requires you earn at least 25,000 points in a calendar year, which can be easily achieved if you are using the Bilt card to pay for rent. 

Bilt Silver elite status allows you to: 

  • Transfer Bilt points to Airline and Hotel points programs in increments of 1,000 points (instead of 2,000 points).
  • Earn a 10% bonus on points earned from signing leases with a Bilt Alliance company.
  • Earn interest on your points.
The interest on points is a first for a loyalty program, but the rate is only based on the FDIC national savings average for your average point balance for every 30-day period.

In reality, that translates to about 1 point per month for every 10,000 points. 

Bilt Gold Status

Bilt Gold elite status requires you to earn at least 50,000 points in a calendar year.

Bilt Gold elite status allows you to:

  • Transfer Bilt points to Airline and Hotel points programs in increments of 1,000 points (instead of 2,000 points).
  • Earn a 25% bonus on points earned from signing leases with a Bilt Alliance company.
  • Earn interest on your points.
  • Access to the Homeownership Concierge.

Bilt Homeownership Concierge provides a dedicated concierge to help you throughout the home buying process, but you are required to originate a mortgage through Bilt and redeem your Bilt points toward a down payment.

Bilt Platinum Status

Bilt Platinum elite status requires you to earn at least 100,000 points in a calendar year.

Bilt Platinum elite status allows you to:

  • Transfer Bilt points to Airline and Hotel points programs in increments of 1,000 points (instead of 2,000 points).
  • Earn a 50% bonus on points earned from signing leases with a Bilt Alliance company.
  • Earn interest on your points.
  • Access to the Homeownership Concierge.
  • Free gift from the Bilt Collection.

12. BiltProtect Feature

You can enable the Bilt Protect feature that turns your Bilt Mastercard into a debit card to pay for rents and still earn Bilt points.

Instead of carrying the card balance on your Bilt Mastercard, Bilt automatically withdraws the funds from your linked bank account to pay for the rent leaving your credit line on Bilt Mastercard open for other purchases.

13. Cell Phone Insurance

Bilt offers cell phone insurance, which can reimburse for damage to or theft of a cell phone if you pay your bill with your Bilt card.

This is supplemental protection provides reimbursement after all other insurance is used up (homeowner’s insurance, renters, etc.). 

Reimbursement is limited to the repair or replacement of your original cell phone, up to $800 per claim with a $25 deductible and a maximum of two claims per year. 

Credit Card Purchase Protection Broken Phone

14. Primary Rental Car Insurance

Paying for a rental car with your Bilt Mastercard gets you primary rental car insurance. This only covers damage to the rental car and not other cars, so you must still maintain liability insurance.

Rental Car Insurance
Photo: Hertz

15. 90-Day Purchase Protection

You could receive a reimbursement if an eligible item you paid with your Bilt Mastercard gets damaged or stolen within the first three months of purchase. 

Coverage is up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per cardholder.

For example, if you’re new laptop got stolen or damaged in the first three months and you made the purchase with your Bilt Mastercard, you would be covered.

Dell Laptop

16. Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance

Cardholders that purchased a trip with the Bilt card can receive a reimbursement for the cost of common carrier passenger fare if the trip gets canceled or interrupted due to a covered reason.

17. Trip Delay Insurance

You can receive a reimbursement of qualifying expenses when your trip gets delayed for six hours or more, if you purchased the trip with the Bilt card.

The daily benefit amount is up to $200 with a maximum of $1,800 for all covered persons on the same trip.

This $200 limit is quite low considering many cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offer $500 per person in trip delay insurance.

75,000 Miles
Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
  • Earn 75,000 Bonus Miles for Spending $4,000 in the First 3 Months
  • $300 Travel Credit for Bookings via Capital One Travel
  • 10,000 Points for Each Account Anniversary
  • Hertz President’s Circle Elite Status
  • Airport Lounge Access (Priority Pass, Capital One, & Plaza Premium)
  • 10X Miles on Hotels and Rental Cars, and 5x Miles on Flights Booked with Capital One Travel
  • 2X Miles on all other purchases
  • Trip Delay and Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • $395 Annual Fee
Learn More Our Review

18. No Foreign Transaction Fees

You can use your Bilt Rewards Card anywhere across the globe without paying foreign transaction fees, saving you around 3% on international purchases.

However, the card does not offer “tap to pay” technology, which is why I don’t use it on international trips, especially to Europe.

Santorini Europe

19. Bilt Special Promotions

Bilt offers several limited time promotions to help you earn extra points. 

For example, Bilt offers 100 free points for every frequent flyer account you connect with Bilt. 

If you were to connect all eleven partners, you would receive 1,100 Bilt Points.

Occasionally, Bilt will also run other special promotions like 500 points for linking your American Airlines AAdvantage account.

Bilt special promotion american airlines

20. Mastercard Discounts and Benefits

The Bilt Rewards card also comes with several Mastercard World Elite benefits and discounts, including: 

  • Doordash – You can get a $5 discount on your first Doordash order every month. 
  • Lyft – Cardholders receive a $5 Lyft credit after paying for three rides using their Bilt Mastercard per calendar month. 
  • Fandango – You’ll receive a $5 Fandango reward after spending $20 at Fandango or on Fandango’s streaming service. 
  • Hello Fresh – You’ll get 5% back when you buy a HelloFresh meal kit delivery plan with your Bilt Wells Fargo Card. You can use your rebate to pay for your next delivery. 
  • ShopRunner – The Bilt card gets you a complimentary one-year ShopRunner membership. Plus a free two-day shipping and free returns at 140+ merchants. 
  • Mastercard Luxury Hotel and Resorts Portfolio – With access to this portfolio, you can enjoy amenities like free breakfast, complimentary upgrades, and property credits at 3,000+ hotels.
Mastercard Lyft

21. Mastercard Concierge Services

Cardholders can access Mastercard Concierge Services by calling 1-866-800-0302.

You’ll have access to knowledgeable experts who can provide:

  • Valuable information for your upcoming trip, like weather forecasts and travel requirements.
  • On-site assistance with daily household needs, like receiving a new appliance when you’re not available 
  • Help with dinner or entertainment reservations.
  • Remind you of important dates and events.

22. Mastercard ID Theft Protection

This feature immediately alerts you of potential identity theft. Mastercard ID Theft Protection monitors the entire web to ensure you don’t enter your sensitive private information on compromised websites. You can also access resolution services if you suspect the occurrence of identity theft.

Advantages of the Bilt Rewards Card

The Bilt Mastercard is an great choice if you take advantage of paying “rent” with teh card.

You can rack up 50,000 points each year from your rental spend and enjoy a host of other benefits for a zero annual fee. 

In addition to rent, this card earns you points on dining and eligible flights, hotel stays, cruises, and car rentals. As you accumulate more points, you’ll reach a higher elite status and enjoy perks like bonus points and home ownership concierge services. 

Travel insurance like primary car rental insurance and trip delay insurance make this travel credit card useful when going on trips.  

The Bilt Mastercard also has a good selection of unique transfer partners to give you broader options for points transfer like Turkish Airlines, American Airlines, and Hyatt.

Disadvantages of the Bilt Rewards Card

If you don’t pay “rent” or want a welcome bonus, then the Bilt Mastercard is a bad option since the ability to earn points for paying rent with a transacton fee is the main benefit of the card.

Also, signing up for this card counts toward the Chase 5/24 Rule, which essentially means that you should prioritize Chase cards if you have opened 5 or less cards in the past 24 months.

The Verdict

Ultimately, I really like the Bilt Rewards Mastercard because I can take advantage of the paying rent with the card for up to 50,000 free points each year.

No Annual Fee
Bilt Mastercard®
  • Pay Rent Without Fees and Earn 1 Point Per Dollar on Rent (up to 50,000 Points Per Calendar Year)
  • No Annual Fee
  • 3x Points on Dining
  • 2x Points on Travel
  • Transfer Rewards to Airlines and Hotels
  • Cell Phone, Primary Rental Car, and Trip Delay Insurance
Learn More

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