Bilt Credit Card Review: Charge Rent and Earn Rewards

This no-annual-fee card is ideal for renters looking to earn back some value on a major monthly expense. To snag significant rewards, though, you must commit to using the card for more than just rent.
Craig Joseph Author AvatarErin Hurd Author Avatar
Apr 23, 2024 8:29 a.m. PDT
Edited by
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The Bottom Line


NerdWallet rating

For renters, it's a game-changer and among the best no-annual-fee travel rewards cards on the market. But it lacks a sign-up bonus, and you must use the card at least 5 times per billing cycle to qualify for meaningful rewards.

Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card
Annual Fee
Rewards Rate
Intro Offer
Recommended credit score
Intro APR
Regular APR
See Terms
Recommended credit score
Annual Fee
Rewards Rate
Intro Offer
Recommended credit score
Intro APR
Regular APR
See Terms
Recommended credit score
  • Annual fee


  • Rewards rate


  • Bonus offer


  • Intro APR


  • Ongoing APR

    APR: See Terms

  • Balance transfer fee

    Up to 5% for each balance transfer, with a minimum of $5.

  • Foreign transaction fee


View Rates and Fees
  • Bilt enables members to earn up to 100,000 points each calendar year on rent at any rental property in the country without a transaction fee.
  • 1X points on rent and other purchases
  • In addition to 1X points on rent, cardholders earn double points on other purchases made on Rent Day (the 1st of the month) up to 10,000 points
  • 2X points on travel when booked directly through a hotel, airline, or car rental agency.
  • 3X points on dining.
  • Use the card 5 times each statement period to earn points.
  • With each ride booked in the Lyft app, Bilt cardholders can earn up to 5X Bilt Points.
  • Select “Apply Now” to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions.

Pros and Cons


No annual fee.

Earn rewards on rent payments.

Travel partners.

Bonus categories.


No sign-up bonus.

Detailed Review

Rent is, for many, the largest monthly bill of them all. But unlike most other expenses, it's not so easy — and sometimes impossible — to make that payment with a credit card, much less to earn rewards on the transaction without incurring a fee that would cancel out the value of those rewards.

Enter the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card, which lets you earn rewards when you pay rent without having to worry about an extra fee or surcharge (or an annual fee, for that matter). Even better, the rewards you can earn from the card can be redeemed in a variety of ways, including a 1:1 transfer to more than a dozen airline and hotel loyalty programs.

The card isn't without drawbacks, though. There's no sign-up bonus, as you might expect to find on any number of rewards credit cards — even those with no annual fee. And you'll also have to commit to using the card a certain number of times every month to derive significant value from it. Using the card only for rent isn't going to net you much.

Still, for renters, the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card fits the bill in a way that no competitors can.

Bilt Rewards Card: Basics

Card type: Rewards and travel.

Annual fee: None.

Sign-up bonus: None.


  • 5 points per $1 spent on Lyft (when you link your accounts).

  • 3 points per $1 spent on dining.

  • 2 points per $1 spent on travel.

  • 1 point per $1 spent on rent (up to 100,000 points per calendar year).

  • 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases.

APR: See Terms.

Foreign transaction fee: $0.

Other benefits:

  • Primary auto damage collision damage waiver: Applies as long as you pay for the rental car with the card, a perk rarely found in a $0-annual-fee card. (New York residents are eligible only for secondary coverage.)

  • Cell phone protection: Up to $800 in coverage, with a $25 deductible, if you pay your cell phone bill with the card.

  • Trip cancellation/interruption protection: Up to $5,000 reimbursement for a covered reason when you pay for travel with the card.

  • Lyft credits: Receive a $5 Lyft credit each month after you pay for three rides with your card.

  • Free ShopRunner membership: Get unlimited, free two-day shipping and free return shipping at over 140 online stores.

How Bilt works for renters

Anyone can join the separate Bilt Rewards program for free and make rent payments through the Bilt Rewards app, cardholder or not. When you set up a Bilt Rent account in the app, you'll be assigned a routing and account number, which lets you submit rent through your regular payment site or portal. Even if your landlord accepts checks only, you can still pay through the Bilt app and earn points because Bilt will submit a check on your behalf.

But holding the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card comes with added advantages, including supercharged rewards:

  • If you live in a rental unit that’s part of the "Bilt Alliance" (which includes more than 3.5 million units across the U.S. managed by The Blackstone Group, Equity Residential and more), you can pay your rent directly in the Bilt Rewards app with the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card and earn points for doing so. You can pay with a different card this way, but you'll owe a 3% processing fee in that case.

  • If you don't live in a Bilt-affiliated property but you do have the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card, you can still use it to pay rent through the app and earn points. In this scenario, Bilt will send your landlord a check.

  • If you don’t live in a Bilt-affiliated property and don't hold the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card, you're able to pay rent through the app, but you'll earn only 250 points for doing so, and you'll owe the processing fee.

🤓Nerdy Tip

You don't necessarily have to be a renter at all to earn Bilt Rewards. You can join the program and earn points through various promotions, such as by linking travel loyalty accounts, dining at restaurants that have partnered with Bilt, etc.

Compare to Other Cards

See Terms
0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
17.24%-28.24% Variable APR
21.49%-28.49% Variable APR
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Benefits and Perks

Pay rent and earn rewards

It's often not possible to pay rent directly with a credit card. Many landlords don't accept cards as payment, and those who do might charge expensive processing fees for such transactions. Certain third-party payment processors like Plastiq can be a workaround, but those, too, will cost you in processing fees.

Not only does the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card let you pay your rent without incurring any processing fees, and not only does the card have no annual fee, but on top of all that, you can earn rewards on those rent payments. That's a powerful combination you won't find elsewhere.

The only caveat is that rent payments will not count toward your Bilt Rewards elite status. (More information on status tiers below.)

Competitive rewards rates

The Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card isn’t just for rent. Since it’s a Mastercard, it can be used almost anywhere that credit cards are accepted. When you use the card, you’ll earn 5 points per $1 spent on Lyft, 3 points per $1 on dining, 2 points per $1 on travel, 1 point per $1 spent on rent (up to 100,000 points per calendar year), and 1 point per $1 on other purchases.

The Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card isn’t the only no-annual-fee card to offer heightened rewards on everyday spending categories. The Chase Freedom Unlimited®, for example, earns 5% cash back on travel booked through Chase; 3% back on dining and drugstores; and 1.5% points on all other purchases. But it, and other cards in its class, generally won’t earn rewards on rent unless you are willing to incur processing fees that would cancel out the value of those rewards.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Bilt cardholders will earn accelerated points across non-rent spending during the 24-hour window on the first of every month. On "Rent Day" each month, cardholders will earn 6x points on dining, 4x points on travel and 2x points on other purchases. (Rent payments will still earn 1x points up to a max of 100,000 points per calendar year). You can amplify your rewards by using the card to pay for recurring expenses like utilities or streaming services on the first of each month.

Plentiful, flexible redemption options

Rewards earned from the Bilt program are flexible and can be redeemed in a variety of ways. The value of your points will vary based on which option you choose, including:

  • Pay rent or receive a statement credit: 0.55 cents per point.

  • Down payment on a home: 1.5 cents per point.

  • Transfer points 1:1 to travel partners: Point values vary depending on the partner. (See list of partners below.)

  • Book travel through the Bilt travel portal: 1.25 cents per point

  • Fitness: Redeem points for classes with SoulCycle, Rumble and more. Point values vary depending on class and studio location, but typically it's 1.25 cents per point.

  • Home decor and curated art: Ranges between 0.7 to 5 cents per point, depending on the item.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Transferring credit card rewards to travel partners can give outsize value. For example, NerdWallet values Hyatt points at 2.3 cents cents each. This is a baseline value, drawn from real-world data, not a maximized value. In other words, you should aim for award redemptions that offer at least this value or more from your Hyatt points.

Earn interest on your points

Renters can earn Bilt points in a variety of ways, like on new leases and renewals in Bilt Alliance properties, even if they don’t hold the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card. Bilt Rewards members can also be eligible for extra incentives, such as bonus points, depending on their status tier. The more points a member earns in a calendar year, the more benefits they can be eligible for in this tiered program:

  • Blue: Fewer than 25,000 points earned.

  • Silver: 25,000 - 49,999 points earned.

  • Gold: 50,000 - 99,999 points earned.

  • Platinum: 100,000 or more points earned.

Once you become at least a Silver member in the Bilt Rewards tier system, you’ll be eligible to earn interest on your stash of points. Each month, you’ll receive interest in the form of bonus points based on your average daily points balance for each 30-day period. While it may not amount to much (the interest rate is tied to the published national savings rate from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.), it’s a unique added-value feature for the card.

🤓Nerdy Tip

You can fast-track your way to Bilt status by spending on any debit or credit card linked to your Bilt mobile wallet at partners like Lyft or restaurants in the Bilt dining program. All spending on your Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card will also count toward elite status, with the exception of rental payments.

Extra perks

The primary auto insurance you get on rental vehicles you pay for with the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card sets it apart from most other no-annual-fee travel cards. This coverage means you can avoid paying more for insurance at the rental counter or getting your own insurer involved if you incur damage, saving on deductibles and potentially increased premiums.

You'll also receive up to $800 in cell phone protection when your phone is damaged, stolen or involuntarily lost (cracked screens, cosmetic damage and scratches aren't covered). To qualify, you need to pay your monthly statement with the card and a $25 deductible. Cell phone insurance has become a more common card benefit in recent years, but the $25 deductible is as low as you'll find on any card.

🤓Nerdy Tip

New in April 2024, Bilt elite members will also receive benefits with helicopter charter company BLADE, including lounge access, discounted prices and even a free flight (depending on your status level). All Bilt Rewards members (with or without the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card) will earn 2x Bilt Reward points for paid bookings with BLADE by using a debit or credit card linked to their Bilt digital wallet.

Drawbacks and Considerations

No sign-up bonus

One knock against the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card is the lack of a sign-up bonus. Other no-annual-fee travel rewards cards offer an initial pile of points or cash back once you complete some basic requirements.

For example, with the Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card, you can grab the following bonus: Earn a $200 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in purchases in the first 3 months.You can also earn 2% cash back on all purchases, every day. While it lacks transfer partners, that sign-up bonus combined with a flat 2% cash back on all purchases may provide more ongoing value for some people.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Unlike cards that earn flexible points such as Chase Ultimate Rewards® and AmEx Membership Rewards, the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card is the only card that earns Bilt Rewards. That means there are no multi-card combinations that allow you to supercharge your rewards.

You'll want to use the card at least 5 times a month

Another caveat with the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card is that you’ll have to make at least five purchases with it per billing cycle to be eligible to earn meaningful rewards. For many, that won't be a steep requirement, and there’s no minimum purchase amount stated. But it does mean you’ll want to use the card for more than rent each month.

What happens if you make fewer than five purchases in a billing cycle? In that case, you will earn a flat 250 points for your rent payment and no rewards on any other purchases that cycle.

Limited use for people who don't rent

The Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card is built for renters. Sure, the card lets you earn bonus rewards on dining and travel. But other no-annual-fee cards, like the Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card, also earn bonus rewards in those categories. The ability to pay rent is unique for a no-annual-fee rewards card that also provides access to travel partners. But if you won't pay rent with the card, you’ll be missing out on its core value proposition.

How To Decide If It's Right For You

The Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card is a game-changer for renters looking to earn travel rewards. A monthly rent payment is the biggest recurring expense faced by a large portion of the population, and until the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card, there was often no way to pay that expense with a credit card without incurring some kind of processing fee.

Now you can use a card, without processing fees, and earn valuable (and transferable) rewards. The process is easy for both renters and landlords, making the Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card a solid choice for qualifying renters looking to get rewarded for their monthly payments.

Alternate Pick: Multiple bonus rewards in one card
Quarterly 5% bonus categories and useful everyday rewards

The Chase Freedom Flex℠ lets you earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 per quarter in rotating categories, plus an unlimited 3% back on dining and drugstore purchases.


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