Separately, I posted How to Earn Rewards by Paying Rent. There aren’t as many ways to earn rewards from paying your mortgage, but it is still possible. Here’s a primer on the best ways to earn rewards from paying mortgage…
Pay Mortgage with a Credit Card via Plastiq
Plastiq is a bill payment service that allows paying many types of bills with a credit card for a fee (currently 2.35% for the Brex Card and 2.85% for all other cards). Unfortunately, only Mastercard and Discover credit cards can be used to pay your mortgage. Worse, both Capital One and US Bank ban the use of their Mastercards to pay mortgage. For all other Mastercard and Discover cards, though, you can use Plastiq to pay your mortgage and you will earn rewards as if it was a regular purchase — you will not incur cash advance fees.
More details about Plastiq can be found here: Complete guide to Plastiq credit card payments.
Earn rewards through welcome bonuses
Many banks offer huge bonuses when you sign up for a new card and meet the minimum spend requirements. For example, it’s common to see an offer for 60,000 points or more after $4,000 spend in 3 months. With these big welcome bonuses, it can be well worth paying Plastiq’s 2.85% fee in order to meet the minimum spend requirements by paying your mortgage via credit card.
The following list shows the best current welcome bonuses based on our estimate of first year value and limited to cards that (to the best of our knowledge) can be used to pay mortgage through Plastiq. First year value estimates include the value of points or other rewards earned minus the first year annual fee and minus the “cost” of the minimum spend (for various reasons, we assume a 3% cost, which is very close to Plastiq’s 2.85% fee). As you can see, rewards earned from welcome bonuses can be huge:
|Card Offer and Review|
Earn spend bonuses: elite status, free nights, etc.
Many credit cards offer bonuses for meeting high spend thresholds. You can find a comprehensive list here: Best big spend bonuses. Whether or not it makes sense paying Plastiq’s fee in order to reach these thresholds depends upon how much you value elite status or other rewards earned.
Here are a few examples of big spend bonuses available with Mastercard credit cards:
- Chase Aeroplan Card: Renew 25K status w/ $15K spend ⚬ Status Boost w/ $50K spend ⚬ Priority Reward w/ $100K, $250K, $500K, or $750K spend ⚬ Free award companion for rest of calendar year and all of next with $1Million spend
- IHG Premier Card or IHG Premier Business Card: 10K bonus points + $100 statement credit after you spend $20K in a calendar year + make one additional purchase ⚬ Diamond status after $40K in purchases + one additional purchase in a calendar year. Business card only: Free night certificate (up to 40K points) after $60K in purchases + one additional purchase in a calendar year.
- American Airlines cards: Most American Airlines cards now earn Loyalty Points in addition to redeemable miles with spend. This makes it possible to earn elite status without flying. Some also offer extra bonuses for large spend. Here are some examples:
- Citi® AAdvantage Platinum Select® World Elite MasterCard: $125 AA Flight Discount with $20K membership year spend.
- Citi® AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard: Earn 10,000 additional Loyalty Points after you spend $40,000 in purchases during the qualifying status year.
- CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum Select MasterCard: $99 companion certificate with $30K membership year spend.
- AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite MasterCard: $99 companion certificate with $20K membership year spend.
- AAdvantage Aviator World Elite Business Mastercard: $99 companion certificate with $30K membership year spend.
- Barclaycard JetBlue Plus, or JetBlue Business: Spend $50,000 and get Mosaic status which offers free checked bags; expedited security; early boarding; free drinks; enhanced point earnings; and 15,000 bonus points upon qualifying.
Earn rewards through spend
Not many cards earn rewards worth more than 2.85% when not considering welcome bonuses, bonus categories, or big-spend bonuses, but there are a few. Based on our estimated point values (Reasonable Redemption Values), you can earn up to 3% with the right card. That said, that’s such a small increment in value over Plastiq’s 2.85% fee that I wouldn’t recommend bothering with this unless you need the points for an even more valuable award.
The following table shows the cards that earn the best rewards for spend that is not within a bonus category. The list is limited to cards that (to the best of our knowledge) can be used to pay mortgage through Plastiq. If you press “next” often enough, you’ll find all matching cards in our database, but the first ones are those that offer the best rewards for everyday spend.
|Card Info Name and Earning Rate (no offer)|
It’s possible to earn huge rewards by regularly signing up for new credit cards and using your mortgage spend to earn welcome bonuses. In some cases, even without a welcome bonus, it can make sense to pay Plastiq’s fees in order to earn “big-spend” bonuses such as elite status, free nights, companion tickets, etc. I don’t usually recommend paying your mortgage through Plastiq without earning a welcome bonus or big spend bonus, but it can make sense at times. For example, by using the Citi Double Cash card, you can earn 2 ThankYou points per dollar. After Plastiq’s 2.85% fee, that’s like paying 1.425 cents per point. That can make sense if you also have a Premier or Prestige card so that you can transfer points to loyalty programs in order to book high value rewards.
See also: How to Earn Rewards by Paying Rent.