What is a recommended Credit Card for Real Estate Investors?

10 Replies

For the longest time we've been using a bank credit card that generates no rewards. (We do pay it off every month).  Next year, we've set a target to take a family vacation to Hawaii during our cold North Dakota winter months.  Any ideas on a good credit card we could be using to generate points to offset our vacation expenses?? We spend 10's of thousands a year on real estate related expenses that we could be getting some rewards for!!

For travel credit cards, most of your benefit comes with the sign up bonus. You can get 80,000 miles on some cards, which could be two tickets in the continental US. Hawaii is going to take more miles and traveling from North Dakota means connecting flights, which means even more miles. 

Here is what I would do (have done). Sign up for a air travel card like Delta and get the sign up bonus. Fulfill the spend requirement to get all your miles, then close the card. They will let you reopen in two years and get the sign on bonus again. At the same time open up a straight cash back card like Discover that pays 1% or more cash back. Discover has promotions that pay up to 5% on certain spends, but you always get at least 1%. We use that as our regular card after we fulfill a travel sign on bonus. We also pay attention to the bonus categories so we maximize cash back. We also have a Costco Visa which gives us extra cash back at Costco and on travel. 

Also be aware you can get sign up bonus from every major carrier, so you can get points with Delta, United and American. You can do the same thing with hotel chains and often end up with one free night just for signing up. 

@Amy Raye Rogers . Check out the All the Hacks podcast and The Points Guy.

You can open up personal cards in both your name and, if applicable, your SO. And you can open up biz cards.

The Southwest cards are great as they offer free companion tickets for each card holder after meeting the initial spending criteria (it’s BOGO for points and if you pay).

I've been using the American Express Platinum Credit Card. In my opinion, it's the best credit card for world travelers who want those travel perks. It also has a good point system where you can get free or discounted items on a frequent basis. It comes with an annual fee, but you can get that fee back plus more through all the perks it provides. As stated above, check out The Points Guy for a detailed breakdown. 

@Amy Raye Rogers , I agree with a lot of what @Joe Splitrock said above except I would look at Southwest instead.  Southwest now flies to Hawaii as well. Based on what you said, you should easily be able to earn the Southwest Companion Pass.  There was an excellent podcast on almost exactly this yesterday on ChooseFI.  They’ve done their own podcasts on this as well, but this time they had a guest.  She was fantastic and pretty much recommends what I would.  I went to her website afterwards and saw she charges people like $1,300 for what seems to be much of the content she discussed on the episode.  If people actually pay this, perhaps I found a new side hustle.  lol.  

If you have questions or would like to discuss, feel free to PM me.  We haven’t paid for a flight in probably 3+ years since we started doing this.  No upsell here.  Although, if you wanted to use my referral link (which is free) to sign up for the card which would kick me back a few points (at no reduction of your bonus points earned), I would happily agree.  ;-)

Either way, sounds like you have a lot of rewards and free travel coming your way.  Cheers. 

Originally posted by @Mark S. :

@Amy Raye Rogers , I agree with a lot of what @Joe Splitrock said above except I would look at Southwest instead.  Southwest now flies to Hawaii as well. Based on what you said, you should easily be able to earn the Southwest Companion Pass.  There was an excellent podcast on almost exactly this yesterday on ChooseFI.  They’ve done their own podcasts on this as well, but this time they had a guest.  She was fantastic and pretty much recommends what I would.  I went to her website afterwards and saw she charges people like $1,300 for what seems to be much of the content she discussed on the episode.  If people actually pay this, perhaps I found a new side hustle.  lol.  

 ;-)

Either way, sounds like you have a lot of rewards and free travel coming your way.  Cheers. 

 Southwest doesn't fly to North Dakota, which is why I left them off my list. 

@Amy Raye Rogers best bet is chase cards. ultimate rewards let you pool your points from different cards. you can convert your points to travel credit through their portal and if you have a premium card(annual fee), your points are worth 1.25 to 1.5 points in the travel portal. sometimes its cheaper to book this way than with points through airlines and you also earn airline points on it. you can also convert your points to airline miles. most of the time its cheaper to book international airlines like air france that flies on delta than to use delta miles. same with singapore flies on united. there are a few extra steps with booking these miles. 
As for earning, I use chase freedom flex for rotating 5x categories, 3x dining, ink cash for 5x for office supplies and 5x for internet, cable and, cell phone. I buy a bunch of home depot and lowes gift cards from office depot to get 5x instead of paying directly at the store earning only 1 point, they also got lots of other gc like amazon you can earn 5x points on. i also rotate between the sapphire reserve, preferred and the business ink preferred.

When getting into the credit card points game you have to really research to learn the best deals, sweet spot on award charts and rules. FYI chase has a 5/24 rule which is cant open more than 5 cards in the last 24 months or they will deny you. amex has its own set of rules. also need to read the fine print some cards are once per lifetime signup bonus. there is a load of info out there on flyertalk forums, also you can check out the points guy or boardingarea. good luck going down the rabbit hole lol.

@Amy Raye Rogers already some great advice on here, but I’ll just add my personal experience with American Express. I think if you are traveling frequently alone the platinum card makes a lot of sense for the perks it comes with and the large sign on bonuses it offers.

I have personally used Amex for years. I have business cards (you can get sign on bonuses for getting cards in different LLCs) and personal card. I like that I can combine the points into one account and I also like that the balance on the business card never shows up on my personal credit report.

One thing that has been annoying me about them over the past year is that you have to book through their travel site to use points and I have been noticing that their prices are sometimes considerably higher than booking directly with airline/hotel/car company. Some other cards like Chase and Capital One allow you to just use points to pay off certain items on your statement so you can book the travel wherever you’d like.

If you like straight cash back, I believe Citi offers a decent option at 1.5 or 2% back.