Most landlords refuse to take credit or even debit cards as payment. Frankly, there’s little upside for landlords to do so, given that they’d have to pay merchant fees each time you pay with a card.
Rent is therefore one of the few major expenses you couldn’t charge to your cards, and as rent in Canada soars, it’s a pity that you couldn’t use it to get credit card perks to ease the burden even a little.
Enter Chexy, a Canadian digital platform that effectively lets you charge your rent on a credit card. Plus, you’ll be happy to know that they even take American Express, and that rent payments now code as a recurring bill payment.
What Is Chexy?
Chexy is Toronto-based startup that lets you pay your rent using a credit card (for a nominal fee), electronic funds transfer (EFT), and soon, debit cards.
Chexy not only makes payments more convenient, but also allows you to earn perks and rewards, and even build credit through the Chexy platform in the future.
The concept is similar to RBC Ventures’s GetDigs, which was unfortunately shut down in late 2020. Chexy is here to stay, though, and it has big ambitions to grow in the rental and payments space.
How to Pay Rent Through Chexy
Note that Chexy currently supports paying rent to landlords who accept Interac e-Transfer. Payments via cheque and building management services are not currently supported by Chexy, though there are plans to add these in the future.
To create an account with Chexy, you’ll only need to put in your full name, email, and password.
Upon signing up, you’ll then be asked to fully set up your account and payments.
For this process, you’d first need to enter your landlord and rental information, including your monthly rent and payment date.
Then, as a verification measure, you’ll need to link a bank account through a secure portal and upload your lease.
Once your lease has been uploaded, you’re ready to set up your credit card and start paying rent. Chexy will charge your credit card four days before your rent due date, and then send an Interac e-Transfer to your landlord on your behalf.
It’s important to note that Chexy charges a 1.75% fee for all credit/charge card payments to cover a portion of their processing fees.
I personally tested out the service to pay my rent, and I’m happy to report that the process works seamlessly.
How to Maximize Rent Payments with Chexy
For renters, Chexy can be a key tool to reach your Miles & Points goals, since it allows you to earn rewards on one of the biggest monthly expenses.
The primary example of maximizing the value of Chexy is to use your rent payments to meet large minimum spending requirements.
Premium cards like the American Express Platinum Card require large minimum spending requirements in exchange for larger rewards, like $10,000 (CAD) in net purchases in the first three months to receive a big boost of Membership Rewards (MR) points.
Say you pay $2,500 a month in rent. Factoring in Chexy’s 1.75% fee, you’d pay $2,544 in total. For three months, that’s $7,621, leaving you with only $2,369 left to meet the spend requirement.
You or your partner could perhaps then sign up for another card to pay for all other expenses, even unlocking additional minimum spends in the meantime.
If you’re looking to earn cash back instead of travel rewards, you’ll be happy to know that your rent payment codes as a recurring bill payment.
This means that you could use, say, the Scotiabank Momentum Visa Infinite Card, which earns a 4% cash back on groceries and monthly recurring payments.
Factoring in Chexy’s 1.75% fee, you’d still net 2.25% cash back on your monthly rent payments. If you pay $2,000 in rent, you’d pay $2,035 including Chexy’s fee, while still earning $81.40 in cash back on the Scotiabank Momentum Visa Infinite Card.
Subtract the $35 fee you paid, and you’re still getting a respectable $46.40 as an effective rebate towards your rent during months when you aren’t trying to meet a minimum spend.
Alternatively, consider using a credit card that earns a strong return on everyday spending, like the Business Platinum Card from American Express, which earns 1.25 MR points per dollar spent.
Continuing with the example of $2,000 monthly rent, you’d be earning 2,543 MR points on the $2,035 monthly payment, which we’d value at $55.95 – easily outweighing the $35 fee.
It’s worth noting that Chexy also accepts international credit cards. You’ll just pay a 2.5% fee instead of the 1.75% fee for Canadian-issued cards.
Earn Rent Cash Back with Chexy
One of Chexy’s additional features is the Chexy Perks portal, which allows you to earn cash back by shopping online. Think of it as similar to the Aeroplan eStore or Rakuten, but you can use the cash back you’ve earned towards your rent payments instead.
At this time, Chexy’s partner merchants are more limited than the Aeroplan eStore or Rakuten, but there still are a number of noteworthy examples.
For instance, you can get 1.84% cash back towards Apple purchases, and unlike the Aeroplan eStore with its usual exclusions, you can buy the latest iPhones and MacBooks and still earn cash back.
As with any cash back site, you must enter an online store through the Chexy Perks portal, so that your account can be credited with your reward.
If you pay rent on a monthly basis, make sure to add Chexy Perks to the list of shopping portals to consider when you’re about to make a big purchase.
Refer a Friend to Chexy
Another perk of using Chexy is its refer-a-friend program. Upon signing up through your referral link, your friend gets $5 (CAD) and you also get $5 (CAD) in credits that you can use towards your next monthly rent payment.
Plus, on top of the $5 per referral, you also earn tiered bonus rewards for when you refer more people: $10 for five referrals, $20 for 10 referrals, etc., up to $1,000 for 100 referrals.
Chexy provides a platform for you to pay with a credit card and earn rewards on your monthly rent payments. The service charges your card four days before your rent day, and then sends an Interac e-Transfer to your landlord on your behalf.
By paying with credit cards through Chexy with a 1.75% fee, you’re able to factor a major recurring expense into your Miles & Points goals.
You can use Chexy to help reach a high minimum spend requirement for a new credit card, or you can net a tidy sum of points with another card with a high return on regular spending.
Sweetening the deal are Chexy’s cash back and referral programs, which enable you to earn cash back through the Chexy shopping portal and refer friends and earn bonuses when they sign up, both of which allow you to use the earned rewards towards your rent.