Plastiq charges 2.5% to charge your credit card for bills that require you paying your bill on time, and sometimes runs promotion offering a reduced interest rate. Specifically, Plastiq was offering only 1.75% to pay your rent with a MasterCard. All you have to do it sign up, enter the service providers mailing address and viola, your bill is paid! Plastiq accepts all major credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and now Discover cards. Plastiq also allows you to set repeat payments for recurring bills, which is a huge time saver and avoids late charges.
Currently, Plastiq has a special offer for Lehigh Student Housing Rentals web visitors!
Sign up now and make a payment of at least $20 to earn $200 to spend without a service fee.
For students who may have signed up for a new credit card, after reading our last two blog post, Credit score education 101 and What's your credit score?, were approved, and as a result, are trying to meet the minimum spending requirement - usually around $3,000 - $5,000 on a new account, paying your bills with Plastiq is generally a no-brainer. The reason is because a bonus of 50,000 - 100,000 miles could be worth more than $1,000, whereas the Plastiq service fees are relatively small (only 2.5% of your bill).
For example, if you have to spend $5,000 on your new Chase Reserve Card or Chase Marriott Rewards credit card, which is currently offering a 100,000 and 80,000 point bonus, respectively, in order to satisfy the minimum spending threshold, the service fee on paying $5,000 worth of bills, such as your college tuition or your rent, is only $137.50. Numerous web sites, like The Points Guy, value the perks of the Chase Reserve credit card and the bonus points to be well over $1,700, which includes the 100,000 points, $300 travel statement credit, Priority Pass and more! The Chase Marriott Rewards card could easily be worth $1,000, including Silver Elite status, 2 free nights at a Category 8 property, and a free anniversary night at a Category 1-5 property. Therefore, paying the $137.50 is well worth both of these Chase credit cards.
So, what are you waiting for? Sign up for Plastiq today! Pay your bills without the hassle, pay on time, and earn major credit cards on all your purchases!
We'd love to hear about your experience with Plastiq!
Why is building your credit so important? Well, as mentioned in our last blog post, What's your credit score?, landlords generally require a credit application, which can impact your selection of off-campus housing. For a list of properties available, click here.
More importantly, building and increasing your available credit can help increase your credit score. How? By reducing your overall credit utilization ratio, which is the ratio of outstanding credit divided by total credit available. Credit utilization weighs in at 30% of your overall credit score. So, reducing your credit utilization ratio, by increasing your available credit, ultimately increases your credit score just by building credit.
For example, if you have $100 of credit and you have a balance of $10, your credit utilization is 10% ($10/$100), which is not so good. If you build your credit to $200, your utilization ratio is now only 5% ($10/$200), which is much better.
It is true, however, that a credit card application generally results in a hard pull, or inquiry, on your credit score. The result is a temporary hit to your credit score by 5 to 6 points, which reverses itself in a few months at the maximum. What's important is the increase in credit available, to decrease your credit utilization ratio and increase your overall credit score.
You're probably thinking, that's crazy and contrary to all the advice you've ever heard. And that was the advice we also received, until we learned about how credit scores are actually calculated! If you have very low credit outstanding, you may already have a very good credit score. Sign up for a free account at Credit Sesame to check your credit score. If you do have a very good credit score, consider applying a travel rewards that offers significant travel benefits, like the Chase Reserve rewards credit card that comes with a 100,000 points bonus if certain spending thresholds are met and a $300 travel statement credit, just to name two.
With that said, credit is a double edged sword and must be used cautiously. If you have credit balances outstanding, and possibly a lower credit score, getting approved for additional credit may prove difficult. That doesn't mean you should not try to increase your credit available or plan to pay off your balances, even just the minimum payments. Paying timely can contribute up to 30% of your credit score, so pay on time, every time, even if it's just the minimum payment.
Furthermore, credit cards sometimes have promotions with low or zero introductory rates, which could help reduce the interest fees charged to your outstanding balances. Figuring out a plan once you are in debt is vital, which is why we recommend paying off credit balances in full every month to begin with.
So next time you get a credit card offer in the mail, don't be so quick to throw it out. If it's a good offer, consider applying. Your credit score will thank you.
5 (Totally Legal) Tricks to Boost Your Credit Score Fast
Generally, a credit report will include your credit score and is an objective way for a landlord to determine whether to accept or reject your application for housing. A credit score, even though it does not tell the whole story, provides the landlord with information into the applicant's financial history.
As a landlord, or property management company acting on behalf of a landlord, we review your credit history to understand how you manage your finances, specifically your credit, and whether you pay your bills on time, late, in full, or have balances due and outstanding. Your credit score and history is ultimately but one of several factors, which we will discuss in subsequent posts, that goes into the decision of whether to accept your application. As such, understanding how your credit score works and what information is on your credit score should be a top priority for students seeking to apply for housing for the upcoming 2017 - 2018 school year. Check out our properties available here.
There are several free methods of requesting your credit score, such as Credit Sesame, that allow you to review your credit for free and without an inquiry. Other free sites are available as well.
One major factor, accounting for 35% of your credit score, is your payment history. In other words, do you pay your bills on time? If you pay your bills on time, even if you carry a balance, your credit score is likely going to increase over time. The more late payments and delinquent accounts, the lower your credit score. Credit Sesame will show you what your payment history is, so you could see how you pay your bills.
Another key credit score factor is your credit utilization. Your credit utilization accounts for 30% of your credit score. How much credit do you have outstanding relative to your total credit available? The higher your balances, the higher your utilization rate, the lower your credit score. Credit Sesame will show you what your total credit available is and what your total outstanding balance is.
So, if you don't know your credit score, what are you waiting for?
Sign up for Credit Sesame today!
Do you know what your credit score is?
Welcome students! We are very excited for the opportunity to serve you in your quest for off-campus housing in Bethlehem, PA, right in the heart of the Lehigh Valley. We currently have four houses that range in size and location around Lehigh University. For more information about our properties, click here.
Lehigh Student Housing Rentals ("LSHR" or #LSHR) is the premiere off campus student housing provider near Lehigh University, Moravian College, Muhlenberg College and St. Luke’s- Temple Medical School. The most difficult and stressful tasks students have, arguably more so than classes, is finding the perfect off-campus student housing! Students want to be in close proximity to campus, but at the same time be far enough to feel independent and responsible. Students want modern and renovated off-campus housing, comforts they’re used to at home. Stress no more!
At Lehigh Student Housing Rentals, our mission is to provide the most comfortable off-campus student housing experience possible. As the expression goes in Spanish, "Mi casa, su casa." Our goal is to make you feel like "Our house, is your house." Which leads to our core values and purpose: respect for you, our students and tenants, your student housing and the Bethlehem community as a whole.
Our vision is to create a thriving off-campus student community that embraces diversity and inclusiveness. Lehigh University is certainly a leader in this respect and Lehigh Student Housing Rentals is honored to follow their lead. Finally, our dream is to provide students with everlasting memories of your college experiences, right here in the comfort of your Lehigh Student Housing Rental!
On this blog we will provide you with updates on Lehigh Student Housing Rentals availability, acquisitions, renovation projects, student finance, credit cards, ways to save on student loans, how to improve your credit scores, all about real estate education, traveling the world, saving money on shopping, and a whole lot more!
As you approach mid-terms and soon finals, we are preparing our houses for the 2017 - 2018 school year! We are excited to meet you, show you how we're making our houses the most student friendly off-campus housing provider and learn how we could help you make the most of your college and off-campus housing experience.
We would love to hear from you. Please leave your comments below, Like Us on Facebook, or ask your questions through our Contact Us page.
What are your goals for the rest of 2016?
#LSHR is a blog about off-campus student housing, financial education, networking, travel and helping you build your career.