Paying rent is rarely a rewarding experience. No matter what your rent: to income ratio is, it almost always feels like a blow. But what if it didn’t burn a hole in your bank balance? That would certainly take the sting out of it now, wouldn’t it? And what if you could be rewarded for rent payment? That would be like icing on the cake. As it turns out, tenants across India are about to be able to do just that.
CRED, a members-only credit card payment app has just hatched a shiny golden proposition called CRED RentPay for rent payment via credit card. Kunal Shah, the brains behind CRED and RentPay explains, “When a CRED member opts for CRED’s RentPay service, the user is able to avail of a 45 to 50 day credit period. Moreover, the user earns a generous amount of points – not to mention that they can reach milestones for rewards at a faster pace and can also benefit from annual fee waivers on achieving milestones.” A parallel might serve to draw up a clear picture of the product – it works a lot like airline miles or loyalty points offered by hotel chains.
According to Kunal Shah’s team at CRED, “What you have here is a simple three-step process. Enter your rent amount. Enter the bank details of your landlord. Add your address, and you are done! The rent payment gets instantly transferred and you get to access additional perks.”
The benefits of RentPay transcend just rewards on rent payment via credit card. Depending on your Credit Card billing cycle you can also get access to 45 to 50 days of credit. Given the dire need for liquidity amidst the lockdown, this is a much-appreciated advantage among the users whom the product has been pre-rolled to. Tarun Rathod, a 29-year-old CRED member and RentPay user from Delhi days, “I’ve used a similar app in the past, but I’ve never come across something this easy ever before. Not to mention the fact that I am happy and excited to know that I will have earned points on my credit card … and also CRED coins once I pay my credit card bill. Otherwise I have always felt miserable and cranky after paying my rent. I know it’s only 10% of my salary but I can’t explain; it was just very upsetting in the absence of rewards”
Meanwhile, Prachi Patel, a 25-year-old fashion stylist and writer from Mumbai is grateful for the extended credit period. “A lot of my clients are paying late on account of the lockdown. While I put on my best brave face and gladly agreed to payment deadline extensions, I really don’t want to default on my rent. My landlady is a senior and I didn’t want to put her through any stress. RentPay will allow me to pay her via my credit card. That way everybody’s happy: my clients, my landlady and me, because I get rewards and once I pay my bill I will get 25,000 CRED coins – the same amount as my Rs 25,000 rent – out of this.”
Besides the big benefits of credit and CRED coins, tenants paying their rent via CRED RentPay may also earn up to 3.3% (depending on the card) extra points. That’s a nice bundle of three delightful benefits to make paying rent much less gloomy.
By now you most likely have two questions. One – how does one go about signing up for this? And two – what’s the catch? Why would someone do all of this for me? There’s got to be a business model.
Let’s tackle question 2 first because transparency is fundamental to everything finance-related. CRED’s fintech proposition works on partnerships with the brands that offer the rewards and on nominal charges. You pay a small fee to effect a NEFT transaction, isn’t that right? Similarly you pay a maximum amount of 1.5% of your rent sum as fees for your transaction. Also, just like credit card rewards from your bank, you gain CRED points only when you pay your credit card bill on time. So, to answer your question. There is no catch – there is just a nominal fee and good old-fashioned positive reinforcement.
While we’re being transparent it is also important to underscore the effort that goes into maintaining the safety and security of sensitive user information. Kunal Shah’s team assures users that robust internal fraud checks and fraud prevention SOPs are in place. “In this type of business, security is continuous and ongoing. There’s always going to be elements trying to infiltrate any bank or financial service provider’s systems. The attack is continuous and as such, the defense should also be continuous. Our people are on the job 24×7, one step ahead, to ensure that user information is perfectly secure.”
With all of the nitty-gritties out of the way, we’re looking at one big question – how can one jump aboard? Well, as long as you have a smartphone handy and have a credit score of above 750, all you need to do is download the app. CRED is available on both Play Store and Apple App Store. The app is free for download. Then you simply need to register with all your credit card details. Once a member of CRED you can opt for RentPay.
Now that’s some good news amidst all the gloom and doom, isn’t it?
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