Renting On Credit: New Platforms Modernize Monthly Multifamily Transactions
From advertising to tenant screening, landlords and property managers have grown accustomed to using digital tools to boost efficiency. Until recently, full-scale optimization has skipped over the basic monthly rental payment transaction, with 78% of more than 100 million renters using paper checks. But now, two programs, backed by global leaders in financial services, are incentivizing tenants to pay the rent on credit, with perks like automatic credit reporting and points towards future purchases.
All-In-One Digital Platform Streamlines Rent Collection
Launched in October 2022, Story automates the invoicing and receipt of online rent payments with an all-in-one digital platform for owners, management companies, and servicers of small and mid-size property owners and operators unlikely to have existing management systems. This digital tool is tailor-made to simplify and streamline previously tedious and time-consuming tasks.
Through its app or an online portal, tenants can pay their rent with a credit card, debit card, or bank account. It allows rental managers to send invoices, receive payments, and send late notices through Story’s online dashboard. Backed by one of the largest financial services companies, Story also comes with bank-grade security features and a host of online resources, like Moody’s Analytics REIS.
Automation Saves Landlords Time and Energy
Story is one of several new rent payment automation platforms that many multifamily landlords might say couldn’t have come soon enough.
By streamlining the often-arduous rent collection process, owners, management companies, and servicers stand to save a considerable amount of time, effort, and aggravation. Story automates the rent collection process, from payment processing to invoicing.
Story’s digital platform includes a hub of resources to empower its users to maximize their investment potential. It provides market insights that can inform everyday business decisions, like setting the price of rent or screening new tenants, as well as educational information, such as trends and tips.
A Credit Card Loyalty Program ‘Bilt’ for Renters
Renters also stand to reap benefits from choosing plastic over paper.
Bilt Rewards, a new loyalty program specifically for renters, offers perks to tenants who use its credit card to pay the rent. Qualifying U.S. renters in the program earn points that can be used on plane tickets, fitness classes, Amazon.com purchases, future rent payments, or even a down payment on a house.
Licensed by Mastercard, Bilt Rewards has more than half a million customers and has been rolled out to more than 2.5 million apartment units nationwide since launching in 2021.
Renting On Credit Scores Points for Convenience
Bilt Rewards has been scoring points with renters for making paying the rent as convenient as paying the cable bill. Unlike paying by check, rent payments made through this platform provide fringe benefits like a credit card, providing more chances to build personal equity.
Until recently, one of renters’ largest monthly expenses did not typically contribute to their credit histories. With Bilt Rewards, regular rent payments can be automatically reported to any of the three major credit bureaus, allowing renters to build positive credit history with a previously unreportable monthly expense. And once enrolled, participants will likely never again have to worry about forgetting to pay the rent on time.
Although renting on credit is not a novel idea, the backing of large financial services companies lends a sense of legitimacy to a trend that could substantially benefit the multifamily sector in the long run.
Interested in the multifamily real estate investment market? Contact Arbor today to learn about our array of multifamily and single-family rental financing options and view our other market research and multifamily posts in our research section.