Wednesday, April 26, 2017

CardUp - A Service Perfect for Renters?

First off, this isn't a sponsored post. I just stumbled upon their services and I thought that it is a pretty good service.

All right, so what is this CardUp thing I'm talking about?

Blah blah blah. What does it do?

Instead of making monthly bank transfer to your landlord, you through them. They will transfer the money to your landlord, take a processing fee, and charge the whole amount to your credit card.


Simple. Credit card rewards.

Their processing fee is 2.6%. For this 2.6% fee, you get your regular bank transfer to be "transformed" into a credit card payment and you rack up spending on your card.

Since the processing fee is 2.6%, all you have to do is to find rewards that give you a higher "return".

Of course, CardUp is not that stupid. Their example is to charge your expenses to a travel/miles credit card and rack up miles so you can redeem business or first class flights. However, as I have just talked about in my last post, redeeming higher class of tickets has more "value", but that really isn't something that you ought to be going for unless you really enjoy luxury air travel.

Personally, I would strongly recommend the UOB One card. The card has 3.33% rebates if you hit $500 or $1000 per month, continued for a quarter. This then gets bumped up to a whopping 5% rebate if you hit $2000 per month, continued for a quarter.


Let's do an example where your rental is $2000 a month (for whatever reason):

Default Bank Transfer Option
Month 1: -$2000
Month 2: -$2000
Month 3: -$2000
Total: -$6000

CardUp + UOB One Combo Option
Month 1: -$2052 ($52 processing fee)
Month 2: -$2052
Month 3: -$2052
UOB Rebate: +$300
Total: -$5856

Savings: $144, or 2.4%

That's free savings of $144 for not doing much, which works out to a cool $576 in savings for an entire year. On top of the savings, you also rack up spending on your card, which makes getting the annual fee waiver a piece of cake.


CardUp currently has a very narrow range of transactions that they can do. Personally, if they could charge income tax through this, I bet they would end up being a mainstream service. Until, of course, banks get all the wiser and decide to cockblock such transactions.

I feel that CardUp has the best value proposition for renters that either enjoy racking up miles or have a UOB One card. If that is you, what do you think about using such a service?

I for one would be happy if I could get all current GIRO arrangements charged to my credit cards, but I don't see why that would happen anytime soon.


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  2. Under "CardUp + UOB One Combo Option", should be $52 processing fee instead of $522. Interesting app, would be particularly for foreigners whho rent HDBs with their fellow housemates :)

    1. Thanks for pointing out the mistake!

      If you are the housemate that collects the rent from everyone else and pays the landlord, can be quite huat since your actual outlay would be much less!

      ie. 3 people with $700 share per month
      consolidating and paying with UOB and CardUp will mean that your share per quarter from $2100 drops to $1963.8 for a nice 6.5% "savings" in your rental

  3. A good suggestion to use uob one.
    I guess this is one of the best cashback card for this.

    It's hard to hit zhun zhun 2000 every month though and that's the best case scenario

    1. It's hard to hit 2000 every month, but even if you are short a bit, I think it would be easy to use the card for your general expenses to try and charge the difference to make the 2000.

      For those with much lower rentals (maybe just a room rental), it's a good recurring fixed expense to qualify for the UOB One account bonus interest ($500 spending).

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