21 Best Credit Cards for New Homeowners in 2018

21 Best Credit Cards for New Homeowners in 2018

credit card advice

Brittney Mayer
By: Brittney Mayer
Posted: July 12, 2018
Opinions expressed here are ours alone, and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by any issuer. Site may be compensated through the issuer affiliate programs.

Although the purchase price of your new home was likely in the six figures, handing over that check at closing is often only the start of the spending. You still need to pay for the move, set up utilities, fix that leaky faucet, buy furniture — and the list goes on.

In other words, while finding savings where you can is always a good idea, it can be downright vital for many new homeowners whose budgets are already strapped. That’s where using the right credit cards can make a big difference, helping you save where it counts.

Of course, the options are hardly limited to our top picks. Between interest-rate deals, signup bonuses, and purchase rewards, you can find myriad ways to save as you turn your new house into a home.

Overall | 0% APR | Signup Bonus | Home Improvement | Furniture | Utilities | Housewares

Best Overall Cards for New Homeowners

The best overall credit card for a new homeowner isn’t actually just one card. Each cardholder has specific needs and spending habits, so the best card for one new homeowner may be less worthwhile to another.

With that in mind, each of our top overall cards offers great value for a different type of new homeowner. At the same time, they also all provide long-term value that will last well beyond the first few months in your new home.

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® named a 'Best Travel Credit Card' by MONEY® Magazine, 2016-2017
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.74% - 24.74% Variable
$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95
Excellent Credit

With the top overall card, you can earn a very valuable signup bonus with just a few major purchases for your new home, as well as earning unlimited Ultimate Rewards® points while you’re at it. Plus, you’ll receive double points on dining purchases, including take-out and delivery, which can come in handy for easy meals during the move.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 14.74%-24.74% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 14.74%-24.74% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
14.74% - 24.74% (Variable)
$0
Excellent, Good

This card not only offers unlimited 1.5% cash back rewards, regardless of purchase category, but it also comes with a long introductory 0% APR offer that can give you the breathing room to pay for things like movers and appliances at your own pace.

3. Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

The Citi ThankYou® Premier Card can help you save on moving costs with 3X points for travel purchases, including gas and airfare. You’ll also earn bonus rewards on entertainment purchases to cut the cost of streaming to your new home.

Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

  • Earn 3X points per $1 spent on eligible travel purchases, including gas stations
  • Earn 2X points per $1 spent on dining and entertainment purchases
  • Pay no annual fee the first year, then $95

Additionally, the card offers bonus points for dining purchases, which can be a huge help when your kitchen is in boxes and no one has the energy to whip up dinner after the big move.

Best 0% APR Cards for Large New Purchases

While few things can compare to the price tag of your new home, much of what goes into that home will have a hefty price tag of its own. Simply buying a new refrigerator can run four figures, and a full living room set can easily set you back thousands of dollars.

Given the high cost of outfitting your new home, adding interest charges onto the pile can end up in disaster. Credit cards with introductory 0% APR offers can help you avoid the danger of skyrocketing balances by giving you 12 months or more of interest-free purchasing.

Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card Review

at Wells Fargo'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.6

OVERALL RATING

4.6/5.0
  • 0% Intro APR for 18 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a 16.90%-26.74% variable APR; balance transfer fees apply
  • Get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with your Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card
  • Free access to your FICO® Credit Score with Wells Fargo Online®
  • Zero Liability protection for promptly reported unauthorized transactions
  • Convenient tools to help create a budget and manage your spending with My Money Map
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 18 months
0% for 18 months
16.90%-26.74% (Variable)
$0
Excellent/Good

Although this card doesn’t offer any purchase rewards, it does come with a whopping 18 months of 0% APR on new purchases, which can mean saving hundreds in interest fees over the course of the offer. And with no annual fee, you won’t be throwing money away just to carry the card.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.74-25.49%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months
16.74% - 25.49% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

Although its introductory APR offer isn’t the longest on the market, this card has no annual fee and offers unlimited 1.5% cash back rewards on every purchase, with no spending caps or categories to track.

Discover it® Cash Back Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com, or wholesale clubs up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate.
  • Earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back earned at the end of your first year, automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Receive FREE Social Security number alerts—Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 14 months
0% for 14 months
13.74% - 24.74% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

This card pairs a long introductory 0% APR offer with the ability to earn up to 5% cash back on eligible category purchases. Categories change each quarter, with popular options like gas, restaurants, and Amazon.com frequently offered. Cash back is capped at $1,500 in category purchases each activated quarter.

Best Cards for Earning Big Signup Bonuses

Although some people prefer to pay for their large purchases a little at a time, if you have the means to pay off your major expenses as you make them, then an intro-APR card isn’t that useful. A nice big signup bonus, on the other hand, can be hugely valuable.

Many of the best signup bonuses come from top-tier travel rewards cards, but some cash back options are also available. Make sure you note the minimum spending requirement and time limit to ensure you meet the qualifications, and pay off your purchases right away to avoid being charged interest fees.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn 50K bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Named a ‘Best Travel Credit Card for 2017’ by MONEY® Magazine
  • 3X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases. Plus, no foreign transaction fees
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.74% - 24.74% Variable
$450
Excellent Credit

Although this card has a high spending requirement, a new set of appliances or a room of furniture could potentially meet the minimum (and then some) with a single purchase. To get the most out of your bonus, redeem for travel through the Chase portal using the card’s redemption bonus, or transfer to a hotel or airline partner for even more value.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® named a 'Best Travel Credit Card' by MONEY® Magazine, 2016-2017
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.74% - 24.74% Variable
$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95
Excellent Credit

While the signup bonus for this card is the same as its big sibling above, you won’t get as much value through the Chase portal thanks to a lower redemption bonus. That said, you can transfer your points at the same rate with either card, unlocking huge value potential.

Discover it® Cash Back Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com, or wholesale clubs up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate.
  • Earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back earned at the end of your first year, automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Receive FREE Social Security number alerts—Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 14 months
0% for 14 months
13.74% - 24.74% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

This card doesn’t have a traditional signup bonus; instead, Discover will match all the cash back you earn with your card for the first year; with unlimited 1% cash back on everything and the ability to earn up to 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in category purchases each activated quarter, you could end up with a massive bonus after your anniversary.

Best Cards for (the Inevitable) Home Improvement Projects

Unless you’re buying a brand new home — and sometimes even then — the odds are high that you’ll need to make a few repairs or improvements. Depending on the scope of the job, this could mean thousands of dollars worth of construction costs.

Even if you go the DIY route, you’ll still likely spend a small fortune at the local hardware store. Either way, a credit card that can help you both earn rewards on your purchases and save on interest fees is a clear winner.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.74-25.49%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months
16.74% - 25.49% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

Although this card doesn’t offer bonus rewards for hardware stores, it does offer more flexibility; you’ll earn the same 1.5% cash back with this card no matter where you purchase your home improvement supplies. Plus, cardholders can enjoy more than a year of 0% APR and pay no annual fee.

11. Huntington Voice Credit Card®

The Huntington Voice Credit Card® gives the power to choose your own bonus rewards category from 10 different options. Simply choose home improvement stores as your quarterly bonus category to earn 3X points per dollar at your favorite hardware store.

Voice Credit Card® from Huntington

  • Select your own rewards by choosing your 3X points bonus category each quarter
  • Earn 1X point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Pay no annual fee

This card isn’t a one-trick pony, either. You can change your bonus category each quarter to suit your changing needs. For example, when you’re done with the repairs and ready to upgrade your home with a new entertainment system, simply change your bonus category to electronics stores and start earning.

12. BBVA Compass ClearPoints Credit Card

The BBVA Compass ClearPoints Credit Card gives cardholders the ability to choose their own 3X and 2X rewards categories (one each). While available categories can change from year to year, hardware stores are a frequent option.

BBVA Compass ClearPoints Credit Card

  • Select your own rewards by choosing your 3X and 2X points bonus rewards categories each quarter
  • Receive 0% Intro APR for the first 13 months
  • Pay no annual fee

The main drawback to the card is its limited availability; you’ll need to head into your local BBVA to apply, and the card is only available in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas.

Best Cards for Saving on Roomfuls of Furniture

Furniture is expensive. Even a cheap sofa can run you a few hundred bucks, and filling an entire house with new furniture can be a four- to five-figure investment. If you’ll need time to pay off your new bedroom set, then a credit card with an intro-APR offer is your best bet.

However, if you have the money at hand and want to make the most of your purchase, then a rewards credit card is the way to go. While few credit cards offer bonus rewards specifically for furniture store purchases, you can find a number that will reward you for department store purchases.

13. U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

The U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card is one of the only cards that offers bonus rewards specifically for furniture purchases, allowing users to choose furniture stores as one of their 5% cash back bonus categories.

U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

  • Earn 5% cash back in two categories of your choosing, plus 2% cash back in an additional category you select
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Pay no annual fee

To really make the most of your rewards with this card as a new homeowner, you can choose electronics stores or home utilities as your second 5% cash back category and gas stations or restaurants as your 2% cash back category.

14. Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

While the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is most popular for its 6% cash back at grocery stores, the 3% cash back rewards you earn for department store purchases can also save you a ton on furniture and appliances from your local department store.

American Express Blue Cash Preferred

  • Earn 6% cash back at US supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases
  • Earn 3% cash back at US gas stations and US department stores
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases

While the card has a $95 annual fee, it doesn’t take much to earn the rewards to cover it. Spending just $3,200 in gas and department store purchases in your first year of homeownership will cover the annual fee; alternatively, just $31 a week in groceries will also see you break even on the fee.

15. Voice Credit Card® from Huntington

The Voice Credit Card® from Huntington is one of the most flexible cards on the market, allowing cardholders to choose their own categories. Simply select department stores as your bonus category for the quarter to earn 3X points per dollar on furniture and appliance purchases.

Voice Credit Card® from Huntington

  • Select your own rewards by choosing your 3X points bonus category each quarter
  • Earn 1X point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Pay no annual fee

When you’ve filled every room and don’t need department store rewards anymore, be sure to change up your rewards category to maintain the card’s value. Earn 3X rewards on categories like gas, groceries, or electronics for year-round savings.

Best Cards for Paying Your New Utility Bills

One thing that can come as a big shock to new homeowners is the cost of utilities for their new house, particularly those homeowners who are more used to apartment living or who upgrade their home size. The fact is, doubling your square footage can more than double your utility bills.

While some utility companies are still in the stone age when it comes to accepting credit cards, most major providers will accept card payments — for a fee. So, the key is to find a card that earns at least as much in cash back or points as the fee (but preferably much more).

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.74-25.49%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months
16.74% - 25.49% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

While this card only typically offers bonus rewards on utilities one quarter a year, you’ll earn 5% cash back on your cable, internet, and cellphone bills when you activate your category bonus for that quarter. Other quarter categories can also be quite lucrative, giving this card year-round value for many consumers.

17. Voice Credit Card® from Huntington

The Voice Credit Card® from Huntington stands out as a card with many categories you don’t see often, and utilities are yet another example. Simply choose utilities and office supplies as your bonus category to earn 3X points per dollar on your bills.

Voice Credit Card® from Huntington

  • Select your own rewards by choosing your 3X points bonus category each quarter
  • Earn 1X point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Pay no annual fee

Your bonus category is selected each quarter and you can choose the same category or pick a new category if you have other big expenses coming up. Bonus rewards can be earned on up to $2,000 in qualifying category purchases each quarter.

18. U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

The U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card allows you to select two 5% cash back categories, giving you the option to earn 5% cash back on both home utilities and your cellphone bill (or another category entirely).

U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

  • Earn 5% cash back in two categories of your choosing, plus 2% cash back in an additional category you select
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Pay no annual fee

Additional 5% cash back category options include a number of popular everyday expenses, like gym/fitness centers and ground transportation, as well as entertainment-based purchases like electronics stores and movie theaters.

Best Cards for Pots, Pillows & Other Important Housewares

Once you’ve finished the repairs, purchased furniture, and moved your stuff in, you may think the purchasing is done — think again. You can’t forget all the little things that make a house truly livable, things like kitchen utensils, pillowcases, and light bulbs, just to name a few.

Given that many folks spread the housewares buying around a variety of retailers, it can be difficult to find one card that will reward you for everything. Rewards cards with rotating categories or store cards with big rewards may be the best way to maximize your housewares rewards.

Discover it® Cash Back Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com, or wholesale clubs up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate.
  • Earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back earned at the end of your first year, automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Receive FREE Social Security number alerts—Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 14 months
0% for 14 months
13.74% - 24.74% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

You can earn great rewards on housewares purchases from a number of locations with this card, as it not only typically offers one quarter of 5% cash back at Amazon.com, but you’ll also generally see at least one quarter of 5% cash back at wholesale/discount clubs, as well. Cash back is limited to $1,500 in category purchases each activated quarter.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.74-25.49%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months
16.74% - 25.49% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

Like its Discover counterpart, this card’s rotating cash back categories change every quarter, so you may need to time your housewares purchases wisely. However, each quarter offers valuable bonuses in popular categories that include grocery stores, drug stores, and Target, to help you stock up every room in the house.

21. Amazon Rewards Visa Signature® Card

The Amazon Rewards Visa Signature® Card can be surprisingly valuable for new homeowners who happen to be Prime members. The 5% cash back on Amazon.com purchases can be handy for everything from cleaning supplies to housewares, most with that ever-popular Prime shipping.

Amazon Rewards Visa Signature® Card

  • Earn 3% back on Amazon.com and Whole Foods purchases; Prime Members earn 5% back
  • Earn 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores
  • Pay no annual card fee, Prime fee may apply

You can even save while you stock up your new fridge with 5% cash back on Whole Foods purchases when you use your card. And don’t forget to scan your Prime member discount code for even more savings.

Make the Most of Your New Investment

Buying a new home is a big investment — and we’re not just talking about the cost of real estate. Everything that goes into your new home is also part of the investment, from the time and money spent on repairs and upgrades to the hundreds of dollars in furniture gracing each room.

To make the most of that investment, it’s important to use the right payment method for every purchase. With smart credit card use, for example, you can save at every step, earning cash back and points that you can invest in additional improvements — or a well-earned vacation.