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The 5 best home improvement credit cards: Rewards for fixer-uppers

What is the best home improvement credit card? The Lowe's Advantage Card is our top choice. Serious home remodelers deserve significant credit card rewards.
Written by Sally Herigstad, Contributing writer
Lowe's Advantage Card | Best home improvement credit card overall (and for Lowe's shoppers)
Lowe's Advantage Card
Lowe's Advantage Card
Best home improvement credit card overall (and for Lowe's shoppers)
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Citi® Double Cash Card | Best no-fee, all-purpose card
Citi® Double Cash Card
Citi® Double Cash Card
Best no-fee, all-purpose card
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Discover it® Cash Back | Best for high cash back rewards in specific categories
Discover it® Cash Back
Discover it® Cash Back
Best for high cash back rewards in specific categories
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Serious home remodelers spend money on everything from tools and paint to cabinets and flooring. So if you're thinking about tackling some renovations, you should get rewarded for the purchases you make. We rounded up five of the best credit cards for home improvement projects, and you can check them out below.

card highlights
intro bonusN/A
APRSee Terms
recommended creditN/A
reward rates N/A
annual feeNo Annual Fee
intro purchase APRN/A

The Lowe's Advantage Card offers the best rewards out of the cards we selected. One of the best benefits is that you'll receive the rewards now in the form of a discount, instead of waiting months or longer for them. And if you're a do-it-yourselfer, you're probably wandering the aisles of home improvement stores regularly anyway. You might as well carry a card that pays you back for being a loyal customer.

This card currently offers an additional discount on one purchase as a sign-up bonus, and it has no annual fee. However, the Lowes Advantage Card has a moderately high APR if you carry a balance. But if you're doing major projects, you may qualify for special financing at a lower rate.

Pros

  • Very competitive rewards on Lowes purchases, given as a purchase discount
  • Additional discount on first qualifying purchase
  • No annual fee

Cons

  • Discount only at Lowes
  • Average to high interest rates on balances
Lowe's Advantage Card

Lowe's Advantage Card

IKEA Visa Card

Best card for IKEA shoppers

If you're more likely to spend your home improvement dollars at IKEA, you can't go wrong by getting its no-annual-fee credit card. IKEA has expanded its home improvement offerings over the years, even offering kitchen and bathroom cabinet remodeling advice at its stores and installation at shoppers' homes. With the IKEA Visa Card, you get a competitive rewards program on store purchases, as well as rewards for dining, groceries, and utilities and minimum rewards on everything else.

If you carry a balance on your IKEA card, the APR is moderate compared to other home improvement cards. The only catch is that you must redeem your rewards at IKEA.

Pros

  • Excellent rewards for in-store purchases
  • No annual fee
  • Lower APR if you carry a balance than on some cards
  • Use your card wherever Visa is accepted

Cons

  • Redeem rewards at IKEA store
  • Lower rewards on purchases other than at IKEA and in select categories
card highlights
intro bonusEarn $200 cash back after you spend $1,500 on purchases in the first 6 months of account opening. This bonus offer will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back.
APR19.24% - 29.24% (Variable)
recommended creditExcellent, Good, Fair
reward rates
  • Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases. To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time.
  • Plus, for a limited time, earn 5% total cash back on hotel, car rentals and attractions booked on the Citi Travel℠ portal through 12/31/24.
annual fee$0
intro purchase APRN/A

If you need motivation to pay off your card balances, the Citi Double Cash Card may be for you. It gives you a cashback reward when you make a purchase using your card, and then an additional reward when you pay it off.

You may qualify for this card if your credit score isn't quite high enough for some of the other cards; it's generally available to customers with good and better credit scores. The Citi Double Cash Card also offers a generous introductory APR balance transfer offer, although balance transfer fees apply.

Pros

  • Good rewards rates with on-time card payments
  • Introductory  APR on balance transfers
  • Moderate APR if you carry a balance
  • No annual fee

Cons

  • Comparatively low rewards rate at time of purchase
Citi® Double Cash Card

Citi® Double Cash Card

card highlights
intro bonusIntro Offer: Unlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.
APR17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR
recommended creditGood/Excellent
reward rates
  • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
annual fee$0
intro purchase APR0% for 15 months

You'll have to play the game just right to get the high rewards rate on the Discover it Cash Back Card. The top rate applies only to certain categories, and those categories are different each quarter. They may include purchases at places as varied as Amazon or gas stations. Your total rewards amount for each period is limited. However, if you can keep an eye on the current categories and time your purchases accordingly, you can earn some great rewards.

At the end of your first year, Discover automatically matches your rewards earned so far, with no minimum spending or maximum rewards. The no-fee Discover It Cash Back Card also offers a generous introductory period for both purchases and balance transfers (balance transfer fees apply).

Pros

  • Excellent cash back rewards on purchases in featured categories each quarter
  • No annual fee
  • Intro rate on balance transfers and purchases

Cons

  • Attention required to maximize your rewards for each quarter
  • Some cardholders may be tempted to spend more while certain categories offer high rewards
  • Lower rewards on categories not featured in current quarter
Discover it® Cash Back

Discover it® Cash Back

What is the best home improvement credit card?

The Lowe's Advantage Card offers the best rewards out of all the cards we selected. 

What is the right home improvements rewards credit card for you?

We chose five credit cards with above average rewards rates on home improvement and related purchases. The best card for you depends on your buying habits, how much you will spend, and how quickly you will pay off the balance. These cards all have no annual fee. 

Cards may have average or higher interest rates (APRs). If you carry a balance, you may be better off looking for a low APR card or special financing deal. High interest rates will cost you far more than you can save with cash rewards cards.

Can I use these home improvement rewards cards at other stores and venues?

All of our credit card choices for home improvement purchases can also be used anywhere else you use major credit cards.

Should I get a good rewards card or store financing?

Some retailers offer great deals on store financing on everything from appliances to carpet. However, you should read the contract carefully. If it offers "90 days same as cash," for example, and you don't actually pay it off before the 90 days end, you may owe a high rate of interest from the date of purchase and going forward. 

You may be better off using a card with an introductory low- or no-interest rate. At least then you only pay interest after the introductory period ends.

Always pay more attention to the interest rate you pay than to rewards rates. Rewards are great, but paying high interest rates will cost you far more than you save.

How hard is it to keep track of a rewards card to get the most benefit?

You can spend as much time maximizing your rewards as you like. It's even possible to have multiple rewards cards for different purposes, allowing you to reach the rewards caps for each one. However, most people with busy lives will want to choose the card that works best with their spending habits, letting it work for them automatically.

Should I open multiple rewards cards to take advantage of the best offers?

There's probably no harm in having a few rewards cards, although your credit score may take a temporary dip when you first apply for them. However, try not to go overboard. Too many cards means more accounts to keep track of and pay each month. It's better to choose a card or cards that work best for you instead of taking advantage of every offer that comes along.

How did we choose these credit cards?

We chose five credit cards with above average rewards rates on purchases related to home improvement and decor. Some cards offer the best rewards at certain stores, while others have good rewards at a wider selection of stores. They all have no annual fee, but interest rates vary by card. 

Are there alternative credit cards worth considering?

Below are a couple other cards you should check out:

  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card: The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card offers outstanding points rewards after you spend a minimum amount in the first three months from account opening. You can spend the points for travel or redeem them for a slightly lesser amount of cash. You cannot be a current or recent Sapphire cardholder for this offer.
  • Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express: If you're making large purchases, the American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card can help you make a plan to pay it off while reducing the fees and interest you pay. It offers a low- or no-interest introductory rate when you split up your large purchase into monthly installments with Plan It by American Express. You'll pay $0 in plan fees for plans set up in the first 12 months from the date of account opening. The card offers its highest rewards on grocery purchases and certain online streaming services. However, if you spend in those categories anyway, the savings can help fund your home remodeling projects.
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