About 88% of small businesses depend on the personal credit score of the owner to get small business credit.
That leaves the business owner exposed if something happens to the business. They could lose personal property, such as homes or vehicles.
You don’t want to depend on your personal credit to maintain your business finances. You need to establish a small business credit score for your business.
That opens the door to let your business grow without jeopardizing your personal finances. Keep reading to learn how to build and maintain a credit score for your small business.
1. Establish Your Business
The first thing that you need to do is establish a business presence. You can do that if you work from home or have a retail establishment.
The first thing you need is to register your business with your state. You’ll also need an EIN for your business. You can get this from the IRS by filling out an online form.
Next, you should fill out online directory listings to show that you have an active business. Be sure to open up a business account for your business.
Start applying for small business credit cards for business credit building. Start with one or two cards.
2. Utilize Credit Wisely
Once you have business credit, you need to be careful about using it. Your credit utilization rate has a major impact on your credit score.
The more credit you use compared to what you have available, the lower your credit score. You want to keep your credit utilization rate between 20%-30% to show that you’re responsible with business credit.
3. Keep Business and Personal Finances Separate
You don’t want to continue to mix personal and business finances. You have to keep completely separate accounts for your business.
Be sure that all related business expenses are from your business account. It’s much easier to track and it helps you establish business credit.
4. Be Aware of UCC Filings
UCC filings are like liens against your business property. It’s common for lenders to secure business collateral by filing a UCC to protect their interests.
Should something happen to your business, the UCC filer has a claim on your business assets. That can impact your ability to get more credit in the future.
You may be able to file a UCC termination in some circumstances, which will remove the liens and open up credit opportunities.
5. Monitor Your Small Business Credit Score
Finally, you want to make sure that you continue to monitor your small business credit score. Fraud is on the rise, and you don’t want hits on your credit report.
The sooner you can catch them, the easier it is to fix them. You should check your credit score every few months.
Turn Small Business Credit Into a Stronger Business
Your small business credit score is just as important as your personal credit score. You can use your business credit to get loans, purchase equipment, and scale your business.
It’s important to establish your business presence, use your credit wisely, and manage your credit utilization rate.
Check out more posts in the Business section of this site.