Tier 3: Business Credit Cards
⏳ Video Length — 00:12:47
Need a business credit card for ultimate flexibility? Most small business owners would agree that having a major business credit card like American Express, Chase, Citi, etc. is the ultimate goal. These cards come loaded with rewards, perks, cash advance benefits, and more.
The process of applying for a business credit card is fairly simple. You’ll need to research cards, pick the one you want, gather relevant information about your business, complete an application and await the issuer’s decision.
While the actual application is quick and easy, preparing beforehand ensures that you choose the right card for your business and get approved.
What do you need to apply for a business credit card?
When you apply for a business credit card, you’ll need to supply all of the information that you’d provide to apply for a personal card. Basic contact information like your name, mailing address, phone number and email will all be part of the application. You’ll also need to provide several items specific to your business, including:
- Business’s name
- Business’s address
- Years in business
- Annual revenue
- Estimated monthly expenses using the card
In addition, you’ll need to provide your tax identification number (TIN) or EIN. You’ll also need to state your position at the company, as well as Social Security numbers for any other business partners who own over a certain percentage of the business (usually 20% or more).
Depending on the credit card company, a card application may also ask what industry the business is in, the nature of business (whether it’s for profit, for example) and the number of employees or additional cardholders.
Restrictions on who qualifies usually vary by individual card issuers, but these are some you might encounter:
Organization type: Some card issuers will not issue business credit cards to nonprofits or unincorporated businesses, like sole proprietorships.
Industry: Some institutions will not extend credit to businesses operating in certain industries, such as multilevel marketers and cannabis- or firearm-related businesses.
Applicant qualifications: Every issuer has its own minimum qualifying criteria for card applicants, including income, time in business and credit score.
Check Your Personal Credit
If you have been in business for three or more years, meet income requirements, and have 12+ payment experiences reporting on your business credit reports, you may qualify for a business credit card using your business credit score. More often than not, though, you’ll be applying with your own Social Security number, and issuers will check your personal credit score.
In either case, it’s usually a good idea to check these scores on your own before you apply to make sure they’re in good shape. The higher your scores, the better. If your personal credit score isn’t at least 680-720, you may want to consider holding off on applying altogether. That will give you time to improve your credit score by doing things like paying down debt, bringing accounts current or repairing any damage.
One of the greatest benefits of building business credit is the ability to leverage a credit partner. This is someone who is a partner in your business, and whose personal credit you can use to get the business approved. This option gives business owners the flexibility to leverage the strengths of others to get the business the money it needs and help it grow.
- If you’re a startup, you may only qualify for business credit cards using your personal credit — work towards 720.
- If your personal credit is less than 700, consider using a credit partner or repairing your credit.
- Some industries may be restricted by certain banks.
- If you have 12+ business credit accounts, you may qualify with no PG – leave ssn blank on the application.
- Let the professionals handle it. Fill out the prequalification form