As an experienced Canadian credit reporting professional and a business man himself, Pat Drummond knows the challenges that small businesses face, and has learned from experience how to avoid common mistakes, which may eat up valuable time and money. Small businesses especially ones that are generally family-owned or those that have been operating for less than 2 years need access to credit. Here are 4 steps you can follow to build your business credit:
1. Establish a Business Credit Report
Every business starts with no credit score, and no credit history. Similar to your personal credit report, a business good credit profile can help your company grow and prosper. As you make connections to your business clients, you can start to build your working relations and credit profile. As the business expands and starts establishing it, approvals for loans will get easier.
2. Leverage Business Relationships
It is important to start building a good business foundation and working relationship with your suppliers. There may be a variety of vendors which your business relies upon to get the job done or to provide products and having a great working relationship can help to improve your business credit report. If you regularly shop at Home Depot for example, you can open up a contractor account and start to build your business credit in that way. Many companies will offer perks and special discounts for regular customers. This includes private businesses and contractors.
3. Justify the Loan
Having a sound business plan will go a long way into helping secure the credit and loans that your growing business needs. When requesting credit, lenders such as banks will want to know what you plan to do with the money. A solid plan will not only help you success on your plan, but will also calm the nerves of lenders and any investor who may want to support the business financially.
4. Separate Business from Personal Credit
This is a common mistake among small business owners. It is easy to fall into this situation because you want your business to succeed. However, keep in my that separating your personal finances and your business finances is a must. Your credit report will be in a much healthier position and you will reduce the risk of your business impacting your personal credit score. If the business were to ever close or go bankrupt the consequences can be significant and even worse when you are held personally liable for business debts.