- Establishing and maintaining a good business credit history is essential for entrepreneurs to access competitive financing.
- Building credit can be challenging, but businesses can obtain a business credit card or loan from a lender that reports to the three major business credit bureaus and pay bills on time.
- Creating and following a budget, reducing costs, leveraging technology, and paying off debt are helpful strategies to maintain healthy cash flow.
- Investing capital equipment, software, and advertising campaigns instead of unnecessary spending will help manage debt levels and create a solid financial foundation for success.
Building credit is essential for business owners, providing them with a safety net and financial freedom. Securing loans or lines of credit from banks or other lenders is more complex and expensive without a good credit score. Good credit can also help business owners qualify for lower interest rates on financing.
According to the US Small Business Administration, having good credit can be the difference between success and failure for small businesses. Nearly three-quarters (72%) of small businesses depend on external financing from sources such as banks, while only one-third (38%) of approved loan applications make it through the approval process. Forbes also reports that 84% of small businesses said their inability to get a loan in 2016, reinforcing that good credit is critical to successful financial management and growth potential.
However, building credit for businesses can be challenging. Credit bureaus are typically reluctant to report business accounts as they cannot access the same information sources for individual consumer accounts.
Fortunately, there are ways for business owners to build up their credit scores. Here are a few strategies to consider:
Establish Business Credit History
Establishing a solid business credit history is vital for entrepreneurs to obtain financing and take advantage of more competitive loan rates. Business credit scores are based on payment history, the length of a business’s credit history, the types of credit used, and other financial information related to the company.
Business owners can build their credit by obtaining a business credit card or loan from a financial institution that reports to one or more of the three major business credit reporting bureaus: Experian, Equifax, and Dun & Bradstreet. Paying bills on time is essential, and always keeping balances low to achieve a good score. Renting office space or purchasing vendor supplies may help build a positive payment history.
Partnering with National Credit Center can also help business owners build credit. This company works with businesses to create and manage customized business credit plans designed to improve their credit score over time and increase their access to financing.
Maintain Healthy Cash Flow
A healthy cash flow is essential for any business and can be especially beneficial for those looking to improve their credit scores. A steady cash flow means companies can make debt payments on time and in full, which will help improve their business credit scores. Maintaining a healthy cash flow can help companies to secure funding more quickly and easily from banks or other lenders, as lenders often look at a business’s cash flow when evaluating loan applications.
Maintaining a healthy cash flow is not always easy, but businesses can take some simple steps to ensure they have enough money to pay their bills. Here are some tips to consider:
Create A Budget
Creating and following a budget is the best way to manage spending and ensure all bills are paid on time. Establishing a budget also helps businesses determine how much money they must set aside monthly for debt payments. It’s essential to account for expected and unexpected expenses in the budget so you’re always prepared with the necessary funds.
Reducing costs can free up funds for debt repayment or finance expansion plans. Reducing costs could mean renegotiating contracts with vendors or suppliers, taking advantage of tax credits or deductions, consolidating debts into one loan with lower interest rates, or cutting back on energy use.
Consider Invoice Financing
Invoice financing is an option for businesses waiting for customers to pay outstanding invoices. With invoice financing, companies sell their invoices at discounted rates to third-party financiers to immediately get the money they need. This improves cash flow while helping build positive relationships with customers by ensuring timely payment of invoices.
Technology has made managing finances more accessible than ever before. Numerous software programs allow businesses to track income and expenses in real-time, analyze cash flows over different periods, set alerts when bills are due, identify potential cost savings opportunities, and more – all without leaving your desk! Leveraging technology can save valuable time while also helping maintain financial stability.
Pay Up Business Debt
Business debt can have a significant impact on business credit scores. Unpaid or late payments will lead to negative marks on credit reports, which can result in higher interest rates for future loans or lines of credit. Also, lenders may hesitate to approve loan applications from businesses with poor credit histories. To prevent this from happening, business owners need to prioritize paying off their business debt promptly.
One way to ensure that debts are paid on time is to create a payment plan and stick to it. Businesses should spend as much of the balance each month as possible while leaving enough money available for regular operations. It is also essential to prioritize payments based on the interest rate associated with each personal debt – paying off high-interest loans first can save money in the long run.
In addition, businesses should strive to keep their debt levels low by using only what they need and avoiding unnecessary borrowing. This means limiting spending on purchases and services that are not essential for operations and focusing instead on crucial investments such as capital equipment, software, or advertising campaigns. By keeping debt levels low, businesses can reduce their financial burden and maintain a healthy cash flow.
Business owners must actively manage their credit to be eligible for loans and other financing options. With some dedication and planning, they can establish positive business credit histories that will help them secure financing. From creating budgets to taking advantage of invoice financing, businesses can use various strategies to maintain healthy cash flow and ultimately build up their credit score. By following these steps, business owners can create a solid financial foundation and give themselves the best chance at success in today’s competitive market.