This is similar to, but not the same as, a personal credit score or a personal FICO score. For personal credit scores, scores range from 300 to 850, and most lenders require a minimum score of at least 600 for a personal loan. Building good business credit is hugely important when it comes to building a strong business.
Monitoring your business credit can help you better prepare for business growth opportunities and avoid surprises when you go on loans. In general, it is recommended to check your business credit report and score for at least three months before you get a small business loan or line of credit. That way you can make sure everything is in order and see what improvements you can make. It’s also a good idea to check your business credit report after your loan to check the accuracy and the implications for your business credit score.
In fact, your personal credit score can be one of the most important factors, if your business is new. Building credit can take some time, and it’s best to start early before you need to apply for a loan or credit card. While credit scoring formulas can vary depending on the type of credit score, there are some actions you can take that will generally improve your personal or business credit scores.
Business credit reports must be purchased from credit bureaus and, unlike consumer credit reports, are publicly available to anyone who pays the fee. There is no free annual corporate credit report required by the federal government for businesses. You’ll have to pay to get a copy of your report from each agency, although free information is available on websites like CreditSignal.com (for Dun & Bradstreet) and Nav.com. Your personal credit report is essentially the highlight of your financial habits. All of your loans, mortgage payments, overdue bills, utility payments, etc. come together on your credit report and give lenders an idea of how financially reliable you are. Some business credit scores, including Intelliscore Plus and FICO SBSS scores, consider homeowners’ personal credit to be a factor.
That’s when the range of personal FICO scores affects a business owner’s FICO SBSS score. Register your company legally and apply for a federal employer identification number and a D-U-N-S number®. Buy a business credit card and bank account and make all your business purchases with them. Work with providers who report to business credit reference agencies and pay them early. Staying on top of the information in your business credit reports is crucial to the growth of your business, as a good credit score can mean a better chance of qualifying for a loan or access to good financing terms.
Paying financial obligations on agreed terms is the first and most important step in improving your business credit score. All business accounts, not only loans, but also recurring expenses such driving records as utilities and leases, should be determined in the name of your company. You should also make sure that your business suppliers report your payment history to a business credit bureau.