The struggle of personal vs. business credit cards is the #1 thing slowing real estate investors down.
Especially in the beginning, it’s tempting to use personal credit cards to kickstart your investing adventures.
However, the use of personal credit cards on investment projects can ultimately cause significant harm to your dreams of building wealth.
The Risk of Personal Credit Cards
Using personal credit cards for the type of large-scale spending necessary in real estate investing drives up usage.
Your credit score is calculated based on two factors: funds available and usage. High usage tanks your credit score fast. A low score can significantly damage terms of loans and your overall ability to grow your investment business.
A Better Alternative: Business Credit Cards
In order to protect your credit score, consider switching your investment spending to a business credit card.
This separates your investment usage from that personal credit score.
Additionally, since these cards don’t penalize high usage, you can run up the balance as long as you pay it off on time. In fact, consistently high usage and good payment history can even result in the bank raising your spending limits on that business card.
Getting a business credit card is easy, and with this simple change, your personal credit score is protected. If you have a good score, lenders can confidently offer better rates and terms which will save you a lot of money in the long run.
Requirements for Business Credit Cards
Business credit cards are one of the best ways to make real estate investing easier and more profitable. But what do you need before you start looking for a business credit card?
1. A Business
Typically, you need to have an operating business for at least a year (though there are exceptions) before applying for a business card.
This isn’t quite as tricky as it may sound. You need a business account, website, billing information, etc. Essentially, you need proof that you are, in fact, operating an investment business.
2. A Good Personal Credit Score
Even though you’re applying for a card that won’t report on your personal credit score, approval for the business card is based on your personal credit score.
If you need to raise your personal credit score before applying for a business card, we can help you with that! Usage loans essentially transfer some of that credit card spending into a separate loan that won’t tank your credit score.
Both we and our sister company Hard Money Mike offer usage loans.
3. 1–2 Personal Credit Cards
Obviously, you will need to use your personal credit cards for your investment needs in the beginning. However, if you’ve been using those well, then banks are more likely to approve a business credit card.
All in all, if you have a business, a good credit score, and a couple of credit cards already, it’s fairly easy to start the process of switching to business cards.
What to Look for in a Business Credit Card
Here’s the good news: shopping for a business credit card isn’t all that different from looking for a personal one!
- Look for 0% interest and benefits the same as you would on a personal card.
- Make sure you know whether or not that card will report. To protect your credit score, you’ll want to find one that doesn’t.
- Remember: You still need to pay your bills on time. Many business cards will start reporting if you have late or missed payments.
Tools to Help You Find the Right Card
We want to make it easy for you to succeed as a real estate investor—no strings attached. The more you know and the more resources you have, the better equipped you are to find the right deals for you.
We’ve already done some of the work for you:
Here at the Cashflow Company, we’ve partnered with Nav to help you find the right business card for you. By inputting a few pieces of information, we’ll let you know what cards match your needs (and won’t report on your personal credit score).
You can use our free credit checklist download to check the health of your credit score. What can you do to improve that score? Does it need some CPR? What are your options?
Explore our other tools to optimize your investment strategy. We have various calculators, questionnaires, optimizers, and analyzers to walk you through the various steps of the game.
Credit scores are a very important piece of leverage. We want you to feel equipped and confident that you’re protecting that credit score in a smart way.
If you want to discuss your credit score, a usage loan, or business credit cards, contact us at Info@TheCashFlowCompany.com. We’re always happy to help!