Department store cards specifically offered to business owners are available from many retailers. In large part, whether a business account is possible depends on the type of goods sold by the department store.
If you own an automotive repair shop, a credit card from a department store specializing in women’s clothing will not add much credibility to the credit file for your business.
If you are in the entertainment industry, it makes sense to apply for a credit card from a high end fashion department store as many of your purchases may be tax write offs due to your profession and using a charge account helps track expenses.
To establish department store cards for business you must have your business set up correctly. It may be a sole proprietorship but it is more likely you will be building credit for an LLC or a registered corporation.
Own Backing To New Accounts
Business credit accounts are critical to cash flow management. For a new business, it is common for the owner of the business to provide his own backing to new accounts that makes him liable for payment should the new business now survive financially.
If you are opening a new restaurant you will be asked to personally back the first credit accounts you receive.
Eateries have an extremely high failure rate and lenders will take a chance only on those with a proven business and profitable operation.
This adds to the difficulty of new restaurant owners as this is a business that can easily have cash flow problems and often relies on credit to buy supplies for upcoming menu items and keep coolers stocked.
A myth inexperienced business owners often believe is that it’s easier to get department store credit cards in a company name than in a personal name.
The thinking seems to be that a company carries a weight of importance that can overcome lack of credit or bad credit. Often, the opposite is true.
A company’s worth when it is new is limited to the equipment it has bought and paid for. Until a business has built a clientele and is showing a reliable profit margin the only way value can be measured is in equipment and and the financial resources that provide backing for the business.
Department business accounts are commonly obtained from those stores that provide the equipment your business uses.
A construction company will almost always have department business cards with Lowe’s and Home Depot.
This allows them to send workers for supplies and easily track expenditures for various projects they are working on.
Businesses with an office environment often open department accounts with suppliers like Office Depot and Staples.
Interior design firms maintain department business cards with furniture stores and retailers that sell home accessories.
Although not officially department store cards for business, major oil companies issue the same type of labeled credit cards to business owners who buy the oil company’s brand of fuel.
Many small businesses have salesmen who are out in the field and need to charge gas and oil purchases while they are on the road.
A common denominator for department store cards is the issuing of multiple cards for one account. Thus credit cards can be provided to trusted employees responsible for making purchases of equipment or office supplies as needed.
Department store cards for business are available but usually only when the products sold by the retail chain are a good fit for what the business buys on a regular basis.
Qualification standards are a little bit easier when you apply for department store cards just as they are for individual accounts. However, spending limits will also be lower than for traditional business credit cards.
If your business is new and has not yet established a credit rating in the business name, you will be required to guarantee the new credit card account with your personal credit rating.
I also recommend you to read our guide on low interest cards if you have some free time over.