Tier 2 vendors can help you survive inflation. But how do you get them, and how can they help? First, you have to understand what they are.
What’s Special About Tier 2?
Tier 2 vendors are those vendors that you should qualify for accounts with after you have enough tier 1 vendors reporting. Honestly, these vendors open up a whole new range of purchasing power. Of course, tier 1 vendors are useful. After all, they sell things you can use. However, when it comes to building business credit, their main purpose is to get initial accounts reporting to begin building your business credit score.
Truly, there are more tier 2 vendors than there are tier 1. Yet, they will not approve you for credit without at least some business credit history, or a personal guarantee. By starting with tier 1 vendors, you can often avoid using a personal guarantee in tier 2.
Is a Personal Guarantee Bad?
No, it’s not necessarily bad. Still, it may not be something you want to get into. If you use a personal guarantee to get business credit, and your business cannot pay its obligations, you will be personally liable for the debt.
It’s best, if possible, to limit the use of a personal guarantee. When it comes to large, traditional business loans, you will not have a choice. A personal guarantee will almost always be required. So, when you can get funding without one, go for it.
Now, here are some examples of vendors that fall into tier 2. All vendors require the basics of a fundable foundation for approval. This includes:
- Entity in good standing with Secretary of State
- Business address- matching everywhere
- D-U-N-S number
- Business license- if applicable
- Separate, dedicated business bank account
- Business phone number listed in 411 directory
Some vendors have additional requirements as well.
As you know, Amazon offers online shopping for virtually anything you can imagine. Better yet, they report to Dun & Bradstreet and Equifax.
Qualification requirements are the basic elements of a fundable foundation as listed above.
For Amazon, there is no minimum time in business if you have a strong business credit history. Yet, they will pull business credit reports to make sure there is at least some established business credit history. As a result, you must have a D&B PAYDEX score of 80 or higher and a good Equifax business credit score.
A PG is not required, but it may increase the likelihood of approval if you have a young or small business and not enough business credit history.
Remember, if you work through the Business Credit Builder program, starting with tier 1 vendors, you will likely have the business credit history you need.
With Brex, you have a couple of options. The easiest way to use Brex for both managing finances and building business credit is to open a Brex cash account.
Everyone who opens a Brex cash account gets a corporate card. It works just like a debit card, as it draws from your Brex cash balance daily. However, unlike a debit card, Brex reports these payments to Dun & Bradstreet. By doing so, they help build your business credit score.
Since this card is secured by the balance in your Brex cash account, and limited to that balance, you do not have to worry about underwriting.
Alternatively, they offers a more traditional card for those who qualify. This option is not limited to the balance in your Brex cash account. In contrast, it offers limits that will go up to 20x higher than that of a typical corporate card. Instead of checking your personal credit score, they base approval and credit limits on business financial information. This includes available cash, spending patterns, and more.
If you qualify for this card, your entire balance must be paid monthly.
Obviously, Home Depot provides products and services for home improvement needs. Their Commercial Revolving Charge Card offers your business payment flexibility. Even better, it also provides a boost to your business credit profile by reporting to D&B, Experian, and Equifax.
Qualifications in addition to basic fundable foundation elements listed above for Commercial Account with Pay in Full Terms:
- At least 3 years in the business
- Good Experian business credit score and D&B PAYDEX score of 80 or higher
Now, they do prefer to see a minimum of 2 accounts reporting. However, they will consider the merit of the overall application. Still, if there is not enough business credit history, or if you have been in business for less than 3 years, a Personal Guarantee(PG) is required.
Additional Qualifications for Commercial Revolving Charge Account:
- No minimum time in business
- You must have a good Experian business credit score and D&B PAYDEX score of 80 or higher
- A Personal Guarantee (PG) is required for the revolving charge account
Quill sells a variety of goods. Generally, these include office and cleaning supplies, among other things. As for business credit building, they report to Dun & Bradstreet. At first, they may ask you to do prepaid orders of $100.00. After they approve Net 30, a minimum purchase of $50.00 is necessary to report.
Additional qualification requirements:
- Good D&B PAYDEX score of 80 or higher
- At least 3-5 trade accounts reporting on D&B credit report
- Must be an established business for 6 months
Also, new businesses or businesses with no credit history with D&B may need to prepay purchases for 3 consecutive months until Net 30 is approved.
How to Use Vendor Credit to Prepare for Inflation
Obviously, money doesn’t go as far when inflation takes hold. But, by having vendor credit available to use, you can buy things you need before prices rise, or rise further. To beat inflation, use vendor accounts to buy the things you need regularly while prices are lower, and you’ll be ahead of the game.
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