A small business credit card has a number of advantages. In addition to being able to help with start up costs and providing special rewards that are meaningful to business owners, business credit cards can make bookkeeping much easier. In fact, using a business credit card can take nearly all of the headaches of keeping track of expenses out of your hands, giving you time to focus on company growth.
To help keep bookkeeping a snap, you can place all of your business expenditures on your business credit card. By having a separate personal credit card and business credit card, you don’t have to worry about sorting through your credit card statement to determine which were for your business and which purchases were for personal reasons. In addition, this helps keep the liability for repayment on your business rather than on you personally, which is particularly important if you form any type of business configuration other than a sole proprietorship. In the eyes of the law, other business formations, such as LLCs, are their own entity. Therefore, you are not held personally responsible for the business expenditures because the company is responsible.
Generally, business credit cards also provide the cardholder with itemized statements. These may be monthly, quarterly, or annually, depending on the card. Therefore, when you compare business credit cards, you should inquire about how often these statements are issued and choose the one that best suits your business needs. This feature is quite helpful because it frees you from having to keep track of all of your receipts. Instead of sorting through numerous receipts at tax time, you can simply use your itemized statement or take the statement to your accountant. To help make things easier, some of these itemized statements will even categorize your purchases into different areas needed for filing taxes, such as Office Supplies, Entertainment, and Postage.
In addition to assisting you with bookkeeping, business credit cards can also help you save money. Many offer travel rewards, special business related discounts, or cash back rewards. When you compare business credit cards, be sure to look at the various incentives they offer in order to find the one that best suits your business. If you purchase a great deal of office equipment, for example, you will want a card that provides points or cash for making such purchases.
If your business requires you to travel frequently, you might want to get a business credit card that provides airline mile rewards. These cards typically offer other benefits that are attractive to the traveling businessperson, such as baggage protection, travel insurance, rental car insurance, and discounts at hotels. Again, these cards take away some of your bookkeeping hassles because you don’t have to worry about acquiring these forms of extra protection on your own. Simply use your business credit card and you are covered.
Carrying a Balance
If you anticipate carrying a balance on your credit card from one billing cycle to the next, you should definitely look into acquiring a business credit card with a low APR. Some offer special introductory rates that can last for up to a year depending on the credit card and your credit history. Take full advantage of these cards to get your business up and running and work toward being capable of paying the balance off at the end of each billing cycle. For some businesses, however, carrying a balance is inevitable. Sometimes, paying the balance depends on customer invoicing and customers may not always be reliable about paying their invoices on time. Or, your business may have slow periods where more cash is going out than coming in. In these cases, it is best to acquire a card with a low APR, but that still provides you with all of the desirable bookkeeping features.