Business Credit Benefits

Building business credit for your aged shelf company offers numerous advantages:

Divergent Credit Profile:
  • Cultivate a distinct business credit profile separate from the owner’s credit history, potentially doubling your borrowing capacity.
Enhanced Credit Opportunities:
  • Business accounts typically provide higher credit limits and expanded financial opportunities compared to personal accounts.
Separate Credit Histories:
  • When managed correctly, your company can establish and maintain business credit without affecting your personal credit.
Credit Bureau Isolation:
  • Regardless of your personal credit history, it’s relatively straightforward to access business credit, and the data from your business accounts remains separate from personal credit bureaus.
Broad Eligibility:
  • Nearly any corporation or LLC with an EIN can access business credit, making it widely available to various types of companies.

3 Steps to Build Your Initial Business Credit Profile

Lenders and loan underwriters inquire about specific details:

Information Verification:
  • When was the company filed? Is the information displayed on the Secretary of State consistent with what’s on the business credit application?
  • Where is your business physically located? Is the billing tied to the business name?
  • What is the business phone number? Is it in the business name?
  • What is the website address?
  • Is there a clear linkage between the business address, business phone number, and your name through public records, accounts, and billing?
Address and Contact Consistency:
  • Ensure that the business address is associated with the business name, not your personal name.
  • Establish uniformity across the business phone, fax, email, website, and other contact points, all linked to the business name and the same business address.
  • The information recorded with the Secretary of State (where the company was initially filed and any foreign filings) should align with the data provided in the business credit application.
Building Business Credit:
  • An aged shelf company initiates with a blank credit profile.
  • Develop the business credit profile after acquiring an aged shelf company.
  • Business credit typically matures over a span of six months, with quicker progress and more significant outcomes when using an aged shelf company compared to a new company.
Payment Record Establishment:
  • Manage your business credit by paying off bills as they accumulate.
  • Adherence to timely payments establishes a positive payment record and contributes to your company’s Paydex score.

Step 1: Improve Your Chances of Business Funding with the Basics of Business Credit

When establishing your company’s credit profile, it’s crucial to adhere to the terms and guidelines provided by your credit issuer, following the instructions in the lending application. Key considerations include:

Information Consistency:
  • Ensure that the information on public records, as registered with the Secretary of State, aligns precisely with the details provided on the business credit application. Mismatches can lead to application rejection over potential fraud concerns.
Step-by-Step Credit Building:
  • Begin with Net 30 accounts and progressively advance to Fleet Accounts, Retail Credit, Business Credit Cards, Revolving Lines of Credit, and finally, the Bank Loan.
  • Avoid the common mistake of applying for a bank loan as the first step. Building your business credit over approximately six months precedes the bank loan application.
Fraud Prevention and Cross-Referencing:
  • Lenders employ various resources, such as LexisNexis, Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, The Small Business Financial Exchange, Equifax, and ChexSystems, to cross-reference organizations with the information on loan applications.
  • The primary objective of lenders is to ensure borrowers can repay loans on schedule and in full. New businesses under two years of age are often viewed with caution due to their higher failure rates, making an aged shelf company of at least two years advantageous.
Benefits of an Aged Shelf Company:
  • An aged company is more likely to gain the trust of customers, landlords, and lenders.
  • It facilitates securing deposits for work projects and bolsters revenue, enhancing lending prospects.
  • Landlords prefer leasing to established companies.
  • Customers are more inclined to engage with your business.
  • Obtaining deposits for work projects becomes easier.
  • Lenders exhibit a preference for older companies over newer ones.
  • An aged shelf company enhances your ability to compete effectively with established competitors in your industry.
  • Business loan underwriters also evaluate factors like credit, cash flow, and collateral when assessing lending suitability.

Starting your business with an aged shelf company presents clear advantages across various aspects of business operations.

Business Name

  • To avoid application rejections and ensure a smooth business loan process, consider the following points:
Consistent Business Name:
  • Ensure that the name used in your business loan application precisely matches the official business name registered with the Secretary of State.
Uniformity Across Records:
  • Maintain consistency in the name used across all company records, bank accounts, and certificates.
Authority Validation:
  • Verify that your title aligns with the company’s legal structure. If it’s a corporation, ensure you’re listed as Director/President; for an LLC, confirm your role as Manager.
  • Financial institutions primarily seek to confirm your capacity to sign for the loan and represent the company, often cross-referencing public records and internal company records.
High-Risk Market Considerations:
  • Be aware that if your company operates in a high-risk market, it may encounter challenges related to its name.
  • High-risk markets are typically associated with businesses involving frequent cash transactions or a higher likelihood of workplace injuries.
Name and Industry Associations:
  • If possible, avoid a business name that could associate your company with a higher-risk industry.
Identifying High-Risk Industries:
  • Research industries deemed “high risk” by searching online for terms like “HIGH RISK NAIC CODES” or “HIGH RISK SIC CODES.”
  • Review lists to identify industries to steer clear of when describing your business.

Ensuring alignment between your business name, legal structure, and industry description enhances your chances of successfully securing a business loan.

Business Phone Number

  • When establishing a business phone number, consider the following options and tips:
Physical Phone Number:
  • Opt for a physical phone number for your business, which is the most reliable choice.
  • Local telephone companies may issue market expansion lines or landlines without the need for physical installation at a specific location, with calls forwarded to your cell phone or answering service.
Retail Location Phone Line:
  • If your business has a retail location, installing a business phone line is the most dependable approach.
Number Changes:
  • It’s not uncommon to acquire a new phone number if you’ve recently relocated to a different state or have filed as a foreign corporation/LLC.
Credibility of Toll-Free Numbers:
  • Lenders often view toll-free or 800 numbers as highly credible.
Avoid Home or Mobile Numbers:
  • Refrain from using your home or mobile phone number for your business. Instead, consider a landline or 800 number, which can be forwarded to your cell phone while maintaining a professional image.
Fax Number Benefits:
  • When obtaining a business phone number, also consider acquiring a fax number, as it enhances your company’s credibility in the eyes of lenders.
  • A fax number is crucial for collecting essential documents and sending faxed credit applications.
Service Providers:
  • Companies like Freedom Voice and RingCentral offer cost-effective options for obtaining a fax number for your business, which functions similarly to a phone number.
  • These providers may also offer Voice Over IP (VoIP) services, which can serve as an alternative.
Temporary Use of Toll-Free Numbers:
  • While setting up your business phone number, you can utilize a toll-free number temporarily to maintain professionalism.

Selecting the right business phone number and fax number can positively impact your company’s credibility, especially when dealing with lenders and financial institutions.

How to Obtain a 411 Listing

Newer companies sometimes overlook the importance of having their phone number listed in 411 directories, which can be a signal to lenders that a business is well-established. To ensure your company’s credibility:

411 Directory Listing:
  • Ensure that your business phone number is included in 411 directories.
Startup Oversight:
  • Startup businesses may not always be automatically added to 411 listings, potentially leading to missed opportunities to showcase their established presence.
Public Listing on Search Engines:
  • To qualify for a 411 directory entry, your company’s phone number should be publicly listed on popular search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing.
Quick 411 Listing:
  • For a convenient and rapid way to secure a 411 listing, consider visiting

Maintaining an accurate and visible presence in 411 directories can enhance your company’s reputation and credibility, particularly when dealing with lenders and financial institutions.

Business Address

To ensure the approval of your credit application, consider the following address-related tips:

Avoid Home Address:
  • Refrain from using your home address on the application. Instead, opt for a virtual office address.
Ideal Virtual Office Location:
  • For optimal results, the virtual office address should be located within a 35-mile radius of the address listed on your driver’s license.
Address Verification:
  • Lenders may verify your business address using Google Street View, so ensure its authenticity.
PO Boxes and UPS Addresses:
  • Do not list or use a PO box or UPS address on your application, as this can lead to application rejection.
Benefits of Physical Business Address:
  • A physical business address is preferred, aligning with the practices of many successful companies.
Virtual Address as an Alternative:
  • Virtual addresses have gained popularity and respect, especially post-Covid, as a viable alternative for those without a physical address.
  • They allow you to rent a mailing address or meeting room from reputable office providers at a lower cost.
Virtual Address Providers:
  • Companies like Regis, Da Vinci, and Coalition can assist you in obtaining a virtual address.
Consistency is Key:
  • Ensure that your address matches across all your business records, both online and offline, including with the Secretary of State. Consistency is crucial for credibility.

Maintaining a consistent and credible business address, whether physical or virtual, can improve your chances of credit application approval.

Business Website

To ensure your company’s growth and reputation, having a professional website is essential, and there are several key considerations:

Domain Forwarding:
  • When purchasing an aged shelf company, you can forward their existing domain to maintain continuity.
Preferred Domain:
  • Your company’s website domain should ideally be in the format of or
Reliable Hosting Providers:
  • Choose reputable hosting providers like GoDaddy and avoid platforms like Wix or Weebly for your website.
Search Engine Visibility:
  • Ensure your website can be easily found on popular search engines, including Yelp, Zagat, Citysearch, and 411 Directories.
Security Measures:
  • Enhance website security with an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) setup to establish encrypted connections between clients and servers.
Website Updates:
  • Maintain an updated and well-designed website to portray a positive company image.
  • Keep elements like backlinks and website architecture current.
Payment Options:
  • Your website should accept payments from a variety of credit card companies to build trust.
Trust Seals:
  • Display trust seals such as McAfee, Verisign, and TrustE to enhance credibility.
Secretary of State Compliance:
  • Ensure that any public records listed with the Secretary of State adhere to the rules mentioned on your website.
Social Media Presence:
  • In today’s digital age, a strong social media presence is vital for your company’s reputation and growth.
Measuring Social Media Presence:
  • Gauge your social media presence through metrics like shares, followers, web engagement, news reports, scores, check-ins, and endorsements.

A professionally managed website and a robust online presence contribute significantly to your company’s success and credibility.

Business Email

To project a professional and trustworthy image for your company, consider the following email-related guidelines:

Custom Email Address:
  • Opt for a custom email address that matches your company’s domain and website for a cohesive online presence.
Email Format:
  • Utilize common and professional email address formats like and for effective communication.
Avoid Generic Email Services:
  • When creating your business email, steer clear of using generic email services such as:

These practices help establish a more professional and credible online identity for your company.

The Secretary of States Office

To ensure smooth operations and compliance for your business, it’s crucial to take the following steps:

Consistent Company Identifiers:
  • Confirm that all major authorities such as the IRS and your bank have consistent company identifiers across all records and documents.
Billing Information Accuracy:
  • Verify that bills you receive for expenses like rent and internet services display the correct business name and are sent to the corresponding address.
License Procurement:
  • Obtain any necessary licenses for your business operations from the Secretary of State’s office.
Secretary of State Resources:
  • Utilize the resources and guidance offered by the Secretary of State’s office, which can provide valuable information and assistance, especially if you need to pursue further education to maintain your licenses.
Differing Processing Times:
  • Be aware that processing times for various tasks may vary, so it’s essential to plan and manage your business affairs accordingly.

These practices help ensure your business operates smoothly, complies with regulations, and maintains accurate records.

Business Bank Account

Establishing a dedicated bank account for your business is crucial for financial organization and credibility. Here are some key points to consider:

Business-Specific Account:
  • Maintain a separate bank account exclusively for your business to prevent mixing personal and business funds.
Online Account Application:
  • Many banks offer convenient online applications for business bank accounts.
Early Account Opening:
  • Open your business bank account as soon as possible to build an established business history, which is preferable to banks.
Personal Account Consideration:
  • If you have a well-managed personal account, opening a new business account can be a swift process.
Credit Score Evaluation:
  • Banks assess your creditworthiness using an internal score based on your average account balance over the last 90 days.
Minimum Balance Requirement:
  • To qualify for a loan, you typically need a minimum balance of at least $10,000 in your company’s bank account.
Personal Credit Influence:
  • Larger banks like Chase and Wells Fargo may consider your personal credit when lending, depending on the loan amount.

Establishing a dedicated business bank account is essential for financial clarity and building a strong credit profile for your company.

Your EIN and Business Entity

Obtaining a Federal Tax ID Number (EIN) for your business is essential, even if you don’t have employees. Here are some key considerations:

Business EIN Necessity:
  • Your company must have an EIN, similar to how individuals have Social Security numbers.
Consistent EIN Usage:
  • Ensure that the same EIN is consistently used and identified with various entities such as banks, agencies, and trade credit vendors.
Free EIN Acquisition:
  • You can obtain an EIN for your business at no cost by visiting IRS.GOV.

Having a business EIN is fundamental for tax and legal purposes, and it’s crucial to maintain consistency in its usage across different business interactions.

Aged Shelf Companies

Utilizing an aged shelf company offers several advantages when starting your business journey:

Leverage Existing Positive History:
  • Begin selling your products and services with a company that already possesses a positive and established history in terms of age.
Rapid Relationship Development:
  • Overcome objections related to your business’s age more quickly, facilitating the development of valuable relationships.
Time and Effort Savings:
  • Save time as you won’t have to wait for your company/LLC to meet the two-year requirement for certain opportunities.
Reduced Workload and Stress:
  • An aged company minimizes the workload and stress associated with starting from scratch.
Enhanced Closing Abilities:
  • Improve your ability to close sales and negotiate contracts, reducing the risk of losses.
Effective Competitor Challenge:
  • Compete effectively with established competitors in your industry.

Utilizing an aged shelf company strategically accelerates your business endeavors and positions you for success.

Personal Guarantees

When it comes to loans, minimizing the use of personal guarantees is advisable. Here are some key points to consider:

Types of Personal Guarantees:
  • Personal guarantees for loans can be either limited or unlimited.
Preference for Limited Guarantees:
  • Whenever possible, opt for limited personal guarantees to restrict your liability.
Unlimited Guarantees Risk:
  • With an unlimited personal guarantee, you are held accountable for the entire loan, including associated fees if borrowers cannot repay.
Impact of Default:
  • In the event of default, having a personal guarantee limits your financial exposure.
Credit Record Presence:
  • Personal guarantee loans are typically listed on your credit record.
Financial Security Matters:
  • Your company’s financial security and stability can reduce the uncertainty of personal guarantees.
Be Prepared for Financial Hit:
  • In case your company faces challenges, be ready to absorb a financial setback without compromising its financial integrity.
Credit Profile Enhancement:
  • Personal guarantees can strengthen your company’s credit profile, but as your credit improves, aim to minimize their use.

Balancing the use of personal guarantees is essential for managing risk and ensuring the financial well-being of your business.

DBA/Fictitious Business Name/trade Name

Here are some key points about DBA (Doing-Business-As) and its significance:

  • DBA stands for Doing-Business-As, indicating a fictitious or trade name.
  • Using a DBA is a sign of a company expanding into new markets or territories.
  • It can be advantageous to use a DBA, especially for sole proprietorships.
  • When registering a business, a DBA serves as an alias or mock-up name.
  • If a company operates under a different name than its legal one, it is using a DBA.
  • If your business is not legally established, you cannot use a name that implies it’s an LLC.
  • A DBA does not alter the business owner or liability structure.
  • While DBAs can aid in branding and banking, business owners’ personal assets may still be at risk in legal matters.
  • Some entrepreneurs use DBAs to enhance the appeal of new brands, products, or services.
  • DBAs are valuable for unregistered businesses and sole proprietors.
  • They enable organizations to create new business branches while retaining a single name.
  • Instead of changing the legal business name, a DBA can help with rebranding existing LLCs.

Using a DBA can be a strategic choice for various business purposes and structures.

What States Should I Consider When Buying the  Shelf corporation?

Obtain a  Shelf corporation from a state that requires a low annual filing fee to maintain the company, respects your property rights, and doesn’t require disclosure of the owners of the company on public record. Montana corporations are ideal. The annual filing fee is $20 per year. The New Mexico LLC’s work great in California as well. There’s no annual fee for a NM LLC.