How to build business credit with Dun and Bradstreet

Every one always ask me how to start a business. Here is a good instruction guide.

Business credit is also a way of building your company’s image and identity. The following are 9 Steps to Building Credit for Your Business: InstructionsDifficulty: Moderately Challenging Steps1

Step One
Decide how you want to structure your business. This may take some research but a few common ways to structure a business are: C-Corporation; S-Corporation; Sole-Proprietorship; Limited Liability and Partnerships. For business credit separate from your personal credit you will need to structure your business as a Corporation or LLC. You can also purchase a “shelf” or “aged” corporation in the State where you want to do business. A shelf or aged corporation is one which has no activity and is created and put on the “shelf” to age and use at a later date. There are companies which sell shelf corporations. 2

Step Two
Obtain an employer identification number (EIN). Business credit applications require your business name, business address and employer identification number. You may obtain an EIN from the IRS online. (www.irs.gov). The application is really basic and takes about 5 minutes. As a sole proprietor you may apply or if you are a corporation any officer may apply. 3

Step Three
Open a separate bank account under the exact legal name of the business. Business checking accounts can be opened with as little as a $100.00 deposit. 4

Step Four
Business address and telephone number must be listed under the business name in the 411 directory and the telephone must be answered in your business name. 5

Step Five
Obtain required business license, permits, registrations, etc., in the City or Jurisdiction where you do business. 6

Step Six
Technically, at this point you are ready to establish business credit with some vendors such as Staples. Simply go to www.staples.com fax your business phone bill along with the credit application on your business letterhead to apply for business credit. No personal guarantee is required and you should receive the standard business credit line of $750.00. 7

Step Seven
Establish a profile with Dun and Bradstreet (DNB) and obtain a D-U-N-S Number. DNB is the largest tracker of business credit. The D-U-N-S Number is a nine-digit identification number that provides unique identifiers of business entities. The website for Dun & Bradstreet is www.dnb.com. There is no charge and you will receive a D-U-N-S Number within 30 business days. You can pay for their credit builder services in order to receive the D-U-N-S immediately, but it is definitely not necessary. Companies where you apply for credit that use Dun & Bradstreet services will request your credit file and this will establish your file. It may take up to 45 days for the companies to report.

Note: If you do decide to pay for their credit builder services preparation is vital when contacting Dun & Bradstreet. Make sure you have covered all your bases. What you say to DNB goes permanently into your file. 8

Step Eight
Now that you have received your D-U-N-S number you are prepared to apply for business credit. As you begin to establish business credit it is imperative that you pay your invoices before the grace period. A Paydex Score of 80 is considered very good and is based on your payment history with at least five (5) vendors. It makes a difference for every day you pay earlier than the actual due date unlike personal credit. Business credit scores range on a scale from 0 to 100 and a Paydex score of 80 will get you the best business credit cards and terms. 9

Step Nine
After completing the process you may want to apply to the following companies with no personal guarantee required. Do not apply for everything at one time. This may get your business credit file flagged. Allow a couple of weeks between applications.

Office Depot-UPS-Staples-Fedex/Kinkos-TMobile-Dell Computers-Office Max-Nextel-Chevron Oil-Cingular-Nebs

Edit | Leave A Comment »


11 Responses to “How to build business credit with Dun and Bradstreet”

  1. 1 antoinette
    February 26, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    Thank you to who ever created this site….I was completely lost until I came across this site. I had my Tax number,,,,,but did not know where to go next.
    Thanks Again

  2. 2 jeanita candio
    February 26, 2008 at 5:13 pm

    i called dunn & brad to establish a free dunn’s number and they’ve advised me that the free dunn’s number will not establish credit and that it’s for government use only. i can only establish credit if I pay for them to establish me a file. is that true?

    Please advise.


  3. 3 susan
    April 2, 2008 at 1:50 am

    yes jeanita, it is true and i applied or mine and got mine today. pay the money and ask for the 10% discount they give–$296.10.

  4. 4 bigfacesboutique
    April 2, 2008 at 7:17 pm

    I have learned that though you don’t have to pay for the dun and bradstreet monitor program. That without it, it is very hard to establish your business credit as fast and long lasting as ifyou do use their program.

    Nothing is free in life folks…

  5. 5 tom gunton
    April 16, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    Thank you for the info! If you get a corp through legalzoom.com you can apply right away for corporate credit cards (amex,and visa) included with your start up. Staples is the only company i have found that will give a card to anyone without a personal guarantee. Do you know any others? Feel free to email me any other info about this matter. Thank you in advance, Tom Gunton email. vandelaysalesrep@gmail.com

  6. 6 Marchall
    July 12, 2008 at 2:40 am

    I tried to apply for a Staples account online, but it did not give me an approval right away. Is that an indication that it won’t get approved? I hear a lot of people say its easy to get credit from them.

  7. July 17, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    It is confusing when you say get an EIN – sounds like that’s for an employee.
    Less confusing to say get a TIN (tax id number) for the company – that’s the purpose.
    They are the same though.

    Do you fill out a paper application to those companies or can you fill out an application online?
    I’d prefer to do it quickly online unless there are there any benefits to manually filling one out and mailing it.

    -David G.

    Free Real Estate Investing Training: http://www.webuyhousescoaching.com

  8. 8 Kate
    September 30, 2008 at 8:20 pm

    Building business credit is esstential, not only to show others your are credit worthy for things like, expanding your companies, hiring new employees, getting a business loan, but its also crutial to bidding on work as well.. Many companies use D&B to see that you are a low risk to do business with.

    The paydex score is very important, however, it is not the most important score that D&B has. The commerical Credit Score that predicts the delinquincy rate in the future is what banks, credit cards and leasing companies are looking at. The Paydex score is a factor in that score, however, without paying for a credit file with D&B, you will not be eligble for a commerical credit score. There are some companies who will approve you for credit regardless if you have an established file with D&B or not, however, with the enconomy going down the drain, financial insitituions are restricting credit limits and hiking iterest rates every oppertunity they can.

    Do you really want to be constantly trying to climb up a slippery rope of building credit with the hopes that someone will build your file, or start reporting (Not all companies report to D&B) or build and establish your companies good standing credit history from the inception?

    It will start getting very hard for companies to get approved for credit unless they have stellar scores within D&B’s data base..

    If you need additional information feel free to email me any questions katyclaire19@yahoo.com

  9. 9 Randy
    October 24, 2008 at 1:02 am

    I followed the instructions and got my Staples account a few minutes ago. What other companies allow for credit against the EIN number without a personal guarantee? I also heard of services that charge thousands of dollars to get new companies “business credit” Are they scam artists? Are there traditional credit card companies like VISA, Mastercard & AMEX that grant credit on business EIN & DUNS without personal guarantee? glmplus@yahoo.com Randy

  10. 10 Shan
    November 30, 2008 at 8:07 pm

    I was able to get a business credit card at LOWES. They will give you credit based on your tax i.d #. You can apply online and get an instant approval. Now, there is a place on the application where it will ask if you want to personally guarantee the card, but you don’t have to in order to get approved. The longer you’ve been in business the better your chances are of getting approved.

  11. December 9, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    I think what he was saying was, you can either pay for the credit profile to be established OR you can just get your free DNB number and let the creditors establish your profile for free. Here’s how it works:

    1. You set up a DNB number for free.
    2. You do all the other necessary steps outlined in this blog.
    3. You apply for, say, a Staples store credit card (or a business cell…it really doesn’t matter).
    4. Staples will run your DNB number to check your credit and the moment they run your credit to see if Staples should issue you a store credit card, your profile will automatically be established.

    At any rate, you won’t have to pay for the credit establishing services offer by D&B. That fee is just for D&B to make a little profit off other people’s lack of knowledge concerning how the system works.

    I know it was a long comment but I hope this helps.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: