A small business credit card for new businesses is an indispensable financing resource. It appeals best to small business credit card owners with a steady, flexible stream of cash while providing perks like points and rewards in the process.
If you’re seeking to obtain the best business credit cards, but your company has a poor credit score, or you have a business credit card with no credit history, you’re considered a higher-risk borrower. Banks and lenders will likely require you to present a personal guarantee to apply for a business credit card – meaning documentation of your personal credit cards for new business with no credit history – to reduce this risk.
A personal guarantee essentially shows lenders that, if for any reason your business is unable to pay off the business credit card balance, you, as the business owner, are personally liable for the repayments.
Finding a lender that won’t require a personal guarantee for small business credit cards can be challenging. Plain and simple, lenders are not comfortable handing out a financing resource without some sort of backup plan in place should you default on payments.
Not to worry. We’ve gone ahead and compiled a list of the best credit cards for small businesses with no personal guarantee.
What is a Personal Guarantee?
In the simplest terms, a personal guarantee is a business owner’s personal liability and responsibility to pay off the loan balance. This usually takes effect when a company becomes unable to fulfill the repayments because of cash flow issues or bankruptcy.
Since the business owner takes on the debt personally, the business credit card issuer can seize any personal asset that belongs to the owner.
Best Business Credit Cards That Doesn’t Require a Personal Guarantee
1. Shell Small Business Card
Stripe is not a bank nor a financing company, but a technology company that serves as an avenue for online payments. The company has become an invaluable tool for the rising e-commerce industry and now offers a Corporate Visa Credit Card to its members.
The Stripe Corporate Card offers the best business credit cards for new businesses. While it may not follow the traditional credit card reward program, it does offer the cardholders instant cashback on the products or services that they spend most of their money on. Typically, the users can get a 2% cashback on their top two categories and 1% cashback on any other expenses. Stripe also offers fraud protection. The credit card users can simply report their card lost or stolen through their Stripe Dashboard, and the Stripe team will automatically disable it. If there are any proven fraudulent transactions made, the amount will be credited back to your account.
Stripe Corporate Cards don’t charge their users with annual fees and foreign transaction fees. The company doesn’t allow its users to have an outstanding balance on their accounts, so there’s no reason to worry about APR fees on business credit cards for small businesses.
The one downside of a Stripe Corporate Card is that it doesn’t offer any travel benefits. If your business does require you to travel from time to time, you may need to obtain an additional credit card solely for that purpose.
Requirements Needed for Stripe Corporate Card
According to Stripe’s website, you can get your virtual credit card up and running within minutes after your application. There’s no need to present or submit paperwork, and you can directly apply for a business credit card with no personal guarantee. Once approved, Stripe will grant you a credit limit based on your payment history and your bank history. The newer your Stripe account is, the lower your credit limit will be. As you establish your payment history in your Stripe account, you’ll have better chances of increasing your credit limit.
2. Brex’s Credit Card
Brex Inc. is a financial service and tech company based in San Francisco. It offers business credit cards without a personal guarantee, free of annual fees and personal guarantees. Its main purpose is to provide small business credit cards for new businesses with a funding solution of credit limits based on the company’s cash flow. Brex doesn’t evaluate a company’s eligibility based on the owner’s credit report, it instead looks at the business’ spending habits and sales volume to determine its qualifications.
Brex’s credit card is one of the most sought-after financing resources in the business world because it offers businesses amazing perks with zero annual fees – particularly those in the tech, lab sciences, and e-commerce industries – and a business line of credit with no personal guarantee. Users can earn points every time they use their credit cards for new businesses with no credit history to pay for travel, food, and even marketing strategies like digital ads. It’s powered by MasterCard, so the cardholders can use it in any country that accepts MasterCard payments without having to worry about foreign transaction fees.
What makes Brex’s Credit Cards even more attractive to business owners these days is its remote work-focused reward scheme. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Brex Inc. has allowed businesses to earn as much as seven points per dollar for every remote-work tool they purchase, as well as three points per dollar on food deliveries and two points on work-related software subscriptions.
Requirements Needed to Apply for Brex’s Credit Cards
Brex can acquire you to apply for small business credit cards without a personal guarantee, but their requirements for approval are more stringent than the options previously listed. Applicants must show that their business generates annual revenue of at least $4 million and that its annual expenses reach at least $250,000. Businesses should also have at least $100,000 in the bank.
3. Bremer Bank Visa Signature Business Company Card
The Bremer Bank Visa Signature Business Company Card or a Bremer bank credit card is one of many financing options that Bremer Bank offers to business owners with medium to large enterprises. This card provides a generous business line of credit, no personal guarantee of access to a free rewards program, and does not come with annual and APR fees. If you want to apply for one, all you need to do is visit one of the Bremer Bank branches in Minnesota, North Dakota, or Wisconsin.
According to Supermoney, the benefits of these new business credit cards include travel assistance, emergency support, fraud liability, and accurate and timely reporting to the credit bureaus. A more specific list of the benefits associated with the Bremer Visa Signature Business Company Card is available upon request. Simply fill out a form on the Bremer Bank’s website, and they will email you the desired information.
Things to note: Bremer Best Small Business Credit Cards do charge users a 3% foreign transaction fee on any purchases made abroad. If your business requires international travel, it’s best to use an alternative business credit card for small businesses that don’t charge a foreign transaction fee for those expenses. Bremer also charges a late penalty of $39 to your account if you miss the deadline for payment.
Requirements Needed to Apply for Bremer Bank Visa Signature Business Company Card
While Bremer Bank offers business credit cards with no personal guarantee, it does require a good credit score (at least 780 or better). Remember, you have to apply for this one at the bank, so you can also expect them to ask for a list of documents like personal and business financial statements, credit reports, and your company’s balance sheets.
4. Office Depot OfficeMax Business Credit Account
Office Depot and OfficeMax merged in 2013 to form one of the largest office retail companies in the world. Businesses that regularly purchase office supplies from Office Depot credit card or OfficeMax may benefit from applying for an Office Depot business card and OfficeMax Business Credit Account that the company now offers.
These credit cardholders can enjoy a $50 savings on their first purchase amounting to $150 or more, and there’s no annual card fee. If you need multiple cards for other authorized persons in your company, you will not have to pay extra fees for additional cards.
Office Depot OfficeMax Credit Accounts can only be used for purchases made in Office Depot credit card and OfficeMax branches or online stores.
Requirements Needed to Apply for Office Depot OfficeMax Credit Accounts
You can apply for an Office Depot business card and OfficeMax Credit Account from one of the Citibank branches. Businesses with a fair credit score (650 and higher) may qualify for this credit card. Your company should be at least three years old with annual sales of over $5 million. *Office Depot and OfficeMax also require the applying business to be affiliated with either a government entity or a non-profit organization.
5. Ramp Corporate Cards
Ramp Corporation is a start-up business credit cards no personal guarantee company that recently opened its doors to the public. They provide one of the best corporate business credit cards without personal guarantees to small business credit card owners and offer an accounting system that helps them regulate their company’s spending habits. They believe that through this program, entrepreneurs can cut back on their expenses and save more money as they move forward with their operations.
The ramp offers an unlimited number of cards for all your employees without extra charges. You can set a credit limit for each and receive a monthly report for all purchases made within that particular month. There are no transaction fees or annual fees, and even the interest rates are waived with this credit card.
According to the company, it plans on making profits through interchange fees, or the fees that its card issuers charge the stores for credit card payment processing.
Unlike other startup business credit cards with no personal guarantee, the points system of Ramp isn’t complicated. You don’t earn more points when you purchase a particular type of service, like dining, travel, or subscriptions. Instead, your company will earn a uniform 1.5% cashback on all purchases made using the Ramp card.
The Ramp Corporate Card also offers $175,000 ‘exclusive partner rewards’ to their customers. This means that their customers can enjoy a variety of perks in the form of credits and discounts from the companies that Ramp partners with.
Here are some examples:
- $150 credit on Google Ads
- 20% off on your first year of Carta subscription
- $50,000 on Segment Credits
- 90% off on a year of DocSend Advanced Plan subscription
Requirements Needed to Apply for Ramp Corporate Card
Currently, Ramp still hasn’t revealed their eligibility requirements to the public. If you’re planning to apply for a business credit card, it’s best to contact them directly to know how you can qualify.
They do, however, offer their credit cards to non-individual companies with a high potential for growth. If your company is a sole-proprietorship, there’s a big chance that you won’t be eligible for the Ramp Corporate Card.
Your credit limit will be based primarily on your company’s cash flow and other financial health indicators. Be sure to have all of your company’s financial statements ready when applying for this credit card.
6. Divvy Credit Cards
Aside from the fact that it doesn’t require a personal guarantee, one of the things that make DIvvy credit cards shine is their embedded expense tracking system. This helps companies track their budgets easier, thus, allowing them to maintain a stable cash flow and avoid cash flow issues.
The Divvy corporate credit card lets business owners earn points on certain purchases, including restaurants, software subscriptions, and hotels. Their point-reward system differs from that of other credit card issuers in a way that it lets you earn points based on your repayment structure. We’ll break down Divvy’s point system below based on their repayment schedule.
For weekly payments, a business owner can earn:
- 7x points on restaurant expenses
- 5x points on hotels
- 2x points on recurring software subscriptions
- 1.5x points on other expenses
For twice-a-month payments, business owners can earn points as much as:
- 4x on restaurants
- 3x on hotels
- 1.75x on recurring software subscriptions
- 1x on other expenses
For monthly repayments, you can earn these rates:
- 2x points on restaurants and hotels
- 1.5x on monthly software subscriptions
- 1x on other expenses
Other benefits of using Divvy's corporate credit card include earning discounts and credits every time you purchase from their partner companies such as Amazon, Google Ads, FedEx, and Costco.
Requirements Needed to Apply Divvy Corporate Cards
Divvy works with businesses, regardless of their entities. Currently, the company hasn’t disclosed its eligibility requirements. The only information they provided is that the business must have a U.S. bank account and an EIN. With that, you’ll have to contact Divvy directly to know how to qualify and what additional requirements you’ll need.
7. Silicone Valley Bank (SVB) Innovators Card
If you’re a startup, then the Silicone Valley Bank (SVB) Innovators Card might be the best choice for you. It meets the no personal guarantee requirement in this post, and offers more perks like no introductory and regular APR and they don’t charge an annual fee for the card. However, business owners need a good personal credit to qualify for the card. This balances out the risk for the credit card issuer.
With the SVB Innovators Card, you’ll earn a uniform 2x points for every dollar you spend. Plus, you don’t have to pay extra for cards you distribute to your employees. You can claim your reward as statement credit, travel, gift cards, or merchandise.
The only downside associated with the SVB Innovators Card is that business owners must pay the full balance at the end of each month. That said, if you’d rather spread your payments, you might have to consider othe business credit card options.
Requirements Needed to Apply for SVB Innovators Card
One of the first requirements of the SVB Card is that the business owner must have an existing business bank account with the bank. Although the credit card doesn’t require a personal guarantee, your personal assets will play a role in the determination of your credit limit.
Application can be done online. As you start the application, they will ask more information about your business including the year you started, revenue information, physical address, and others.
The bank may also ask the funding sources you’re using or if you’re involved in any pilor programs. To know more about the requirements, you’ll have to contact the bank directly.
8. Sam’s Club Business Mastercard
The Sam’s Club Business Mastercard is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a credit card that lets you earn rewards without having to pay an annual fee and signing a personal guarantee. It also lets businesses earn substantial rewards on eligible purchases, particularly purchases made at Sam’s Club.
Sam’s Club Business Mastercard holders, particularly Plus members, can earn as much as 5% cash back annually on their first $6,000 spent on any Sam’s Club and Walmart gas stations, then 1% after the first $6,000 is reached. Aside from that, businesses can earn 3% cash back on restaurant purchases and 3% on any Sam’s Club purchases. However, if you’re a Plus member, you can earn a 1% cash back on all eligible purchases, even those made on Sam’s Club.
Sam’s Club Card is a Mastercard. That said, you can use the card virtually anywhere as long as the store accepts Mastercard payments.
Upon opening a Sam’s Club Business Mastercard, the credit card issuer will grant you a $30 statement credit. They also offer 0% introductory APR and their regular APR hovers around 15.65% - 23.65%. There’s no annual fee, but members must pay a $100 fee for membership.
Requirements Needed to Apply for Sam’s Club Business Mastercard
The first requirement borrowers must comply with Sam’s Club Business Card is that they must become a member of Sam’s club. Secondly, the business must be incorporated, and their personal credit score must be 690 or better.
Additionally, your company must have more than ten employees, annual revenue of at least $5 million, and at least 2 years of business history.
Best Corporate Credit Cards for Transportation and Trucking Businesses Without Personal Guarantee
9. Shell Small Business Card
One of the best credit cards for small businesses is the Shell Business Card (offered by the Royal Dutch Shell Company but issued by Citibank). It’s one of the best credit cards for LLCs and companies, and entrepreneurs operating in the transportation industry – particularly those that manage a fleet of vehicles or trucks.
This is due to the limitations of its use. It’s one of the many business gas cards without a personal guarantee, so businesses can use the card to purchase products bought at the Shell convenience stores. This includes oil and gas purchases at Shell Stations which are considered as best credit cards for small businesses. Cardholders can enjoy six cents of rebates per gallon of gasoline bought. If and when you need your vehicles maintained, your Shell Card also affords you a 15% discount in any participating Jiffy Lube branches nationwide.
Again, the Shell Small Business Card is certainly most beneficial for companies working in transportation. It is also suitable as a business credit card for new companies because it has a business credit card, no personal guarantee, and it’s free of any recurring or account set-up fees. You also won’t have to pay for any additional cards you may request.
Requirements Needed to Apply for Shell Small Business Card
The Shell Small Business Card doesn’t have stringent requirements. You’ll have a higher chance of approval if your business has a credit score of at least 580 or higher.
10. Coast Card
An alternative to the Shell Credit Card is the Coast Card. Plus, business owners can get a bonus of $100 in statement credit after their first $1,000 purchase in the first three months of use.
Unlike its competitor, the benefits of the Coast Card is limited. For instance, businesses may only get up to 2 cents of discount per gallon of gas they buy at fuel stations. However, unlike Shell Corporate Card, the rebate is applicable in all gas stations.
It also offers expense tracking, making it easier for businesses to track where their money goes. It also offers spending controls, ensuring that the business sticks to a specific budget.
Moreover, the Coast Card charges a $2 fee on every card every month. This may be a drawback for businesses, especially those that are still in the early stages of operation. Still, it’s a good option to consider for businesses looking for a credit card that doesn’t require a personal guarantee.
Are Business Credit Cards With No Personal Guarantee Requirement Worth It?
Almost all business credit cards require a personal guarantee to secure the financing. However, other credit card issuers may be willing to offer cards without a personal guarantee, as long as their financials are stable and their credit ratings are within what’s construed as good ratings.
But some may still ask, “Is it worth it?”
The answer ultimately depends on how comfortable you are with personal liability. As mentioned above, cards that require a personal guarantee mean there’s personal liability involved. On the other hand, cards without a personal guarantee don’t hold you personally liable for the debt. Essentially, your personal assets are safe.
More than that, credit cards without a personal guarantee usually come with higher rates and fees compared to those with personal guarantee requirements. That is also worth considering.
The bottom line is, if you’re not comfortable putting your personal assets on the line in case your business cannot pay off the debt, then credit cards without a personal guarantee can be an excellent choice.
Credit Cards With No Personal Alternative: Business Lines of Credit
If you can’t qualify for a credit card that doesn’t require a personal guarantee, it’s not the end of the world. There are other options you can consider.
For one, a business line of credit can be a good option. It works similarly to that of a credit card, where there’s a set credit limit that borrowers cannot go beyond. It’s also a revolving credit, so every time you pay what you owe, the credit available also goes up.
You can draw any amount from it on an as-needed basis, and you can use it for virtually any business need. It could be working capital, inventory, equipment purchase, and even day-to-day expenses.
The best part is that many who offer business lines of credit may work with business owners with poor personal credit scores. That said, it’s a viable option to consider if you can’t qualify for credit cards with no personal guarantee
Business Credit Cards Without Personal Guarantee: Final Thoughts
Adequate working capital is vital for any growing business. But looking for an additional financial resource can be challenging given the strict requirements and qualifications that lenders and banks impose. Although credit cards are relatively easier to apply for than traditional bank loans, it can be hard to find a financing company that requires a no personal guarantee for business credit cards.
Luckily for businesses, there are a lot of companies that offer the best business credit cards for new businesses without a personal guarantee. While some may have limitations on how the business can use these cards, they can still be a helpful financial resource for companies that are looking to grow and expand.
It depends on the terms issued by the credit card providers. Most business credit cards come with a personal guarantee requirement. That means you will be personally liable for the credit card debt if the business cannot repay the loan.
Some credit card companies, like the ones mentioned above, may offer business credit cards without a personal guarantee. However, business owners will most likely have to meet a specific standard to qualify for one (i.e., high credit ratings, revenue, etc.).
Yes. There are a lot of benefits that come with using an EIN or employer identification number when applying for a business credit card. Business owners use EIN to apply for business credit cards as it allows them to easily separate business and personal transactions, which come in handy during the tax season.
Moreover, using EIN instead of your social security number will put the business itself as the liable entity when it comes to card-related debts. But it’s also worth noting that some credit card issuers may ask for your social security number, especially when a personal guarantee is rolled into the financing terms.
It’s worth noting that the protection that comes with business credit cards also differs from that of a personal credit card. While consumer credit cards are protected by the CARD act of 2009, business credit cards are typically exempted from the same protections. Some credit card issuers may apply this to their corporate card products, but it’s essential to know the card’s terms and conditions before applying.
Business card providers may also extend some protection as a courtesy to small business owners. This includes:
- Insurance to cover credit card misuse by employees
- Additional insurance to cover misuse or fraudulent activities on the credit card
- Zero liability policies render business owners free from fraudulent charges on the account.
- Online guarantees to protect cardholders and transactions.
Some credit card providers may accept borrowers with a business credit of 600. But note that a credit score below 680 may affect your chances of securing flexible financing terms. You can expect the issuers to grant you a lower credit limit and high APRs with a lower credit score.
Furthermore, if you’re applying for business credit cards without personal guarantees, having a credit score of 600 might affect your chance of eligibility. Since credit scores serve as a testament to your repayment behaviors, lower ratings could raise a red flag to issuers. They’re more likely to push for a personal guarantee to mitigate the risk.