By Jason Steele –
It seems like America has gone crazy with fees. It’s now standard practice in most industries to quote prices that fail to include several mandatory extra charges, often intermingled with government imposed taxes. But in the credit card industry, fees are actually under strict government control. All fees must be clearly disclosed in advance, and card issuers aren’t even allowed to use the fine print.
This makes it easy to avoid most fees when it comes to choosing a business credit card. Here are six business credit card fees you should always avoid:
1. Foreign Transaction Fees
Sometimes, it’s necessary to pay a business credit card fee in order to receive a valuable service. However, many credit cards impose a 3% foreign transaction fee on all charges processed outside of the United States. This means that you could face this charge when making purchases from a foreign supplier, even if the transaction is in U.S. Dollars. Thankfully, there are many small business cards with no foreign transaction fees. For example, all Capital One cards, including the Spark small business cards, have no foreign transaction fees. (more…)
By Jason Steele –
Did you know that there’s a right way and a wrong way to close your small business credit card? If you do it the wrong way, you could miss out on rewards and benefits, and possibly even incur late fees and interest payments. Use these steps to make sure that you close your credit card account the right way.
Consider Alternatives to Closing Your Account
There are some good reasons why you may wish to close your small business credit card account, but many of them can be addressed by your card issuer. The market for small business credit cards is extremely competitive, and card issuers are willing to go to great lengths to retain existing their customers. For example, if you are closing your account because the annual fee is too high, and you let your card issuer know, then it may waive your annual fee to keep your business. Likewise, if the standard interest rate is not competitive, then your card issuer might be able to offer you a lower rate.
And even if you aren’t satisfied with your card’s rewards and benefits, you can actually have your existing account converted to a different card offered by the same issuer, without having to close your account or apply for a new card. This is called a product change, and your existing account information and balance will be retained, while having the rewards, features and benefits of a different card. (more…)
By Eric Rosenberg –
Business ideas come easy to some, but what happens when you have a good idea but no money to get started? Countless entrepreneurs have run into funding challenges when looking to found and build a new business. Here are ten ideas to get you started when looking to get money for your business.
1. Personal Savings
The first place to look for capital when starting a new business is your own bank account. If you are smart with your personal finances and keep good habits, you should have an emergency fund and retirement savings, but you should avoid tapping into those whenever possible.
Instead, try to draw on your own cash and stretch it as far as possible. “Bootstrapping” is a term commonly used to describe starting a business in such a manner. Succeeding in a bootstrapped business generally requires you to be very thrifty and tight with the budget, but at the end you could come out as the sole owner of a debt free, successful business. That’s the best possible scenario for you as a new business founder. (more…)
By Constance Brinkley-Badgett –
If you’re like many small business owners, you’ve taken on some debt in order to cover the costs of starting or growing your business. According to the Federal Reserve’s latest figures in the 2016 Small Business Credit Survey, 64% of loan applicants sought funds for a new business opportunity or to expand an existing one.
Whether you applied for a small business loan, used business credit cards or even sought out investors, you needed that initial cash infusion to get your business off the ground or to the next level. But what happens with that debt should your business hit a slow period?
While paying back that debt may be going well for you now, it can be wise to consider how you’ll continue making those payments should sales go down and those debt repayments become uncomfortable. If you’d like to get your debt out of the way faster and save money at the same time, debt consolidation could be worth considering. (more…)
Former Congressman Chris Chocola once said that one of the earliest lessons he learned in business is that balance sheets and income statements are fiction, and cash flow is the true reality.
Investopedia defines “cash flow” as the net amount of cash that moves in and out of a business. Cash flow is positive when liquid assets are increasing and negative when they are decreasing. There are only two main ways to increase your cash flow, and that is to bring more revenue in (increase sales) and/or to keep less revenue from going out (decrease your expenses). For this article, I will expand upon both concepts further.
Bringing In More Revenue
There are a variety of ways you can increase your revenue, and what makes you a strategic business owner (with a thriving enterprise) is the fact that you’ve developed your own secret sauce (business plan) to do so. Some ideas to bring in more revenue include, but are not limited to, the following: (more…)