Business credit reports and scores are constantly fluctuating, the amount of change will depend on the company and what industry you’re in. In order to stay on top of the changes and know what potential partners, suppliers, and creditors will see when they pull your report, it is important to monitor business credit.
Unlike personal credit, you are not legally entitled to an annual free copy of your business credit reports. So, the responsibility lies with you to purchase them. You are also not protected from erroneous information landing on the reports. In fact, it is quite common for business owners to find information about another company on their business credit. Anyone can view your business credit for a fee without your knowledge.
4 Steps to monitoring your business credit:
- Obtain the reports: You can purchase all three individually or buy a tri-merged report. Make sure that the report(s) you buy are detailed.
- Analyze each item: Check for errors, negative or fraudulent accounts, and review basic company data.
- Keep note of errors found: If you notice issues with your business credit, look back in your records and mark down which creditor may be reporting it. Circle all questionable information.
- Check back for changes on each report: Scores and indexes will fluctuate whenever your vendors submit data to the bureaus.
Tracking business credit is just as important as monitoring personal credit. One major difference is that your personal credit is protected by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) – there are few federal regulations that mandate how business credit information is reported. If you discover delinquent accounts or incorrect data while monitoring business credit, reach out to experts in the credit industry. They can help guide you on how to manage, understand, and restore each report.