Best Small Business Credit Cards for Home Tutors

Best Credit Cards for Home Tutors

Moving your expenses to a small business credit card is one of the best ways for your company to start getting more out of every dollar spent. Depending on the size and scale of your home tutoring business, a different type of card may fit your situation better than another.

We’ll cover the top small business credit cards for home tutors, how to qualify for the card you want, and why a credit card makes sense for you and your company.


TOP SMALL BUSINESS CREDIT CARDS FOR HOME TUTORS

Depending on your business’s expenses and cash flow, you should be able to use the different reward systems strategically to maximize the benefit to your bottom line.

Note: In most cases, small business credit card applications are based on your personal credit score. Be sure to know if you qualify before you apply for a new card.

These are the top three cards available right now for home tutors. If you know your credit isn't stellar, check out our Top 4 Cards For Building Credit.

Office Supply Rewards


Operating a successful home tutoring business means that you likely go through a lot of office supplies each month. With an office supply rewards card, you can get a higher rate of cash back on all of your office supply purchases. Use your card to buy paper, pens, inkjet cartridges, and notebooks. The more that you spend on the card each month, the more cash back rewards you’ll earn.

Additionally, many office supply rewards card lenders extend their cash back rates to cover other common purchases like phone and internet services. So, depending on your needs, an office supply rewards card could help you to maximize your monthly cash back earnings.

#1 Office Supply Purchasing Reward Small Business Credit Card

CHASE INK BUSINESS CASH

Ideal for: Businesses that don’t need a high spending limit and are looking for a robust rewards program.

You can earn 5% cash back, with a limit of $25,000 each membership year—not just on purchases at office supply stores, but also on internet, cable, and phone services.

Also note that you can redeem earnings for cash back, gift cards, and other rewards through Chase Ultimate Rewards. This program is an incredible value because it allows you to transfer points to a wide range of partners—so many, in fact, that it can become overwhelming to figure out the best way to redeem your points. But what a problem to have.

REWARDS AND BENEFITS (TERMS APPLY)

  • Sign-up bonus of $500 cash after spending $3,000 in purchases in the first three months after opening your account
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for the first 12 months
  • 5% cash back on office supplies, internet, cable, and phone service up to $25,000 per year, then 1%
  • 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants up to $25,000 per year, then 1%
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Employee cards at no additional charge

FEES

  • No annual fee
  • 3% foreign transaction fee
  • 5% or $5 balance transfer fee (whichever is greater per transaction)
  • 5% or $15 cash advance fee (whichever is greater per transaction)

Gas Rewards


Traveling around to meet with your tutoring clients likely means that your business spends a substantial amount of money on fuel each month. A gas rewards card can help you recoup some of your fuel costs by offering a higher rate of cash back for gas purchases when compared to the rewards you’d get with a standard cash back card.

Keep in mind that some gas rewards cards only offer benefits at certain gas stations. So, you’ll need to make sure that eligible stations are convenient to use on your daily route. If you can’t easily use your gas rewards card each day, you may be better off getting a standard cash back card instead.

#1 Gas Reward Small Business Credit Card

AMERICAN EXPRESS SIMPLYCASH PLUS

Ideal for: Business owners who don’t travel overseas but have sizable fuel, cellular, and office supply expenses, and who would appreciate the ability to occasionally spend over their limit.

This card also offers 3% cash back on a category of your choice, including gas stations, for the first $50,000 per year. After hitting this limit, the cash back falls back down to 1%.

This card’s 0% intro APR offer lasts nine months, and American Express issues all cash back rewards as a statement credit—two key factors you should consider as you decide which card is best for your business. Finally, this card carries a 2.7% foreign transaction fee, making it a costly choice if you have a lot of international expenses.

REWARDS AND BENEFITS (TERMS APPLY)

  • 0% intro APR on purchases for the first 9 months after opening an account
  • 5% cash back at U.S. office supply stores and U.S. wireless telephone services, up to $50,000 per year (then 1% afterward)
  • 3% cash back on a category of your choice (e.g., U.S.-based gas stations, restaurants, shipping services), up to $50,000 per year (then 1% afterward)
  • 1% cash back on other purchases
  • Ability to buy over your credit limit

FEES

  • No annual fee
  • No balance transfer fee
  • No cash advance fee
  • 2.7% foreign transaction fee

0% Introductory Rate


There are probably a few big purchases that you could make for your business that would greatly help boost your revenue. A credit card with a 0% APR introductory period can help you make big-ticket purchases for your home tutoring business now, and then, after you build up more revenue, you can pay the card balance off before interest accrues.

Every 0% APR credit card has an introductory period during which all purchases are interest free. This period usually lasts for 12 months, but it can vary depending on the card. So, pay close attention to when your intro period expires to avoid paying interest charges on your big purchases.

#1 Business Financing Reward Small Business Credit Card

AMERICAN EXPRESS BLUE BUSINESS PLUS

Ideal for: New business owners, and those with irregular cash flow, who don’t travel overseas.

This card’s 0% intro APR offer lasts 12 months, one of the longest on this list. That makes it an ideal card for brand-new businesses and those whose cash flow is temporarily unpredictable.

What is predictable: If you use this card overseas, you’ll pay an extra 2.7% foreign transaction fee, which is a surcharge if your purchase passes through a foreign bank. Unlike, say, annual fees that are often offset with upgraded rewards and benefits, you get nothing but the fee for your trouble. If you travel out of the country for business, this isn’t the card you should use.

REWARDS AND BENEFITS (TERMS APPLY)

  • 0% intro APR for 12 months
  • 2x points per dollar spent on the first $50,000 of every calendar year
  • 2x points on business purchases like office supplies and client dinners
  • 1x point per dollar spent after that
  • Spend Manager: American Express mobile app. Helps add receipts and notes to transactions
  • Get up to 99 employee cards for free
  • Spend beyond your credit limit
  • Exclusive access to ticket pre-sales and cardmember-only events in your city
  • Complimentary ShopRunner membership: Provides two-day shipping at participating retailers
  • American Express personal loans: Apply for a pre-approved loan of $3,500 to $25,000
  • Access to Quickbooks to label and transfer your transaction data from American Express

FEES

  • No annual fee
  • No cash advance fee
  • 3% or $5 balance transfer fee (whichever is greater per transaction)
  • 2.7% foreign transaction fee

Cards For Multiple Uses


Most businesses start with one card that fits their largest need and transfer most or all of their expenses to that card. Once you get to a certain size, however, it may make sense to have different cards with specific rewards programs catering to the different types of expenses you have. Most larger businesses use multiple cards to optimize for rewards.

Remember, you aren't limited to just one credit card, just be careful not to overextend yourself for unnecessary purposes.

How to Qualify for Small Business Credit Cards

Unless your business has a positive credit history of its own, your eligibility will be based on your personal credit rating. If you have a new or existing business that has never had a credit card or loan before, it’s likely that your business has no credit history.

Since your personal credit will be measured when you apply for a business credit card, it’s wise to have a good idea of what your credit score is.

If you don’t know your credit score, check out our article: How To Find Your Credit Score.

Once you have your score you can make a decision on which card to apply for. If you have good, great, or excellent credit, then go for one of the cards at the top of this article! If your credit isn’t quite there yet, check out our article: What Business Credit Card Can I Get With My Credit Score?

The great thing about credit scores is that they can be improved over time! We have a great article on the Best Business Credit Cards To Build Credit.

A rejected credit application can have a negative effect on your credit score, so act with responsibility and make careful decisions when deciding to apply.

Qualifying for a Small Business Credit Card


It’s important to note that if your business doesn’t have any credit history of its own, your eligibility for these cards will be based on your personal credit score.

The card above is for eligible people with a good to excellent credit rating, generally a score of 660 or higher.

If you don’t know what your credit score is, visit our article on how to find your credit score.

If you do know your credit score, but it’s not quite high enough for these cards yet, check out our article on the best small business credit cards for building credit.

A rejected credit application can have a negative effect on your credit score, so act with responsibility and make careful decisions when deciding to apply.

Why You Should Get A Small Business Credit Card

There are many reasons why a company would want to have a business credit card. Depending on the type of business you operate, the strategies you employ may be different than one another, but we will describe the basic benefits of small business credit cards.

Separates Personal And Business Expenses


No matter the size of your company, you should keep all of your business finances separate from your personal finances. This means paying any bills you have in the business from a business account and paying for all personal expenses from a personal account.

This separation accomplishes two main tasks:

  • Simplified Accounting - Keeping your accounts separate will allow you to fully understand the numbers of your business. If you have personal dollars in a business bank account or vice versa, it will be more difficult to understand how much you are spending, how much your revenue is, and therefore, your bottom line.
  • Prevents Commingling - Commingling funds is one of the most basic and damaging errors a small business can make. Separating your funds, along with operating your business in a structure such as an LLC, will create your corporate veil. A corporate veil works to keep your personal assets safe if your business is ever sued.

There should never be a reason to mix your business and personal money, even if you run a small sole-proprietorship. The risks are too great, and there are no benefits.

Before you get a small business credit card, if you haven’t opened a business checking account for your company, you should do that right now.

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Recommended: Get $200 when you open a business checking account with Chase. Read our full review.

Smooths Inconsistent Cash Flow


Some businesses, such as those with long sales cycles, can often go a few months without revenue, then see a large spike when a sale is finalized.

While it’s exciting to see large numbers come in all at once, it can be stressful in the meantime to pay bills, salaries, and other expenses with little to no income.

Credit cards offer business owners the ability to spend money that they haven’t made yet, capitalizing on future sales right now.

While you absolutely need to be careful about spending money you don’t have, this is a method that businesses can use to keep the doors open between sales cycles.

Credit Card Rewards


There are two main types of business credit card rewards: cash back and travel rewards.

Cash Back Rewards

There are multiple ways a small business can get the most out of cash back rewards programs.

For each dollar that your small business spends with these credit cards, you can get some money back. Some cards even have higher rates for specific purchases.

For example, businesses that do a lot of road travel can maximize their driving costs with a card that offers cash back on gas purchases.

Other businesses may require a lot of office supplies and can find a cash back or points program that rewards them for these costs or others like telecommunications, advertising, shipping, and more.

Finally, most cash back cards offer a flat percentage rate back on general purchases.

Travel Rewards

On the other hand, businesses that fly to visit conferences, do on-site visits with clients, or any other activities that usually involve airline trips or hotel stays can benefit from general or brand-specific travel rewards.

These usually come in the form of points or mileage rewards, where for every dollar you spend, miles you fly, nights you stay, or any other qualifying action you take, you’ll get rewarded. These build up and can be spent on upgrades, free nights and flights, and more.

Finally, there are typically premium versions of these cards that cost more in terms of annual fees but have more luxurious rewards such as access to airport lounges, events, and activities most people wouldn’t have access to.

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