Brex Card for Startups review: No personal guarantee required

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In a Nutshell

The Brex Card for Startups is an excellent choice for startup founders who don’t want to put their personal credit and assets on the line: Unlike many business credit cards, the Brex Card for Startups doesn’t require a personal guarantee. But that’s because it’s actually a corporate card — only startups with at least $100,000 in the bank are eligible.

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Pros Cons
No personal guarantee required Startup must be a registered business with an employer identification number, or EIN
No impact on your personal credit Corporate bank account with a minimum of $100,000 required
Top-notch rewards Must pay balance in full every month
No annual fee
Can use it to build business credit

 

From our partner

Brex Card for Startups

From cardholders in the last year

See Details, Rates & Fees

7 things to know about the Brex Card for Startups

1. Only for registered businesses with plenty of funding

First of all, the Brex Card for Startups is a corporate credit card.

To qualify, your startup must have a corporate bank account with a minimum of $100,000 in funds. Your company must also register with the IRS to establish an employer identification number, or EIN, in the U.S.

This potential barrier to entry is one of the biggest drawbacks of the Brex Card for Startups. If your startup is in its early stages, you might not be registered or have this much capital yet. In that case, there are other credit cards for startups that could suit your business better.

Also, consumers, sole proprietors and other unregistered businesses aren’t eligible for the corporate card.

2. No personal guarantee required

The Brex Card for Startups doesn’t require a personal guarantee from the founder. This is something that is very hard to find.

This means that unlike many business credit cards, you don’t have the added risk of being held personally liable for repaying the money your startup spends if it goes out of business. You also won’t lose your security deposit if that happens, because Brex doesn’t require one.

This also means the card won’t have any impact on your personal credit.

Read more: Business credit cards and your personal credit

3. Perks and rewards tailored to startups

Cardholders can earn points for everyday spending in categories that are particularly suited to startups. 

With the Brex Card for Startups, you’ll earn …

  • Seven points for every $1 you spend on rideshares
  • Four points for every $1 spent on travel booked through Brex
  • Three points for every $1 spent on restaurants
  • Two points for every $1 spent on software subscriptions
  • One point for every $1 spent on everything else

These points can be redeemed for statement credits or for flights, hotels and Airbnb stays booked through Brex Travel.

And Brex also features discounts and credits for business services like Amazon Web Services, Google Ads and Salesforce Essentials.

It’s sort of like a small business coupon book.

4. No annual fee

The Brex Card for Startups doesn’t charge an annual fee.

If you’d like to include your business partners or workers as authorized users on the account, Brex will issue up to five employee cards for free. After that, you’ll be charged $5 per month for each additional card.

5. You can’t carry a balance

The Brex Card for Startups is a charge card.

Typically, credit cards allow you to carry a balance, but charge you interest on the amount you don’t pay each month.

But charge cards like the Brex Card for Startups require you to pay off your balance in full every month. This might explain the requirement to have $100,000 in the bank — it gives the card issuer some assurance that you’ll have the funds to cover what you spend on the card.

On the plus side, you won’t be hit with interest charges. And because the Brex Card for Startups automatically deducts your credit card payment from your bank account each month, you won’t pay any late fees, either.

6. Get the opportunity to build business credit

The Brex Card for Startups provides a great opportunity for your startup to build credit.

Your payment history will be reported to the business credit bureaus Experian Business and Dun & Bradstreet.

Because Brex automatically deducts the amount you spend on your credit card each month from your bank account, it’s a good chance to build a positive credit history of on-time payments.

The only thing you have to do is make sure you have enough money in your corporate bank account each month to cover your credit card payment.

How to build business credit

7. Don’t mix business with pleasure

The Brex Card for Startups is intended for business purchases, which means you’re not allowed to use the card for personal expenses.

Here’s a full breakdown of activities you can’t charge on the Brex Card for Startups.

Who this card is good for

The Brex Card for Startups is an excellent choice for startups with plenty of funding and founders who don’t want the added risk of a personal guarantee should the company go out of business.

Startups will enjoy the benefits of the rewards program. They’ll also have an opportunity to build business credit.

But it’s not intended for unregistered businesses or sole proprietors like many freelancers or gig economy workers.

Not sure this card is right for you? Consider these alternatives.

If the Brex Card for Startups isn’t a good fit for your company, check out one of these other business credit cards.