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Bank Accounts for Businesses in South Carolina

Do you own a South Carolina business? Are you looking to start one? There are a number of reasons why South Carolina is a great state to do business. And First Bank* is here to provide the bank accounts, tools and services you need to succeed.

The Palmetto State has several First Bank locations in Cheraw, Dillon, Florence and Latta. We offer a variety of business checking and savings accounts as well as a collection of financial services to help you better manage your business.

Find the First Bank location nearest you, and open a business bank account today.

First Bank Business Checking Accounts in South Carolina

We offer business checking accounts to fit the needs of any business, of any size. Compare the list below to choose the one that best works for your business.

  1. Business Essentials. WalletHub named this account one of the “Best Bank Accounts for Small Businesses” in 2014. Business Essentials is perfect for small businesses or self-employed individuals with small transaction volume.
  2. Business Interest. An upgrade from Business Essentials, this account comes with all the same basic features but allows you to accrue interest.
  3. Community Checking. The perfect account for nonprofit organization and community groups.
  4. Business Advantage. If you’re looking for a fundamental account that allows for higher transaction volume, Business Advantage may be right for you.
  5. Commercial Analysis. Larger businesses have bigger needs and might benefit from our Commercial Analysis. This option comes with custom programs for business needs on top of all the basic features of Business Essentials.

First Bank’s Business Savings Accounts in SC

Our collection of business checkings accounts is complemented by our three business savings accounts. Compare the three options in the list and table below.

  1. Business Savings. With no minimum balance required to start earning interest, our Business Savings account is perfect for small startups looking to find a foothold in the market.
  2. Money Market. More aggressive business owners might look to our Money Market option, which allows for six withdrawals every month free of any First Bank fees.
  3. Certificates of Deposit. Our FDIC-insured CDs typically come with a guaranteed, fixed interest rate to allow for a higher rate of return.

The Benefits of a Bank Account for SC Businesses

Why use a separate bank account for your business? It turns out, there are a number of very good reasons.

Taxes. Keeping your business and personal finances separate will allow you — and the IRS — to more easily distinguish your business costs from your personal expenses. Filing taxes on behalf of your business will be easier and you’ll have greater protection in the event of an audit.††

Personal asset protection. If a business is tied to a personal bank account, you could risk losing your personal assets too if the business is sued or faces outstanding debt. That could mean property, equity or even your life’s savings.

Why use a business account instead of just a regular personal account?

Customer satisfaction. Customers are given more payment options with a business account, and being able to receive payments will help keep your business afloat. Business accounts allow for debit and credit card transactions, mobile payments and other customer-friendly features that a personal account fails to offer.

Employee satisfaction. Business bank accounts allow for direct deposits and payroll processing, which can help keep your employees happy.

Brand. Customers don’t take a business as seriously when they’re asked to make a check out to your personal name or they can’t pay with a debit or credit card. A business bank account gives your company credibility and brand awareness.

Why use a business account if you are self-employed or have a very small business?

Borrowing power. A business bank account allows lenders to easily see your revenue flow and can help make your case for a loan approval when your business grows or expands.

Financial delegation. Small-business owners are often burdened with all financial responsibilities. With a business bank account, you can grant financial control to other employees with the peace of mind that your personal account is still safe.  

business woman in front of bakery

How to Start a Business in South Carolina

Before you open a business bank account, you’ll of course need to open the business itself. In South Carolina, that requires just a few simple steps.

  1. File paperwork with the South Carolina Secretary of State to register your business as either a corporation, LLC, sole proprietorship or DBA (see below for more information).
  2. Once the paperwork is approved, you’ll be given a tax ID number for your business from the IRS.
  3. If you have employees or are operating as a retailer, you will need to register with the South Carolina Department of Revenue.
  4. Obtain any necessary licenses or permits. South Carolina Business One Stop provides information on the licenses needed for various types of businesses.
  5. Check with your local town, city or county to see if there are any additional permits needed to operate within those limits.

What’s the difference between a corporation, LLC, sole proprietorship and DBA?

A corporation is a separate entity from its owners and includes shareholders, directors, officers and employees. The corporation structure is best for large businesses that wish to invest profits back into the company, seek venture capital funding or go public.

An LLC (Limited Liability Company) is often used by small businesses and limits the personal liability of the owners.

The sole proprietorship structure is used by self-employed individuals and also acts as the default structure for any business that has not yet declared otherwise. Unlike an LLC, the personal assets of a sole proprietorship can be held liable in the event of financial trouble.

A DBA (Doing Business As) is a way for sole proprietors to operate a business under a different name without having to create a formal legal entity.

Opening a Business Bank Account in South Carolina

Opening a business bank account in South Carolina, or any other state, will typically require a few basics.

  • You’ll often need to show proof of registration and all required licenses and permits.
  • Your’ll need to supply your tax ID number. This acts like a social security number for your business.
  • You’ll need to provide an address for your business. This can be your home address if you do not have a building or store location.
  • Most business bank accounts will require a minimum deposit to open.

South Carolina’s Business Landscape

According to Forbes, there are a multitude of reasons why the Palmetto State is a great place for business owners:

  • South Carolina is a right-to-work state.
  • The state has the second-lowest union membership in the country as a percentage of its workforce.
  • South Carolina has experienced the fifth-highest rate in the country of net migration into the state from 2011-2015.
  • Job growth in South Carolina increased 2.7% in 2015.
  • The cost of doing business in South Carolina is 0.1% below the national average.
  • In 2015, Forbes listed South Carolina no. 25 on its list of Best States for Business, including a no. 13 ranking for growth prospects.

There are already more than 1,200 international business firms in South Carolina, and industrial electricity rates there are 12% less than the national average.

Additionally, South Carolina has no state property tax, local income tax, inventory tax, wholesale tax, unitary tax on worldwide profits or sales tax on manufacturing equipment, materials for finished products or industrial power. Plus, there are tax credits for companies that create new jobs.

main street business

Beyond a Business Bank Account

All SC business ventures need more than just a bank account to ensure success. That’s why at First Bank, our business services extend well beyond just checking and savings accounts. We’re pleased to offer the tools businesses need to manage the finances of a business:

Debit and Credit Cards

A First Bank business debit or credit card keeps your finances in the palm of your hands. Many businesses require a lot of transactions and we make it quick and easy to make the purchases you need to keep your business moving. Buy supplies, take a client out to lunch or place an inventory order over the phone with ease.

Best of all, you can earn great rewards for doing so. Earn points for money spent on qualified purchases with your enrolled First Bank Debit Card with Rewards‡‡ or First Bank Credit Card with Rewards§§ and choose from a selection of gift cards, travel benefits, cash back, merchandise and more.

Each card comes complete with many benefits:

  • Zero liability for unauthorized purchases
  • Protection from employee misuse
  • Protection from fraudulent online use by registering your card with MasterCard SecureCode
  • A 26-day interest-free grace period for purchases as long as your balance is paid in full and on time
  • A year-end account summary for easy tax preparation and identification of spending patterns and trends
  • 24-hour support for lost or stolen cards and emergency card replacement or cash advances
  • Extensions of most manufacturer warranties when purchase is made with an eligible card and protection against items that are lost or stolen within 90 days of purchase date
  • Travel benefits that include coverage for damage or theft to rental vehicles, medical and legal referrals and recovery of the Value Added Taxes expense associated with foreign business travel

Payment Processing

Our software and equipment grants you and your customers greater flexibility in completing a transaction. We can supply your business with point-of-sale terminals along with wireless, mobile and integrated solutions.

Reconciliation and Reporting

Streamline your payment processing operations with a user-friendly, online management and reporting system.

Check Collection

Four levels of check processing protection and an electronic check recovery service helps business owners get paid quickly and easily, increase sales and safeguard financials.

Payroll Processing

Process direct deposits*** for your employees, manage your payroll and even file your taxes with our payroll processing system. You can even disperse Payroll Cards to employees who do not have a bank account.

Loans

Our business loans and credit lines††† provide the funds you need to start, grow or expand your business.

Open a Business Bank Account with First Bank of SC

At First Bank, we’re committed to helping businesses find the bank account and financial management tools they need to succeed. We take pride in being a community bank with the tools and services of a large institution.

Whether you’re starting a business for the first time, you’re an established entrepreneur or you’re in the process of expanding your business, we are here for you. Contact your local First Bank of South Carolina today to learn more about our bank accounts and how we can serve you.


*Member FDIC.

Money Market customers can make six (6) free withdrawals per month. For each excessive transaction during a statement cycle, there is a fee of $15. Federal regulations limit withdrawals of preauthorized transfers to six (6) per month, including checks, drafts, online transfers, telephone transfers and debit card purchases. You may conduct an unlimited number of withdrawals at the ATM, in person at a branch, or by mail when the check is mailed to you.

CDs are subject to penalty for early withdrawals prior to maturity date. Penalty will reduce earnings.

§While First Bank does not charge for mobile banking, your mobile carrier’s message and data rates may apply. The First Bank Digital Banking Apps are available for select mobile and tablet devices.

††First Bank and its representatives do not provide tax advice. Each business’ tax and financial situation is unique. Businesses should consult their tax advisor for advice and information concerning their particular situation.

‡‡Loans subject to credit approval. See our Terms and Conditions for complete details on our One Rewards Program. MasterCard, Debit MasterCard and the MasterCard brand marks are trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated.

§§See our Terms and Conditions for complete details on our One Rewards Program. Loans subject to credit approval.

***Direct deposit defined as external ACH credit. Transfers from other First Bank accounts or deposits made at a branch do not apply.

†††Loans subject to credit approval.

———

Sources:

South Carolina Department of Commerce: http://sccommerce.com/sc-advantage/pro-business-environment

South Carolina Department of Commerce: http://sccommerce.com/sc-advantage

Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/places/sc/

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