Shelly Ellis, regional managing partner at J. Galt Financial Suite, recently joined TechTown Detroit’s Professional Services Network and will volunteer her time through our Ask an Expert program. Here, she shares how she empowers small businesses through strategic credit management.
Navigating Detroit’s entrepreneurial landscape can be challenging, especially when it comes to finding the right sources of funding. Financial industry experts like Shelly Ellis stand as a lighthouse that guides entrepreneurs through the complexities of navigating credit. Inspired by her father’s entrepreneurial journey and the challenges he faced with personal credit mistakes, Ellis has dedicated her expertise to empowering business owners with the knowledge and strategies to establish and effectively leverage business credit. We are happy that she has joined our Professional Services Network and is now available for free consultations through our Ask an Expert program.
Championing small businesses
Ellis’s passion for helping small businesses stems from her own family’s experiences. “My father had really good personal credit, but he cosigned a lot of loans and even after the businesses were closed, he spent decades trying to pay those loans off so he wouldn’t ruin his personal credit,” she says. “That is where my passion started — wanting to learn more about business credit.”
In the past, Ellis worked as a mortgage loan officer and soon discovered that many of her clients were also small business owners. Once she realized her clients didn’t have a lot of knowledge of business credit, she knew she could use her skills to support the business community.
With over a decade of experience as a senior mortgage underwriter at United Wholesale Mortgage, a Pontiac-based wholesale mortgage lender, Ellis brings a wealth of financial expertise to her role as a regional managing partner at J. Galt Financial Suite, an Indiana-based financial services company. She emphasizes the importance of proactive credit building. “Don’t wait until you need credit to start building it,” Ellis adds.
Also, Ellis advises small and midsize businesses to adopt sustainable practices. She cautions businesses to avoid overextending themselves and to “manage cash flow diligently and understand the true value of your business.”
Ellis is a champion for small businesses, providing them with the tools and insights to leverage credit strategically, ensuring their financial resilience and paving the path for their long-term success.
Shelly Ellis’s top three tips for establishing business credit:
- Structure your business properly: Form a legal entity, such as an LLC, S corp or C corp, to separate your personal and business finances.
- Register with business credit bureaus: Get your business registered with Dun & Bradstreet, Equifax and Experian to ensure your credit history is tracked.
- Utilize business credit products: Apply for business credit cards and lines of credit, making timely payments to build a positive credit history.
Shelly Ellis is a volunteer member of TechTown Detroit’s Professional Services Network. If you’re seeking specialized accounting and finance support for your business, book a free, 25-minute Ask an Expert appointment with Ellis today!