The Coronavirus outbreak has allowed many of us to reconsider our direction in life, whether through circumstances such as furlough or redundancy or because life has changed so much we have realised we don’t want to go back to the old ways.
For some, this new direction might mean a venture into starting their own business, whether continuing in their current profession as their own boss or turning a hobby or interest into an income.
The single most important step to take in starting your own business is to take the plunge and shift from thinking about it to actually taking the concrete actions needed to get it off the ground.
Many people think about starting their own business, but entrepreneurs are the people who have actually taken action.
To help you make the leap, we are offering a FREE 20-minute video call with a member of our specialist team.
Before anything else, you need to sit down and prepare a business plan. A business plan is fundamental to any successful business, providing a roadmap for its future direction.
Every business plan is different, but they will generally cover points including:
- Details of your products and services;
- Information setting out how your business will actually operate;
- Information about what you want to get out of the business;
- The form business will take – Limited Company, sole trader or partnership, etc;
- Cost and pricing information;
- Market research;
- Details of how you will market your products or services;
- Budgets; and
- Financial forecasts.
Experienced professional advice can be invaluable in creating an effective business plan, both in terms of the financial elements, but also in creating highly detailed and sophisticated plans that will give you an edge over your competitors.
Our team is experienced in helping entrepreneurs across a wide range of sectors to create business plans, including ensuring that the proposals are commercially effective and tax-efficient.
Banks, lenders and prospective investors will all expect you to have a robust business plan in place before they lend or invest.
If you want to trade as a Limited Company or a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) (or certain other less common legal structures) you will need to register with Companies House. Again we can help with this and put you in touch with trusted legal advisers who can ensure the legal agreements between shareholders (Shareholders’ Agreements and Articles of Association) meet your needs.
We will also introduce you to banking contacts in order to set up the appropriate accounts for your new business.
This will have been covered in your business plan, but once your business has been created as a legal entity it will be time to begin seeking investment or lending, unless you are in a position to self-fund your new venture.
Our team is highly experienced in advising on access to finance for start-ups.
Employing and paying staff can be a daunting prospect, with different rates of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) and National Living Wage (NLW) to contend with, as well as different tax rates and pension contributions.
Getting any of this wrong can attract steep penalties can break down relationships with staff, potentially jeopardising the future of a new business before it is properly of the ground.
Our payroll specialists can help you understand the true cost of employing staff before you take them on and ensure they are paid correctly on time and with the appropriate deductions made.
Depending on the legal vehicle you use to trade, whether you are a director and shareholder of that business, whether or not you employ staff and your annual turnover, there will be various taxes you will need to pay. For a limited company, this includes Corporation Tax, Employer National Insurance Contributions (NICs), VAT, Business Rates.
Meanwhile, you may have to submit a Self-Assessment Tax Return for the first time if you have moved from being an employee on a PAYE scheme to running your own business and receiving dividends.
Our team can help you plan your tax affairs as effectively as possible to ensure that you only pay the tax you are required to by law while remaining fully compliant.