Good luck Davyon
So I have decided to go sole trading. I think I like working for myself and have time for my family. I also got a company to use me as their field technician to do their jobs. Then I create my invoice and charge them I am thinking ways to get more companies to give me more jobs to do for them. Wish me luck with this business.
Last edited by IT_Master; 19th June 2009 at 05:28 PM.
Good luck Davyon
Word of mouth is the best advert you'll get, do a good job (and I'm sure you will) and schools will soon be talking about you and your cheap prices, exellent and prompt sevice. Do'nt take on work you ca'nt do or work you ain't got enough time to fit in. Keep at least 40% of your income back for tax NI and expences. Most of all enjoy it.
Hope it all works out for you.
Keep every receipt, from the obvious, such as petrol to the not so obvious, such as did you have to buy a sandwich for lunch? It's a legitimate expense to claim against your income tax. Likewise any tools you have to buy you can set against tax. In my experience registering for vat is a last resort, not because I'm suggesting you do anything illegal, but because there's such a mountain of paperwork to get through (there was in my day at least) you'll end up spending almost as much time on your vat receipts as actually earning money. If you get a receipt for something and the receipt doesn't specify what you purchased (very rare these days, I know) write on it what it was for asap. And if you can afford it hire an accountant.
Last edited by beeswax; 19th June 2009 at 06:20 PM. Reason: The manners of plank
I can highly recommend a few tools to make your life easier.
1. Kashflow.co.uk .. very easy to use accounts package and as it's SaaS you can access it from anywhere to sort an on the spot invoice if needs be.. It even reminds you when stuff is overdue with a quick email
2. zendesk.com .. simple, easy to use and staff can email you in a way that transmogrifies them to support tickets. Much easier than trying to mess with multiple emails.
Beyond that, be pro-active, not reactive.. Teachers are really bad at reporting problems. Find out who the hair trigger staff are who will report stuff gladly and get them on board. It will make your life a lot easier in terms of keeping them calmer (they see you respond) and you more in the loop about problems.
Oh and as per Ozzy... promise small, deliver big
If you need a spreadsheet I use to help me work out my costings to rates chargeable, let me know. It's saved me from undercutting my own costs and actually making enough to live on.
Awww...you guys are huge help. I have a copy of Sage 50 accounts which Im using to do my accounting and my wife plays the accountant; she works at a bank And yes I wont eat too much that I can chew. I only want to pay bills and support my family. The tools I need now is to advertise for £0. The other company that is working with me says that he will help out as mush as possible and Im thankful for that.
As I grow, ill tell my stories.
Good luck, and remember there's plenty of us on here who'll help you if we can.
You're very brave to go for it in the middle of a recession. It's always a learning curve and I wish you the best of luck.
Time is tough but with a mind set I guess someone can accomplish anything in this world. Money is everywhere and Im gonna find it.
The paperwork might be easier but doesn't a sole trader have unlimited liability? Hope you've got some professional indemnity insurance.
What about VAT or don't you have to worry about VAT registration until your turnover is in the 10s of 1000s?
As someone said this brave step at the best of times but doubly so in a recession but at least you've got one big customer lined up.
The only thing about VAT as I have found ,is that some schools and companies prefer to deal with a company that is VAT registered. The perception is that you have more "substance" and particularly with schools .. pay your taxes. The government has started to sit on schools regarding "contractors" and the possibility that they dont declare the income from the jobs they do ....
The paperworks not that bad, anyone with a calculator can work it out. You can voluntarily register without turning over the £68k ...
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