Tag: self employed


No longer a nation of shopkeepers?

Napoleon is often quoted as deriding Britain as ‘a nation of shopkeepers.’ In fact, the phrase was first used by the French Revolutionary, Bertrand Barère de Vieuzac in 1794 – and while the phrase may have been intended as an insult, there’s another side to the coin: hardworking, local, small-scale enterprises that served the community and provided jobs. 

But is that now coming to an end? 

According to analysis from Rest Less – which offers advice to older people – two years into the pandemic the UK has nearly 700,000 fewer self-employed people than at the peak in 2019. Two years ago there were 5m self-employed: that figure has now shrunk to 4.3m. 

It has to be said that changes to legislation have seen many previously self-employed contractors move to company payrolls, but that is still a significant drop. 

So has the UK lost its entrepreneurial spirit? Clearly a ‘nation of shopkeepers’ could now be interpreted as a nation of artisan bakers, web designers, photographers, hairdressers and a host of other professions. But the question remains: has the pandemic made people in the UK more security conscious – less willing to take the risk of ‘going it alone’?

The analysis from Rest Less shows that the number of self-employed workers fell across all age categories in the past two years, apart from those in their 70s and 80s. Interestingly, the 50-59 age group has more self-employed workers than any other age group. 

Stuart Lewis, founder of Rest Less, said, “The self-employed workforce has gone through a tumultuous couple of years [but] self-employment remains an attractive option for many workers in their 50s, 60s and beyond.” 

It is easy to see why younger people – with mortgages to pay and families to raise – will find the security of employment attractive in the current climate. It is also easy to see why self-employment is attractive later in life, especially if you have been offered an early retirement package. At that stage of life, perhaps the mortgage is paid off and the children have left home. 

Some of our more mature clients have gone down that route, now doing the job they were previously doing as an employee on a self-employed, consultancy basis. One thing we would stress though, is that going self-employed – at any stage in life – requires careful financial planning. There are clear implications for your pension and for taxation. There are questions around whether you trade on a self-employed basis or set up your own limited company. If you’ve taken a lump sum as part of a redundancy package, there may also be investment considerations. 

Moving from being employed to setting up your own business is a tremendous – and exciting – challenge. But it may represent a major change to your long-term financial planning goals. We are more than happy to talk through all the implications with any clients or potential clients who might be considering taking that step – whatever type of ‘shop’ you are planning to open…


Accounting periods for sole traders

If you are a sole trader or partner, you can choose not to prepare formal accounts, but you still need to prepare and keep records of income and expenditure over a set accounting period.

You must include this information on your self-assessment tax return, so that HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) can work out your tax.

The accounting period starts on the day you started trading or became a partner and can end on any date, called the accounting date, that suits your business. It then normally runs for 12 months from the last accounting date. Unless you start trading exactly 12 months from when you want your accounting period to end, your first few accounting periods may be shorter or longer than 12 months. For example, if you started trading on 1 March, you may decide to have your first accounts made up over seven months to 30 September, and then 12 monthly thereafter.

However, your tax will normally be based on the profits and allowances for a 12-month basis period, even if your accounting period is shorter or longer than 12 months. Many businesses therefore find it easiest to end their accounts on 5 April, in line with the end of the HMRC self-assessment year.

If you are a sole trader you can change your accounting date for tax purposes by notifying your tax inspector in your self assessment return. You will have to give reasons for the change. You will also need to send back your return by the required filing date. If it arrives late, HMRC will assess your tax on the previous basis period. A change of accounting date can result in you being taxed twice for the same period, due to an ‘overlap’ of basis periods. If this happens, you need to keep a record of the overlap period and profits and claim relief at a later date.

A partnership normally completes a partnership tax return for the accounting period ending in that tax year. If you change your accounting date so that more than one accounting period ends during the tax year, you must complete additional tax return pages for each accounting period. If a change of accounting date means that there is no accounting date for a partnership in a given tax year, the partnership will have to estimate its taxable profits for that year. If the estimate turns out to be too low, the partners could be charged interest.

If you want to find out more about Accounting Periods for your business, contact one of the team who will be happy to help – 01737 225665 or advice@conceptfp.com

Sources: www.hmrc.gov.uk

Financial Planner – Have you got what it takes?

Financial Planner
We have an exciting opportunity for an individual to progress their career in a ‘new model’ environment who wants to offer true financial planning to their clients.

This is an employed position with a basic salary and a 6 month probation period.

The Company
Concept Financial Planning was established with a desire to do things differently. Our two areas of focus are our Clients and our Advice. We have invested heavily in technology to enable us to deliver a consistent client experience and allow us to spend more time with our clients and less time on routine administrative tasks. Our business model is built around ISO22222 standards and we pride ourselves on delivering a service proposition we are very proud of and one which we believe is ready for the Retail Distribution Review.

The Role
• Qualified to Level 4 Diploma minimum
• Experience of working in a fee based environment
• Existing client bank
• Networking both face to face and through social media
• Full time role based in Reigate office
• Ability to work to ISO22222 standards and work towards the certification

The Individual
The successful candidate will need to have professional attitude with good interpersonal skills and a commercial approach to good quality business production.

Please email your CV in the first instance to advice@conceptfp.com.

Please visit our website for more information on our company here
Strictly NO AGENCIES please