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  • FIRST POST
    • Lauraadele18
    • By Lauraadele18 15th Sep 17, 7:00 PM
    • 4Posts
    • 0Thanks
    Lauraadele18
    Small bussiness absolute beginner
    • #1
    • 15th Sep 17, 7:00 PM
    Small bussiness absolute beginner 15th Sep 17 at 7:00 PM
    Hi im very kean to start a small selling online business only trouble is i dont want anyonr knowing its me so cant ask friends and i want to keep costs down as much as possible so can afford to pay for advice. Im hoping you lovely experts can help!

    Specifically about the accounts side of things and the inital set up.

    1. Do you need to apply for any licences when selling online products are just household items, nothing electrical, no alcohol, no food etc.
    2. I know i need to register my companu with gov but is it really that simple? What forms do i need to complete?
    3. Im thinking about registering my company as a limited company rather than a sole trader is there any additional costs for this
    4. Accounts is a big worry to me. I know other people do their own accounts and i knoe i would be able to do it but i dont know what i need to record ready for when i do have ro file my accounts at the end of the year. Does anyone have a blank document they have to fill out at the end of the year they can share?
    5. Is accounts harder or easier to do or the same if i have a limited company or sole trader
    6. Will my financial year start from the date inregister my business and accounts submitted next Septemebr or the end of March?

    Sorry for all the questions but the more i read online, the more i get confused!

    Thanks all xx
Page 1
    • fishybusiness
    • By fishybusiness 15th Sep 17, 10:16 PM
    • 1,128 Posts
    • 698 Thanks
    fishybusiness
    • #2
    • 15th Sep 17, 10:16 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Sep 17, 10:16 PM
    What is your USP?
    • Pennywise
    • By Pennywise 16th Sep 17, 6:38 AM
    • 9,326 Posts
    • 16,930 Thanks
    Pennywise
    • #3
    • 16th Sep 17, 6:38 AM
    • #3
    • 16th Sep 17, 6:38 AM
    i dont want anyonr knowing its me
    Originally posted by Lauraadele18
    Fallen at the first hurdle. The law requires your website to show your name and address if a sole trader, or company name, number and address if a limited company. Anyone can easily find names and addresses of director/shareholder of a limited company by a few clicks of the companies house website. The law simply doesn't allow for a business owner to hide their identity. Why is it a problem for you?
    • ThemeOne
    • By ThemeOne 16th Sep 17, 7:36 AM
    • 1,118 Posts
    • 925 Thanks
    ThemeOne
    • #4
    • 16th Sep 17, 7:36 AM
    • #4
    • 16th Sep 17, 7:36 AM
    I would just give it a go as a sole trader initially, to see if it works out.

    If it does, then you could think about setting up a limited company. Company accounts are a little different, but not really difficult, and HMRC provides lots of examples and help.

    Whether you're sole trader or limited, as long as you keep proper records of all incomings and outgoings you should be OK.

    If you set up the limited company yourself, the costs are almost zero, though it does involve a bit of a leg work. Alternatively you can buy ready-made companies online - not sure of prices these days, but remember paying £75 in the dim and distant past.
    • soolin
    • By soolin 16th Sep 17, 8:57 AM
    • 59,471 Posts
    • 42,177 Thanks
    soolin
    • #5
    • 16th Sep 17, 8:57 AM
    • #5
    • 16th Sep 17, 8:57 AM
    I'm a sole trader and sell mainly online. I have no company name nor am I registered anywhere apart from with HMRC to whom I pay tax and National Insurance.

    However, as above, by law I am obliged to provide my geographic address and contact details on all sale pages- or have it available within a few clicks.
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
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    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 16th Sep 17, 9:55 AM
    • 5,352 Posts
    • 4,695 Thanks
    00ec25
    • #6
    • 16th Sep 17, 9:55 AM
    • #6
    • 16th Sep 17, 9:55 AM
    Hi im very kean to start a small selling online business only trouble is i dont want anyonr knowing its me so cant ask friends and i want to keep costs down as much as possible so can afford to pay for advice. Im hoping you lovely experts can help!

    Specifically about the accounts side of things and the inital set up.

    1. Do you need to apply for any licences when selling online products are just household items, nothing electrical, no alcohol, no food etc.
    2. I know i need to register my companu with gov but is it really that simple? What forms do i need to complete? see below
    3. Im thinking about registering my company as a limited company rather than a sole trader is there any additional costs for this see below
    4. Accounts is a big worry to me. I know other people do their own accounts and i knoe i would be able to do it but i dont know what i need to record ready for when i do have ro file my accounts at the end of the year. Does anyone have a blank document they have to fill out at the end of the year they can share? blimey
    5. Is accounts harder or easier to do or the same if i have a limited company or sole trader
    6. Will my financial year start from the date inregister my business and accounts submitted next Septemebr or the end of March?

    Sorry for all the questions but the more i read online, the more i get confused! then it is unlikely you are going to learn what you need to know without "proper" help

    Thanks all xx
    Originally posted by Lauraadele18
    the second hurdle you have fallen at is failing to understand what a "company" is

    you can call yourself Lauraadele18 & Co if you want, but that has no legal meaning, and in your dealings with customers and HMRC etc you will simply be a sole trader who just so happens to be using a "fancy" name for your business. For tax purposes all your business dealings will end up on your personal income tax return

    if you set up a Limited Company then that is a separate legal entity from you and must be registered with Companies House. That then brings a host of extra regulations you must comply with including submitting properly prepared accounts and paying corporation tax. Any money you take out of the company for your own use will then be taxed on your own personal income tax return

    as you have no idea what a set of accounts looks like I very much doubt you can do this yourself, get help from an accountant or at least someone who is already a sole trader and understands how things work
    Last edited by 00ec25; 16-09-2017 at 1:15 PM.
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 16th Sep 17, 10:19 AM
    • 60,693 Posts
    • 354,814 Thanks
    PasturesNew
    • #7
    • 16th Sep 17, 10:19 AM
    • #7
    • 16th Sep 17, 10:19 AM
    There are more goods than electrical/alcohol which have special limitations and regulations on selling them.

    Household items could, say, be furnishings, which might have special fire safety labelling/testing required; candles need to be registered/tested; made beauty products need to be tested; even food/sweet repackaging has requirements. Then there are lighters, knives, aerosols/gases.....

    So make sure you understand all the laws surrounding anything you are planning on selling/reselling.
    • Pennywise
    • By Pennywise 16th Sep 17, 12:21 PM
    • 9,326 Posts
    • 16,930 Thanks
    Pennywise
    • #8
    • 16th Sep 17, 12:21 PM
    • #8
    • 16th Sep 17, 12:21 PM
    Luckily, these days, all the information you need is just a click away via Google. Before the internet, starting a business required hours of reading in libraries or paying for a variety of professionals. But, you do have to do the research yourself if you decide not pay for professional help. The onus is very much on you to get things right, and you're the only who pays the fines, penalties, costs, of doing things wrong.

    Accounts and tax returns for example. Yes, anyone "can" do their own. But if they make mistakes, miss a deadline, they could face hefty penalties. If they plan their affairs wrongly, they could end up missing a few tax planning techniques meaning they pay more tax than they'd have needed to.
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