Becoming Self Employed: Taking the First Steps

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Starting your own business can be an attractive concept, especially when you can utilise your skills and work from home, giving you the ultimate in convenience. Regardless of what your new venture is, there will be various steps that you will be required to take to ensure that your plans are optimised to the best they can be. From choosing the right business insurance from Hiscox to thinking of a business name that will pack a punch, you need to plan every last detail – and if you’re planning on heading down the self-employed path, you only have you to rely on.

Choose your business wisely

You may have a flurry of ideas whizzing around your head and while many of these may be pipedreams, you need to establish which one is realistic for you. Make sure that the idea you have is something that suits who you are and what you’re passionate about and ensure that this new venture is well and truly set in your mind before you start planning further.

Insure yourself

Whether it’s adding your business to your home insurance if you’re working from home, or looking into public liability insurance if you’re providing a mobile service, you need to make sure that you’re covered. If, further down the line, you’re faced with prosecution or a compensation claim, you’re going to need that insurance to cover your back. With plenty of customer reviews on Hiscox insurance available, you can be sure that the cover you choose is right for you.

Plan, plan, plan

Even if you’re not planning on applying for financial help, a business plan is highly recommended – if only for your own good.

Plan what marketing strategies you’re going to implement and what platforms you’re going to use to spread the word about you and your service. Being self-employed is often about who you know and with plenty of networking facilities online, you can build your customer base in no time.

Don’t stress!

The last thing you need is for your head to be full of doubt and for you to have cold feet when taking these first steps. Taking the plunge and going for it is often the best policy and as long as you have the passion, you’ll succeed.

8 comments on “Becoming Self Employed: Taking the First Steps

  1. You will work for an SOB.

    [This is not a shot at Tim. You will do to yourself what you would never allow any other boss to do.]

  2. I’ve been self employed for much of my adult life. I’ve only been insured when absolutely required to do so by the client. When I moved onto other things, I dropped the insurance. Never needed it and when I paid it it was a cost I could do without. The likelihood of needing professional indemnity is so low as to be not worth the cost of insuring it – and, frankly, that cost was much higher than reality dictated due to the insurer not really understanding my business.

    So, yeah, go self employed – even taking Gamecock’s point into account – but give the insurers a pass.

  3. If you employ anyone, even just to answer the ‘phone while you are out on a job, you are required by law to have employers’ liability insurance and if you have any computers, business vehicles or business property you will need insurance cover for those: it’s not just PI cover that you need and some of it is a legal requirement.
    I am neither employed by Hiscox nor have any shares in them but I am convinced that they are a good quality insurer – their reputation is excellent. However there are also several other insurers providing business insurance so you may be able to find all the cover you need at a cheaper price elsewhere.
    N.B. If you want to work from home check that there are no restrictive covenants (or planning regulations) that would prevent you doing so – I should not be allowed to operate a knife-sharpening or motor repair business, for instance, from my home nor turn the front room into a dentist’s surgery but accountancy is specifically permitted (why? – I don’t know).

  4. john: Because accountants are less likely to have wild nitrous fueled orgies spilling out into the streets.

  5. John,

    I’m a sole trader, so don’r employ anyone, nor do I have business property. I have vehicle insurance because it is a legal requirement. if my client requires PI insurance, then I will comply. Otherwise, no, I don’t as the risks don’t warrant it. If I lose or break my computer, I’ll buy another one. Over the years, the money saved on premiums will mean I am quids in.

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