Posts tagged: business loans

What’s a Limited Company and How Do I Start One?

building businessWhen you are starting up a new business there are a number of different ways you can set it up – one of these options is to create a Limited Company – this creates a business which is entirely separate from you and your personal finances.

1. What is a Limited Company?

The company has its own business name and its own separate identify. You need a business bank account and the business can make profits or loss. It can pay taxes and have debt, of its own, all separate from you as the business owner.

You have to have a company bank account – it can’t be in your name – and all money earned by the company have to go into the company bank account but this is relatively simple to set up.

It is important to understand that the company is separate from you as a person – if you want to have more control and be more involved then it might be better to set up as a sole trader – when you and the business are one and the same.

2. How to set up a Limited Company

The first thing you need to do is choose your company name, and then decide where it will be based. You also need to decide who will be within your company as well. Once you have all that decided you need to think about shares – if you have more than one of you owning the company you will need to decide what percentage you each own. Find out exactly how to set up a limited company in this step by step guide from Crunch.

3. Shareholders

You are able to add shareholders to the company but you should seek professional advice on this side of things as there can be tax implications.

4. Register with Companies House

Once you have decided on everything, you need to go to Companies House website and register your company for a low fee. You can do the whole process online. They will check if any other businesses have the same name as you and will ask who your company director and company secretary are.

It is often possible to do this through an accountancy firm. You need to be aware that being a company director comes with legal responsibilities.

5. A Memorandum of Association

Companies House also require you to file a Memorandum of Association which outlines why the company was set up and how it will be run. It can be used in tax issues or legal proceedings so make sure it is drafted correctly. You can write it but keep it as simple as possible in that case.

6. Consider professional advice

While the process is simple, if you get it wrong it could cause problems further down the line so you might want to consider getting expert help from your accountant or from a company set up specialist. There will likely be a fee involved but it will be worth it to get everything right from the start.

7. Working with your accountant

An accountant will often provide the support to set up your company for free as long as they then continue to work with you to deliver your payroll and taxes and support your business on an ongoing basis. It is definitely worth looking into for all of the help and support which you will get for your business from day one.

8. The business bank account

You don’t necessarily need a High Street bank for your business bank account but there are plenty of other options out there which can be set up quickly to help your business get off the ground without delay.

9. HMRC help and guidance

As a new business owner you need to understand your expenses and tax obligations as well as VAT potentially so it’s worth checking the HMRC website as they have a lot of information and advice for business owners.

They also run regular webinars and advice sessions on all kinds of tax-related business issues so check out everything on there to make sure you register with them for tax and if you need to register for VAT etc..

Again, it’s better to make sure you get everything set up from day one, correctly, so that your business starts from a positive footing. If you have any questions or doubts about business taxes you can also seek help from your accountant.

Setting up a Limited Company is a fairly straightforward process but it’s important to work out if this is the best route for you by looking at all the options first. If you do decide it’s what you want to do, then seek professional advice, from you accountant, before starting out so that you make sure everything is done correctly right from the start for your new business, giving it a good foundation.

Making Passive Income From Running a Blog

earning from blogsA blog is a collection of written entries that are posted on a website. There are a variety of ways to keep a blog. Some use the medium like a personal diary to talk about their daily activities while others present information like a newspaper. The point of blogging is creating content for visitors to read.

Typically, blogging is a hobby, but it can also be used to make money.

Making Income from Blogging

The amount of money an individual can make from blogging varies widely. Many barely make enough money to cover the basic expenses of running the website, while others make $1 million or more. While there are no guarantees, there are numerous benefits to having a passive income stream.

The main factor to success is the amount of traffic coming into the website. If a person makes one to 10 cents per page view, it can add up to an extra $500 to $5,000 every 30 days. Results from a survey conducted by the Problogger site indicated that 10 percent of those with income blogs made no money at all, 53 percent made less than $100 monthly, 13 percent brought in $1,000, and four percent made five figures or more. This adds up to serious money.

Income Sources

Individuals can make a passive income directly by blogging and also by taking advantage of opportunities that come their way through the website. The following describes several approaches to setting up a steady money stream.

• Advertising. This is the most common method of making money from blogging. Display ads are used in the sidebar or as a banner at the top of the page to quickly catch the eyes of visitors. They can also be placed in emails and newsletters. Direct ads are paid for by companies that are seeking prominent placement on busy websites. Contextual ads are provided by a management company such as Adsense or Mediavine and are based on a cost-per-impression or a cost-per-click model.

• Brand partnerships. Bloggers with a large following are considered to be influencers, which companies and brands can associate with to their benefit. This association consists of mentions and referrals in blog posts along with clothing, gadgets and other promotional items.

• Sponsored posts. Also known as content marketing, this is a method of creating and sharing blog posts, videos and social media messages in order to improve a company’s influence and Google ranking. The businesses will often pay well to have their content posted on influential blogs. This can range from $50 to several thousand dollars.

• Affiliate marketing. This marketing approach involves the blogger recommending certain services and products on their site in exchange for a commission. Companies and brands know that popular bloggers have a loyal audience that trusts what they say and will check out products based on that alone. This costs the readers nothing and can be very lucrative for the business and the blogger.

• Selling products. One of the most straightforward ways to making money from a blog is through the sale of products. This can be for physical items such as clothing, books and jewelry or digital items like courses, premium content and memberships.

• Selling services. Being a blogger increases a person’s visibility and helps them to become an expert in their field or interest. This can lead to offering paid services like making speeches, being a coach or performing another skilled service. Being good at something will also encourage other people to make an investment in the blogger and the services being offered.

How to Start a Blog

Those with little to no experience running a blog should start with a hosted service like Blogger. Aside from being free, it also features beautiful templates and the ability to connect a custom domain. Setting up a self-hosted WordPress site is also an option. This requires buying hosting and a domain name, both of which are low cost to start out.

Making a Blog Successful

This is the hard part. A person cannot just put up random content on a blog and expect to be an overnight sensation, bringing in large amounts of money. It takes time and dedication to build readership, gain trust and to fully understand how to run a blog like a business. The following tips will help:

• Find a niche. Focusing on a specific passion will bring in the right audience and make it easier to target advertising later on. It is best to choose something that already has a strong interest to avoid getting lost in the crowd.

• Be consistent. Posting fresh content on a consistent basis will keep the readership and show that the blogger is dedicated to what they are doing. In addition, keeping content up to date improves the Google ranking for the blog.

• Promote content. A blogger can be the most amazing and interesting writer in the world, but it is a wasted effort if no one knows about the site. Networking with other bloggers and using social media to promote posts will quickly get the word out.

Is Blogging Worth the Effort?

The majority of blogs die before they are one year old. This happens mainly because the person did not want to put in the effort to build up readership and work toward passive income. Having a successful blog that makes money is hard work in the beginning that pays off well later on. It also depends on what the person is looking to get out of the experience. Whether it is to supplement an existing income or act as a standalone business, having a plan before starting out will help the blogger push past early discouragement and understand that it is all part of a process.

Another consideration is the relationships, both personal and professional, that are built through blogging. Someone with a family will gain the flexibility to spend more time with their spouse and children. These factors do not have a monetary value.

In today’s digital economy, a passive-income blog fits right in to most lifestyles and can provide a better quality of life for both the blogger and everyone around them.

Kelsey is the editor at LuxAuthority and is trying to balance both her budget and her credit card balance. She likes to live lavish and treat herself when the opportunity allows it. She loves the newest tech, old cars and the smell of rich mahogany and leather bound books as well!

5 Financial Resolutions For Freelancers

financial azanda for freelancersFreelancing is becoming an increasingly popular way for people to make a living. With the freedom to choose your own hours, who you work with and a bigger share of the profits – what’s not to love?

Many freelancers find themselves struggling to manage their finances, with bad habits that can be hard to break. Want to take control of your self-employed earnings? Here are five new year financial resolutions for freelancers.

1. Prove you’re a professional with a business account

A business account may seem like something that’s unnecessary unless you’re earning the big bucks, but even freelancers on a small income can benefit from having a business account. There are many reasons why you need a separate account for your side job or freelance business, but mostly it will make your life easier. Make it easier to manage your finances by being a professional with your business.

2. You will start keeping better track of invoices and payments

Your earnings can be unpredictable as a freelancer, and while the majority of your clients will pay you on time, there’s always the danger that some will be late with their payments or worse – not pay you at all. Start working out a good cash flow system that helps keep you out of trouble and allows you to manage your income and outgoings better. Get on top of when payments are due and start imposing penalties on those who don’t pay up on time.

3.You’ll manage your taxes better

The end of the financial year can be a dreaded time for freelancers, especially if your paperwork is all over the place. You can keep better track of your earnings and outgoings online. Make the most of tools that are available such as a generator for your 1099 form 2017 that can help make it easier to file your return at the end of the year. When working as a freelancer, you can never be too organized, so make it your mission to keep on track in the new year.

4. Start protecting your earnings

With freelance work, nothing is certain. One month you could have several well-paying clients under your belt and the next you could end up with none. It’s time you started planning for those quiet periods by having a good pot of savings you can dip into if the worst were to happen. There are other ways you can protect your earnings that will help you be more confident in dealing with difficult financial periods and help you to protect your future.

5. Don’t accept less than what you’re worth

When you first start out as a freelancer, it can be tempting to take on jobs that are badly paid, or not even paid at all. This kind of behavior not only hurts you but others in the industry too. You deserve to be paid the fair amount for your services, so start getting into the habit of charging what you’re worth. Always agree payment upfront to avoid any difficult conversations when it comes to billing time.

It’s good to have goals for the new year, and as a freelancer, you should always strive to be better. Give your finances the attention they deserve and start taking better charge of your earnings in 2018.