Help for Start up Businesses

A CloverMost people who start up in business do so because they have a good business proposition and the enterprise and commitment to see it through, not because they are experts in the legal, financial, and fiscal aspects of running a business.

Indeed, these matters can often seem daunting, and even off-putting, to the budding entrepreneur. The good news is that you do not need to be an expert in these fields to succeed in business. All you need is the support of a team of trained experts.

That's where we fit in. Bring us your business ideas and we'll help you to evaluate them in a constructive and realistic manner. We can also help you:

  • Decide on the most suitable structure for your business - sole trader, partnership, or limited company
  • Prepare a business plan, cashflow projections, budgets, and trading forecasts
  • Assess your finance requirements, advise on the best sources of finance, and draw up the necessary proposals
  • Establish a good working relationship with your bank
  • Complete any registration procedures with Companies House, Inland Revenue, or Revenue and Customs
  • Deal with company secretarial issues
  • Set up a recording system for your internal use and for complying with statutory requirements

Start your new venture on a sure footing - call us for an initial consultation today.

Being an aspiring entrepreneur or small business owner can be a lonely existence, and everyone expects you to be an expert in all aspects of your business whereas, in reality, you only tend to be an expert in the topics about which you speak. 

OBC offer support in respect of the other aspects of your business where you might not be so strong.

Where to start?

Everyone is different so the following are a few general ideas to consider, but the answer is always get advice specific to your own circumstances.

Why not start by listening to Mike Ogilvie advising a group of Professional Speakers about setting up their businesses



Start as a sole trader and check if you will benefit from being VAT Registered; if most of your likely customers will be businesses that are already VAT registered,  the VAT will not pose the customer a problem.

Speak to your accountant to consider the advantage or otherwise of using a Flat Rate Scheme for your VAT.  


If the business starts making more serious profit (eg £40k +) the business can subsequently (in year 2 or year 3) be transferred to a  partnership with a spouse, or possibly a Limited (Ltd) Company,

The reason for this is that if you are going to incur a loss because your advertising costs, website costs and secretarial and accounting costs exceed  your income, it is likely to be in your first year of trading - and that loss can be carried back against other taxable income of that year, or of your last 3 years to reclaim tax + interest from HMRC ( you might even be able to legitimately make the loss bigger by employing a Spouse as an assistant)

Do read our blog about paying family members for more on this

If you make a loss as a LTD Company  - it can only be carried forward against future income of that company 

For more tax planning advice for your business, click here

What costs can you claim against your income for tax purposes ? - basically anything that is relevant to helping you be successful in your business. However you need to know what costs are acceptable in law.

For more help, do look at one of our guides for our clients on our site here


Low or "average earning" businesses do not normally need a Ltd company unless their work is controversial (eg - if there is a potential risk from the advice you give) because their PI insurance should cover most risks .

We would advise all businesses to check with a reputable insurance broker if they should have PI insurance cover.


For a side business, that is similar but also distinguishably different,  if you seriously need to avoid charging VAT, you might be able use a separate Ltd Company that is not VAT registered or, easier still,  you might be able to form a partnership with a spouse for this business, which must be clearly identifiable as a  separate business with a different brand and "offering" to your main VAT registered business,

BUT, please note, there is always the chance that HMRC might try to argue it is the same business and might look to "aggregate" the two, so be  very careful and take advice before doing something like this.

Have a look at these many detailed tips for starting or growing your speaking business - you might find them helpful

Friendly word of warning - Avoid underestimating your start up costs


For bookkeeping we recommend you use XERO, and Receipt Bank, online software accessable from anywhere in the world. We have experts to support you if you need help.


We are happy to offer payroll support through our payroll bureau. RTI penalties are harsh and it is not worth you getting this wrong - do take advice, or ask for one of our guides.


We have systems to offer you to help you with setting appropriate goals for your business.

Call us now 01323-720555 to discuss how we can help you.

Get in touch for a free Consultation Today

Find out more