1. Make sure you have a sufficient reserve
No matter what you do - almost no company runs at full speed from the start. Allow 3-5 years for construction and check in advance whether you have an adequate liquidity reserve.
If you are already self-employed, building up a good reserve is at the top of the to-do list. Many learned to appreciate this, especially during the Corona crisis.
2. Always check funding
Find out whether you are eligible for funding. If you need loans, get advice from banks. Start-ups and founders come up with special loan programs.
Use aid programs in good time in times of crisis - even if you are unsure whether you will get into trouble at all. It often takes time for funds to be approved or allocated.
3. Keep the costs low
Modesty is appropriate - a small car, a simple office. Everything you don't spend doesn't have to be earned.
Phrases like "I still have to buy a car to pay the tax" are popular but simply wrong - around half you have to pay yourself (depending on the tax rate).
4. Invest in good account and insurance planning
A cheap business account is difficult to find. Search carefully before committing yourself. The number of your bookings often determines the amount of the monthly costs.
If you also need a loan or a overdraft facility, how the bank and the customer deal with each other is particularly important. Check direct banks too, some also offer business accounts. You certainly need insurance too. Find out what is needed. Also ask industry colleagues.
Company liability insurance is a must. But also compare the prices with the insurance companies. Those who are already self-employed should check these items again every three to five years.
5. Seek tax advice
If you cannot do it yourself, find a good tax advisor. Discuss the company form, the tax requirements and special features as well as the regulatory requirements.
Keep talking about tax issues - it's called a tax consultant.
6. Orderly bookkeeping - right from the start
Expenditures can be deducted even before the official foundation. Collect all receipts, create an Excel list of expenses.
Always keep an eye on your income and expenses as a self-employed person - you need to know your numbers to make good decisions.
7. Think of the tax
As soon as revenue flows, you need to keep an eye on the tax. While in the year of foundation, a particularly large number of expenses may prevent you from making a profit, you have to put part of the tax revenue into a - preferably separate - account from the moment you make a profit.
Later, young self-employed people are often overwhelmed by the fact that a year comes with a hefty additional payment and the prepayment is immediately increased in parallel. This has plunged some of them into existential difficulties. At the moment, the tax offices are accommodating due to the Corona crisis with the payment terms, but this will certainly not remain the case in the long run.
8. Develop a marketing concept
I don't mean the pretty flyer or the high-quality business card. Successful marketing is a concept from company nameplate, online activities, blog / book /Article, Lectures, advertisements up to network meetings.
Here, a schedule is also important, so that later marketing is not lost in the hustle and bustle, but is carried out continuously. Those who have been self-employed for a few years often neglect this point. If things go well, such issues are put on hold. But in marketing, continuity leads to success.
9. Check your private expenses
The need for insurance changes due to independence. Liquidity and flexibility are becoming more important.
Put your private finances to the test. Also try to keep the costs "slim" here.
Conclusion: good luck with your independence!
If all points have been taken into account and you are always on the ball in your chosen job, then all I can say is: Good luck with your independence.
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