Being self-employed in the UK is a pretty common occurrence with around 20% of the workforce being registered as self-employed. If you have recently moved to London from overseas, starting up a business or becoming a freelancer is something you have probably started considering.
This guide will help you understand everything you need to know about starting a business in London by showing you all the different kinds of legal structures for UK companies.
Check if you can legally start your own business in London
First, you will need to make sure that your immigration status will allow you to work freely in the UK. For non-EU and EFTA members, this might mean that you need to ensure that you have the right residence permit and a necessary work visa. If you are a UK citizen you probably are eligible to start up a business anytime.
Create a business plan
If you planning your own startup business you will need to make a business plan. This is what will ultimately help you understand if your business idea will have a place in London and if they will be sustainable and successful. You will first need to research the market and prepare your budget. You can ask around the local shops that are related to your business for some information about the industry’s situation.
Decide the type of business legal structure
Do you want to create a partnership or are you more of a sole trader? Are you just a freelancer or do you want to create a limited company?
If you are interested in creating a limited company in the UK, London, there are several sites you can use online. This site can offer you different packs with which you can form your limited company. Whether you want a digital version or a physical version of your company, you will get all the required documents for starting up a business either through e-mail or physically sent through mail on paper.
We recommend that you check out YourCompanyFormations because of their easy-to-use website and various offers.
Choose a name and pick an address
If you are a sole trader, you should have no problems using your own name, if you want that is. You will also need an address when you first register your London business for tax purposes and when you are joining the company register. However, only limited companies have to register their names, although it is probably the best to register it as a trademark since you do not want anyone trading under your name.
If you are an entrepreneur you should set up a Limited Company
You will, however, need to appoint a secretary and directors, work out your shareholders and shares, write your articles of association and your memorandum. You will also have to open a separate bank account for your newly formed limited company and you need to register for a corporation tax.
Additional licenses or permits
Depending on what type of business you are, you may need some additional documents such as licenses or permits (to sell alcohol or play music on the street, etc.)