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Does it make financial sense to become self-employed?

Customer Question

Does it make financial sense to become self-employed?
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: Finance
Expert:  RodneyA814 replied 10 days ago.

Hello there,

There are benefits in trading as self employed and through a company and all depends on your personal circumstances. One clear benefit is you avoid the all the regulatory obligations that come with having a company if you trade as self employed.

The below advantages and disadvantages would help to guide you. Please let me know should you have any more questions.

The advantages of being self-employed

There are plenty of perks of being self-employed, and this list isn't exhaustive:

  • you have more flexibility and control, so it may be easier to fit your work around other commitments and responsibilities, including childcare

  • your work can be more varied, as you may be working on several different projects for different clients at any one time

  • you can explore your creative and entrepreneurial side as you build your own business

  • you can deduct certain costs - travel and some utilities bills, for example - from your income when you’re calculating your tax liability

  • you may have the potential to earn more money, as day rates for self-employed consultants and freelancers tend to be much higher than salaries

  • you should be able to ditch your commute, as you’re likely to work from home, or from your own business premises

The disadvantages of being self-employed

It’s important to take into account the disadvantages of being self-employed too, in particular the risks and costs that come with self-employment, for example:

  • finding clients or a route to market can initially be challenging

  • there are likely to be some start-up costs, so you may need some money to get started

  • your income isn’t guaranteed, which can sometimes make it hard to keep up with rent or mortgage payments, loan payments and living expenses

  • you bear the responsibility for the failure or success of the business, so you don’t have much back-up if things go wrong

  • if you take a holiday or can’t work because you’re unwell, you won’t get paid

  • it can be more difficult to get approved for renting property, taking out a mortgage or getting a loan when you’re self-employed

  • when you’re self-employed, it can be difficult to separate your home life from your work life, and to get a good work-life balance

  • if you’re working on your own a lot, being self-employed can be isolating

  • you need to deal with the admin side of your business, which involves bookkeeping and complying with regulations