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Becoming SE a few months in

(7 Posts)
flubba Fri 01-Mar-13 06:35:50

Usual story I guess is that a hobby has become something I'd like to make (some!) money out of ~ I make fabric handmade goods and started off making things for friends and family, then was commissioned to make a few more things so gave a stall at a local craft fair a go. That went well so did one at my kids' school fair and then one at Christmas. I also have a website but so far haven't sold much through that.

I've (rather belatedly?) realised I should register myself as SE and start doing things officially. However I'm confused as to what date I should put on the form as to when I started to become SE? (I certainly don't have receipts for all things I've sold though would be able to give rough estimates - we're talking a in the low hundreds). Is it best/okay to just state today's date (or even just after new tax year?)

I'm also confused as to what I do about all the consumables and equipment I've bought to this date that will allow me to continue to make and sell things? How would I account for these?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

InMySpareTime Fri 01-Mar-13 07:57:16

When you register with HMRC they offer you a free webinar about expenses etc. that explains what you can and can't count.
If you are SE alongside another employment, or have a child under 12(?) you get HRP for, it doesn't matter what date you put as starting SE, if that doesn't apply, you should put an early date to keep your NI contributions up (£2.50 a week).
You really need to start keeping accurate accounts, if only to keep track of how profitable your business is. An excel spreadsheet would do it.

flubba Fri 01-Mar-13 08:06:38

Thank you for replying.

I'm not in other employment, but do have 3 DCs under 12.

So if I put the date as, say, November 2012 (I did a craft fair in November), but don't have the receipts for the things I bought nor invoices for the things I sold, how difficult will it be for me to fill in the self-assessment form when the time comes?

I have, in the past month, started keeping track of what I spend and have sold, but beyond that, it's all a bit grey.

InMySpareTime Fri 01-Mar-13 08:14:13

The tax return for the first tax year just wants a number (profit/loss) AFAIK. (Someone more knowledgeable will come along soon and correct mesmile)
Try to dig out as many receipts as possible, and at least work out roughly what your sales were, do you have records of money banked to work from?

flubba Fri 01-Mar-13 13:03:48

Yes, I've got rough ideas of both outgoings (less) but definitely of sales - jotted down in places and also some bank records (although won't be able to 'prove' all of it). It's good to know a basic profit /loss is all they'll need in the first year. As I say, it's to the tune of the low £100s as opposed to 1000s (I wish!), so hopefully it won't be too tricky.

InMySpareTime Fri 01-Mar-13 15:04:50

I've gone to all the trouble of making detailed spreadsheet-based accounts and scanning all my receipts, and so far my business has made a grand total of £125! (Though it will be £325 by the end of the tax year, minus expenses will take it below zerosad)
I figure if I set up systems now, when the business takes off it will be easy to keep on top of the money.

flubba Fri 01-Mar-13 16:41:44

Oh yes, I think that mine might be rather similar when I sit down and work it all out probably why I've put it off as I'll realise how unprofitable it is!

Thanks for your help smile

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