Tips for the Self-Employed
Running a business is the hardest job you can have. Unlike many attorneys, I have experience running a business, so I know the questions and obstacles business owners face firsthand, in addition to the legal requirements they must meet.
Owning a business is one of the greatest, most fulfilling ways to achieve the American Dream. Here are some tips you should find helpful along the way:
- Use a Payroll Service even if you have no employees. Many payroll services will process your payroll, remit your taxes and file your quarterly tax returns for a very low fee.
- Use a CPA to do your business tax returns. You will be surprised to find out that a CPA does not cost much more than a tax preparer. Spend a little more and use a real professional.
- Have a separate bank account for your business. This will help you track income and expenses. Failure to have a separate bank account can result in legal problems.
- Do not pay personal expenses from your business revenues. Doing so will cause legal and tax problems.
- Use a program like Quicken to keep track of your income and expenses. These programs are inexpensive, and they will save hours on gathering tax information for your CPA.
- Do not go into debt for any reason. Use your profits to operate and expand your business.
- Look into group health insurance for your family. If you or a family member cannot obtain health insurance due to a pre-existing condition, you may be able to get coverage through a group insurance policy purchased by your business.
- Grow your business slowly. Many have gone out of business by expanding too quickly.
- Keep your business expenses low. Shop around for big expenses such as equipment and office/shop space.
- Be ready to work much harder than you did when you were an employee. Pick a business you love, because you will be married to it.