Registering as self-employed

When we mention the term self-employed, its normal for many people to presume we’re talking about an individual who owns their own company and essentially runs their own business. That’s true in some cases, but the minute you start earning regular money outside of employment, you’re self-employed in the taxman’s eyes.

That is why you need to register for self employment as soon as you start earning a bit of money on the side, and it’s certainly worth doing if you’re planning to pick up even more work in the not too distant future. once registered as self employed, you will then need to submit annual self-assessment forms outlining all of the money you’ve made from outside of work, and it can be wise to hire a professional accountant to do this for you, otherwise you can pick up charges for filling it out incorrectly.

Budgeting for the year ahead

Saving money isn’t easy, especially as we near the end of the year. That’s why it’s no surprise that many people are already looking forward to 2016! If your new years’ resolution is to save as much money as possible, it’s important to make sure you’re prepared.

We always recommend that people plan a budget for the year ahead, and you don’t want to get to February or March having found you’ve spent way too much. Create a plan now, working out the amount you earn and the amount you want to save each month. When it’s all down on paper, it’s a lot easier to find ways to save , and the more time you spend crunching number, the less time you’ll spend wasting money!

Budgeting can help you set out your objectives, and if you create a plan early, there’s more chance you’ll be able to achieve those goals.

Freelancing – The financial difficulties


No matter how skilled you are, you have to be good at business to make it work. You could be the best copywriter, web designer or photographer in the country, but if you can’t pick up the clients or sell your services at the right price, then you’re going to struggle.

There are often sudden dips in earnings for freelancers, but the more clients you pick up, the more security you gain. You can, however, charge clients a retention fee. This basically means that they can call on you at any time, and you will be ready to provide the service. They’re essentially ‘retaining your services’. This is something you should look into if you manage to find a good number of interested clients.

Remember a good service goes a long way, and most freelancers build their career on recommendations. You should never quit a full time job until you’ve built up your freelancing side business, because it can take months to get the business going. Make sure you’ve thought about your prices before you decide to go solo.

PayPal Friends and Family – Be Cautious


If you have a PayPal account, then you have probably heard of PayPal Friends and Family. It is essentially a service that allows family and friends to transfer money to each other. Some sellers will ask you to buy their goods this way, but you should be very careful.

They are basically asking you to do this because they do not want any sellers fees coming out of their PayPal account. This will happen if they use the normal, correct PayPal method. At the end of the day, if they are not your friends of family, then you shouldn’t buy any goods via this method. If you do choose to do as they ask, then PayPal Protection will not cover you; so always state you will only buy via PayPal (the normal method).

It’s not a scam as such, but it’s essentially a seller breaking the rules, so if you’re asked to pay this way, refuse!

Why do Online Banking systems crash / collapse?


Online bank systems such as have come under scrutiny in the last few years due to the amount of maintenance that the system has had to undergo. The reason being why these types of systems have had to under such a large amount of re-structuring in the last few years and months is down to the fact that on average, each day, these types of systems see up to 1,000,000 potential entry break points of unknown hackers trying to break the system. The security team behind something like the natwest online banking system, which has been running for a number of years now, must be extremely experienced and knowledgeable in being able to ward off any potential hackers, otherwise, the back could find itself in a sticking situation, especially if there has been a considerable amount of money taken from a number of large scale investor accounts, which sometimes does happen.