Things To Consider In Your First Year of Trading
06 March 2020
You’ll often hear people inside of, and outside of business stating that ‘the first year of trading is always the hardest’, and they’re not far wrong. With many fledgling companies not turning a profit in the first year of business, it can be a real challenge to build and maintain a business built from scratch. Thankfully, there are some things that you can do to make your first year of trading as smooth as possible, and the team at Curtis Law have put together their top 3 tips for what you should consider in your first year of trading.
In this article, we will give you some insight into some of the things you will need to consider in your first year of trading, from finding the right commercial property to house your business to what you should consider focusing your attention on.
Building A Business Plan
It’s fair to say that heading into a new business venture can be challenging under any circumstances, but starting a business without a robust business plan in place is near impossible. We would actually recommend having a business plan in place before you even launch your business, but if you are already operating without one, then you should make it a priority.
Putting a clear structure to your vision in place in the form of a business plan gives you written documentation of exactly which direction your business is aiming in over the next few years. Your plan should include some of the key milestones your business is aiming for, what your unique selling point is, your target market, product and pricing plan. Alongside all of this you should have a clearly laid out finance strategy and marketing plan to boost sales.
Leasing Your Perfect Property
Finding the right property to operate from can genuinely make or break your business in the first year of trading. There are a whole host of considerations that you must take into account when it comes to leasing the right property for your business needs, from thinking about upscaling in the future to not leasing a property that is far too big for your requirements.
In some cases, new businesses will over-estimate just how much space they need, as they invest in a commercial property that is too big, and inevitably the monthly rental costs can be too large and unsustainable. In other cases, start-ups can opt for a property that is far too small for their requirements, and if the business does begin to thrive and grow, then they will find themselves looking for a new commercial property well before their lease agreement is up.
Our advice is to find the middle-ground and look for properties that are potentially scalable, for example, if you lease an office space, it could be beneficial to find out if the office space could be extended in the future. This would give you the opportunity to enjoy lower rental payments in your first year of trading, whilst also offering the flexibility to upgrade to a larger office space in the future.
Know Your Deadlines – And Don’t Miss Them!
When it comes to owning and running your own business, it’s essential that you have a couple of deadlines in your diary, specifically tax returns due dates. The tax year runs from 6th April to 5th April in the following year, and you will have until January to complete your tax return.
For example, if you began trading in May 2019, your businesses first tax return will be for the tax year April 2019 to April 2020, with your tax return required by 31st January 2021 – this will be submitted to HMRC.
It’s obviously extremely important to ensure that your business does hit this deadline, as your company will face hefty fines if you do happen to miss it without a valid reason. We would recommend keeping a close eye on your finances each month, so you can simply submit your tax return well ahead of the deadline.
If you do choose to outsource your accounting, the pressure of deadlines will be taken away from you, but it’s still important to ensure that all of your financial accounts are in order throughout the year!
Curtis Law are pleased to have some of the most experienced commercial lease solicitors in Lancashire and Manchester, so if you are in your first year of business and looking for the perfect commercial property for your business, be sure to get in touch with our team.
Our experienced team of commercial lease solicitors in Manchester and Lancashire have years of experience dealing with all manner of commercial leases, from start-ups right through to established national companies. If you would like to find out more about how we can help you, then please feel free to call us on 01254 297130 to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable solicitors today. Alternatively, if you are pressed for time, then you can get in touch by using our simple online enquiry form, and our team will be in touch with you as soon as possible to discuss your requirements.