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Ten questions to answer before setting up your own business

An accountant has issued a checklist to help the expected flood of New Year entrepreneurs decide if going it alone is right for them.

Phil Bates, Principal at Cheshire and Wirral accountants Phillip Bates & Co, says that many people will use the Christmas holidays to make their final plans to set up on their own, while others will do so having been made redundant as a result of the continuing tough economic climate.

The 10 questions Bates says all prospective entrepreneurs should ask themselves are:

  • Does a market exist for your business idea or product?
  • Where will your first client, project or sale come from?
  • Have you got enough income / savings to sustain you and any family until the business establishes itself?
  • Have you done a business plan – written down, not just in your head?
  • How are you going to find new opportunities while satisfying demands of the business you have?
  • Are you ready not to have a regular pay cheque?
  • Are you able or happy to reduce your expenditure while you develop your business?
  • Are you ready to live and breathe your business including working longer hours?
  • Is your family ready for you to take the plunge?
  • Do you back yourself 110 per cent to succeed?

Phil, who has worked with business owners for more than 30 years, said: “We always see an influx of people wanting to set up on their own after the Christmas and New Year period.

“In some cases, it is something they have been mulling over for some time but the extended holiday has given them time to decide to go for it. For others, they make it a New Year resolution to enter the world of self-employment.

“The number of would-be entrepreneurs has increased in the last few years because of the recession and people being laid off or taking redundancy.

“Becoming your own boss can be incredibly exciting and fulfilling, but the checklist I have put together will hopefully assist people to step back and make sure that self-employment is definitely the right thing for them and their loved ones.”

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