Things to Consider When You Start Your Business
So, I started a consultancy business in Denmark over the last months. Here are a few things that I needed to consider over these previous months. You can use them as a checklist. I cannot comment on how transferable this list is to other countries.
I don't have any affiliation with the companies mentioned.
It starts with the proper company form. The primary considerations are:
- your risk level: if you are a limited company in any form (for example in Denmark: ApS) then you can sleep tight. Even if something goes wrong, your private property won't be touched (you better ask your lawyer about the real risk here). If you are doing it for a single-owner approach (enkelmand/VSO), then you are at least theoretically in the risk zone. Depending on your business, this is unlikely, and there are insurances to consider.
- tax implications: ask your accountant for this. It looks like that not all accountants are created equally, and they might have some detailed knowledge of one or the other type.
You will need a bank account dedicated to your business. I took Lunar. So far, I like the following:
- The virtual credit card arrives instantaneously and works like a charm.
- Transactions are instantaneous, too. I chose a business account, and you seem to need one if you want to get VAT paid back. My business account has some interesting abilities (not sure about the private accounts):
- It helps you to collect all receipts, and tells you which transaction misses a receipt, and via https://business.lunar.app/, can you get them all in one zip file for the accountant.
- You can share files (receipts, e.g. via email print) towards the Lunar App and attach them to the transaction.
Tax Declarations / Accountant
With the account comes the necessity to file tax statements. You can do it yourself with software like Billy (they have a valuable ebook to understand this), or you can find an accountant (which is helpful to understand the correct type).
Insurance comes in many forms. I suggest you have a chat with an insurance person early on. You can at least ensure the following:
- Your company's property
- Law support
- #ork accidents
- The consultancy advice you provide
- The products you provide
If you were employed before, you need a new pension scheme. In Denmark, these schemes often include some health insurance and disability insurance. Each time you want to increase your insurance level (pay more in, get more out), you must answer health questions and open up all health issues from the last year. But spending a lot from day one might be challenging as you have a low income. Many use PFA via Lederne, but I chose a different one.
Buying things from yourself
Your company might want to buy your laptop and your working desktop. They might no longer be covered by your home insurance when they are located at home.
You might need a new phone number. Or you want to take over your number from your previous employment. There are special work phone tariffs, but they have a three-year binding. So, think about what a regular private contract can do for you.
One trick I learned along the way was to call them up. In the shop, they can sell you anything, but the phone conversation will be recorded so that they cannot provide you with other things than requested. The result will fit your needs better.
You need a new one if you get internet from your previous job. Your phone provider will want to sell you a good deal. But compared with "landline" providers.
Your company should pay for some of the stuff you have subscribed to.
I now got myself a rejsekort for my company (at least I requested one - it takes already over a month). It allows me to have the journeys to and from work paid directly via my company.
Cars are another way of travelling. I recommend you talk to your accountant.