Starts-Up Business

At The Stan Lee, our dedicated services for start-ups business are:

  • Advice on different types of business formations including sole trader, partnership and limited companies
  • Tax and other legal compliance matters
  • Registration for your new business
  • Guidance on the duties and responsibilities of director(s)
  • Business plans and financial projections
  • New business structures
  • Using outsources for your web design and development
  • Business and marketing strategies
  • Funding advice on your new business
  • Helping in opening new business bank accounts

7 Key Accounting Tips for Startups

Managing your startups accounting is crucial to run your business smoothly and effectively. Here are seven key tips for your startups accounting. 

Are you about to start your new business venture? I welcome and wish you success of your startup business! However, managing your accounting can be a crucial factor in the success of your startup. Accounting provides you with insight into your business’s financial health and enables you to make informed decisions about your finances. In this article, I will provide you with 7 key accounting tips to help you manage your finances effectively for your startups.

  1. Register your Business: You should choose the right structure of your business either as a sole trader or under a limited company which is best suited for your business. You may consider professional advice to select the right structure to achieve your business goals and then register with the relevant authority.
  2. Set Up the Suitable Accounting System: It is vital to set up the right accounting system at the initial stage. This means deciding on the right accounting software and creating a chart of accounts that reflects your business’s By setting up your accounting system early, you can ensure that you have accurate records from the start and avoid scrambling to catch up later. Here is an article on digital bookkeeping.
  3. Have Separate Business Bank Account: It is crucial to keep your business and personal finances separate. This means having separate bank accounts, credit cards, and accounting records for your startups. Mixing personal and business finances can lead to confusion and make it difficult to track your business’s financial health. Additionally, separating your finances can help protect your personal assets if your business is sued or goes.
  4. Track Your Business Expenses: You might notice that expenses pile up quickly of your startup business and you might feel stress when you have difficulties managing your expenses. Therefore, you must record expenses accurately and remember investing in business is essential for your business growth. You should create your business budget which will help for the future to ensures that your have enough money to cover the costs.
  5. Understand the Cash Flow: The cash flow is the amount of money coming in and going out of your business. Understanding your cash flow is crucial to managing your startup’s finances effectively. You need to know when money is coming in and going out to ensure you have enough money to pay your bills and other expenses. Creating a cash flow statement can help you visualize your cash flow and make better-informed You may consider the monthly cash flow budget and manage your finance accordingly to avoid any unexpected circumstances.
  6. Get Up to Date with Tax: As a startup business, you are responsible for complying with tax laws and regulations. This includes filing your taxes accurately and on time, collecting and remitting sales tax, and keeping records for the required number of years. Staying up to date on tax laws and regulations can help you avoid penalties and fines and ensure your business remains in good standing. However, we will commend having your business tax accountants in place to look after your business tax matters and you have good time to focus on your core business activities.
  7. Plan for Growth: As your startup grows, your accounting needs will change. Plan for growth by selecting accounting software that can grow with your business and creating a chart of accounts that can accommodate new products or services. Additionally, consider hiring a professional accountant or bookkeeper to help you manage your growing accounting needs.

Managing your startup’s accounting can be a challenge, but by following these 7 key accounting tips, you can make the process more manageable. Don’t forget about the professional help hand from a suitable, trusted, reliable and qualified accountant that is best suited for your business needs.

At The Stan Lee, we can greatly look after your startup business accountancy, tax and support needs. Please get in touch with us to get our free initial consultation for your startups.

I will ALL THE BEST with your new business venture!

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Basic Guide to Startup Business: How to Start My Business Venture?

Basic Guide to Startup Business: How to Start My Business Venture?

Welcome to every inspired idea that may lead to be something great! However, you might have numerous options while making the decision for setting up your new business venture.


Do you have excellent business idea to start your own business venture? If the answer is yes, you may think how I should set up my startup business and what are the compliances that you need to follow. 

Don’t worry, the basic guide about the startup business will be explained in the article which might help you to get the general idea of how to start your new business journey.

How should I structure my start up business?

You can structure your business either as sole trader or under a Limited company. If you have partner with your business, you can do as a general partnership or under an LLP company. The best option depends on your circumstances and hence you might need professional advice on this matter.

Do I need a business bank account for my new business?

This is highly recommended to have a business bank account once you have set up your new business. You may choose high street bank or other online banks that best suited and friendly with your needs. Having a business bank account in place means you can manage your business incoming and outgoing money smoothly and smartly.    

How should I finance for my new business?

Any new business needs fund to start its journey. You can invest your own money if you have or find some investors who might can help your new business finance. Moreover, you can apply for a startup business loan to have your required funds. A business plan with financial forecast might help on your funding from investors and banks. 

What are the compliance requirements for my startup business?

You should register your start-up business with Companies House if you want to structure as a limited company or under an LLP company. Otherwise, you just need to register as a self employed or general partnership with HM Revenue and Customs. There are some registration requirements for other tax purposes including VATPAYE, CIS and more. To find out which one relates to you, you may consider professional advice or any other source of information. Some business needs other registration because of their nature of business. For examples, you may need to register with Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) if you are solicitors.    

Which accountancy services I need for my startup business?

Accountancy includes a range of services; annual accounts, audit, corporation tax, self assessment tax return, VAT, payroll, CIS, MTD, company secretarial and much more. You may need some of them rather than all accountancy services and it depends on your circumstances.    

How to choose a suitable and trusted accountant for my new business?

You need to find an accountant who is best suited to your business needs. Finding an accountant might be easy, but having the best suited one might not be easy. Therefore, you should follow the ways how to find an accountant.

Should I need professional advice before starting my new business?

This is not obvious to have a professional advice before starting your new business, but highly advisable to do so. Having plan with professional hands help to see the future of your new business venture.


Get in touch with us for your new business!

At the initial stage of your new business journey, you may face challenges or some difficulties on how to start the business. At The Stan Lee, we love to help for your startup business.

Talk to us and we’ll help on general advice regarding your start up business at no costs on our initial meeting.

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Why your accountant is the mentor you didn’t know you needed

Why your accountant is the mentor you didn’t know you needed

A business mentor can provide guidance and support, so you make the right decisions and stay focused on the end goal as a business owner. They can also help you move forward in your career by providing advice and feedback on what steps to take to reach the pinnacle of success.

But have you ever thought of your accountant as a mentor?

Why your accountant is the ideal mentor

Having someone who understands your business journey is incredibly important. You might see an accountant as someone who files your tax returns. But, in fact, we’re experienced business owners, with access to a significant network of other business professionals.

An accountant can be the mentor you didn’t know you needed. No-one knows your business better than us, so we’re perfectly placed to offer you advice, guide your business journey and help you push your skills and capabilities as a business owner.

As a mentor, an accountant will:

  • Expand your knowledge as an entrepreneur – as business owners, we have the knowledge and experience to help you move your business forward. And we can work with you to expand your leadership skills, business thinking and entrepreneurial ideas.
  • Be a shoulder to lean on – we’ll offer 1-2-1 mentoring sessions where we can listen to your unique worries and concerns as a business owner. Having someone on the same page to listen and empathise is vital for your business and your own mental health.
  • Guide the important elements of your business – we’ll help you manage and improve your business strategy, planning and decision-making skills. We’ll also provide the management information systems you need to guide your finances and planning.
  • Keep your finances on track – we’ll show you how to maximise profits, reduce costs, and make better financial decisions. We’ll also help you plan your own personal wealth and tax strategies, so you can achieve your own entrepreneurial goals and lifestyle.
  • Introduce you to a broader business network – we work with hundreds of other business owners across a range of industries. This means we can link you up with other entrepreneurs and founders, so you have a network of other like-minded individuals to connect with. This can be vital when brainstorming and benchmarking, or if you need to talk to someone who understands the specific pain points you’re experiencing.

Having someone to guide your business journey can be invaluable. A business owner must grow and evolve along with their business, and having regular mentoring catch-ups is the ideal way to progress, offload your concerns and look for new inspiration.

If you want to grow as an entrepreneur, please come and talk to us about our mentoring services and how we can guide your business future from here at The Stan Lee.

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Are you pursuing a trade, or following a hobby?

Are you pursuing a trade, or following a hobby?

Are you pursuing a hobby, or carrying out a trade? It can be hard to define in some circumstances, so we’ve explained the nine ‘badges of trade’ as used by HMRC. 

Many of us have hobbies that are dear to our heart, whether it’s playing guitar, building a giant model train system or knitting copious numbers of jumpers for our family.

In many cases, it’s pretty clear whether these activities are being carried out in the course of a trade, or are nothing more than a personal hobby. But disputes with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) do arise. Are the profitable activities you carry out as part of your niche interest no more than a hobby? Or are the loss-making activities you carry out considered to be a trade, with the losses used to reduce your overall tax bill?

Let’s look at how you prove if this is simply a hobby, or a profit-making trade?

The nine ‘badges of trade’ and what they tell you

There’s not much meaningful guidance in the UK legal statute on what does and what does not constitute a trade or hobby. So, how do you make the differentiation?

One approach has been to consider the ‘badges of trade’. These badges can show the presence or absence of certain aspects that indicate whether a trade does or does not exist.

These nine badges are:

  • Profit-seeking motive: An intention to make a profit supports trading, but by itself is not conclusive.
  • Number of transactions: Systematic and repeated transactions will support ‘trade’.
  • The nature of any asset acquired: Is the asset of such a type or amount that it can only be turned to advantage by a sale? Or did it yield an income or give ‘pride of possession’, for example, a picture for personal enjoyment?
  • Existence of similar transactions: Transactions that are similar to those of an existing trade may themselves be trading.
  • Changes to the asset: Was the asset repaired, modified or improved to make it more easily saleable or saleable at a greater profit?
  • The way the sale was carried out: Was the asset sold in a way that was typical of trading organisations? Alternatively, did it have to be sold to raise cash for an emergency?
  • The source of finance: Was money borrowed to buy the asset? Could the funds only be repaid by selling the asset?
  • Interval of time between purchase and sale: Assets that are the subject of trade will normally, but not always, be sold quickly. Therefore, an intention to resell an asset shortly after purchase will support trading. However, an asset which is to be held indefinitely, is much less likely to be a subject of trade.
  • Method of acquisition: An asset that is acquired by inheritance, or as a gift, is less likely to be the subject of trade.

These badges are not an ‘all or nothing’ indicator. But when considered in the round, they may lead to an overall impression of whether or not a trade is being carried out.

Even if it is agreed that a trade exists, HMRC may argue that it’s not being carried out on a commercial basis. If so, this would deny any sideways loss relief (offsetting the losses of one activity against the profits of another for tax purposes).

Talk to us about checking the status of your hobby or trade

With the new trading allowance of £1,000 per annum, any activities you carry out which generate income below £1,000 won’t be required to be reported on your tax return. Because of this, there’s no danger of minor income from hobbies being targeted as trading activities.

The emerging problem is in areas such as crypto assets and day-trading of shares. Depending on the specific circumstances, these can be considered as trading, or generating capital gains and losses, or being outside of taxation altogether.

Where you carry out any activities outside of your mainstream business, talk to us at The Stan Lee so that we can advise you of any potential tax traps and tax benefits that may arise.

Get in touch to talk through your non-business activities and let’s get your best suited fee quote.

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3 Cloud Accounting Tips To Save Your Business Time And Money

3 Cloud Accounting Tips To Save Your Business Time And Money

Keeping on top of your accounts is a big part of running a successful and profitable business. But you don’t want to spend ALL your time dealing with accounting tasks, especially when that time could be spent building customer relationships, or developing new products etc.

So, how do you keep your finances in check, while also spending less time and money on your accounts?

  1. Bringing your accounting into the digital age

Switching to cloud accounting can be a revolutionary step for many business owners, especially when you look at the ways you can streamline and automate the basic accounting tasks. By using accounting platforms like Xero, QuickBooks, MYOB or Sage, you get all the basics of small business financial management, but with the benefits of smart automation.

With most modern cloud accounting software, you can:

  • Automate the scanning and digitisation of your expenses and receipts
  • Automatically reconcile your bank transactions with your invoices and bills
  • Connect your accounts to other time-saving apps for mileage claims or staff expenses.
  1. Getting paid faster and with less admin

With a cloud accounting platform driving your business, you also make it easier to send out e-invoices and get paid faster and more effectively. Improving your payment times and cash collection can make a huge difference to your cashflow position, and also sets the right expectations with your customers – making it clear that you require to be made on time.

Using the invoicing function in your business software, you can:

  • Quickly send out electronic invoices as soon as a job is completed
  • Set up automated invoices to be sent out at pre-agreed points in a project
  • Include payment buttons on your invoice, so customers can pay via PayPal or card
  • Remove the barriers to payment and speed up payment times.
  1. Getting a better overview of your important numbers

Using cloud accounting isn’t just about automating the time-consuming financial admin tasks. By recording and tracking all the financial and non-financial data flowing through your system, your accounting platform can actually provide you with a goldmine of useful real-time information.

With cloud accounting providing your reporting, you can

  • Access totally up-to-date real-time information, to improve your decision-making
  • Track your performance against targets to see how well the business is performing
  • Monitor spending and budgets to keep your cashflow under control
  • Understand your return on investment when it comes to sales and marketing activity 
  • See how promotion has driven sales but reduced your profit, due to discounting.

Talk to us about setting up a more productive kind of accounting

If you want complete control of your finances and business decision-making, updating your accounting software and processes will be key to achieving that goal.

We can help you decide which accounting software is most suited to your business, and how to maximise the benefits you get from automation and real-time data.

Get in touch to talk through updating your accounting and you can request us here fee quote.

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Xero Certified Accountants in Canary Wharf: How to Maintain Your Digital Accountancy Records with Xero?

Xero Certified Accountants in Canary Wharf: How to Maintain Your Digital Accountancy Records with Xero?

Xero Certified Accountants in Canary Wharf

Are you in the business or about into the business here in the UK? You know that the UK accountancy is now going mostly digitalised. You may need experts’ hand to help on your digital accountancy records. In this article, we have a brief about how to maintain your digital records with Xero software.  

Maintain Accountancy Records with Xero:

  • Xero Set Up: First you need to have the subscription with Xero and then set up your business with them in just few minutes. Xero has default Chart of Accounts that ready to use for you. You can setup your business not only for accounts, but also for VAT, PAYE, CIS and much more.
  • Bank Connection: You can connect your bank securely with Xero software so that all real time transactions will feed with Xero and ready to reconcile rather than manual import.
  • Bank Reconciliation: Once the bank transactions are in place with Xero, you can reconcile them on daily, weekly, monthly or at your own choice. The correct reconciliation leads to accurate readymade trial balance with profit and loss accounts and balance sheet so that you can prepare your management and final accounts.
  • Invoices and Bill Entry: Do you worry about manual invoices or invoicing software with extra costs. You can create your customised invoices with Xero and send to your clients digitally in such few clicks. You can also see online the amount unpaid from your clients that help you to accelerate your cash flow management. You can also do the bills entry with Xero to have the report of accounts payable.
  • File Stores: Worry about to keep your income and expense invoices that need file storage with extra costs? You can keep your files in Xero and have access anytime from anywhere as you like.
  • Data capture: If you have subscription with Xero, you can connect your company with Hubdoc with no extra costs so that you can capture data digitally. From Hubdoc, the data will integrate into Xero automatically once they are connected and upload data in Hubdoc correctly.
  • Expenses claims: You can manage your expenses with Xero and reimburse the spending of your employees. Even you can manage the expenses on the go including the mileage.   
  • VAT Returns: All VAT registered businesses here in the UK must submit their VAT returns with MTD (making tax digital) compatible software and you can do so with friendly Xero software. Preparing your VAT returns and submitting digitally is just with a click.
  • Much more: Using Xero means you have much more benefits including contacts, accept payment, financial reporting, easing multi currencies, connect with POS (point of sales) and so on.

The Stan Lee is Xero Certified Accountants based in Canary Wharf, London. We are ready to assist you on your cloud-based accounting with Xero software. We offer setting up your business with Xero software at no costs for our clients.

Get Free Xero Set Up

Disclaimer: The above information is just as a general information that might help you. However, we highly recommend having expert advice suited for your circumstances. The Stan Lee and its author are not liable if you rely on this and have any consequences.

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Restaurant Accountants: Checklist for Your Catering and Hospitality Business Accountancy Needs

Restaurant Accountants: Checklist for Your Catering and Hospitality Business Accountancy Needs

Are you an entrepreneur and involved in restaurant business here in the UK? We understand that you have calibrated in your business industry. However, are you aware about your catering and hospitality business accountancy needs? In this article, we have a checklist for you that might assist for your business accountancy, taxation, and support requirements.

Checklist for Restaurant Business Accountancy Needs:

  • Business plan including forecast: Are you about to start your new business? Then you should set up your business plan before starting the business. You may also need business plan for your existing business. You should assess your business whether this is suitable to you, you have feasibility to start with and finally decide whether this is acceptable by you. You should also forecast in which period you will go for breakeven point and then earning your desire profit.
  • Register your business: Once you have decided for your restaurant business, you need to register the business either as a sole trader or under a limited company. This is a common question that which one is the best and you should seek an advisor for this suited to you. You should register for PAYE scheme if you have staff and for VAT where applicable. You also need to be aware about other registration relevant to your industry including licence from the local authority, health and safety and so on.
  • Book-keeping: You may be aware that your business accounts preparation depends on accurate and timely bookkeeping, and you should do so on regular basis. You may have inhouse bookkeeper, but this might be costly to you and do not add value to your business as not core business activities. We recommend using the outsourcing for your business bookkeeping if suited to you. Don’t forget digital aspect for your bookkeeping as we are now emerging technology for accountancy matters.    
  • Payroll and workplace pension: You may need to run payroll scheme if you have people working for your business as employees. Your business may be also subject to workplace pension if the employees have income in certain level. The payroll period could be on weekly, monthly, four weekly and other basis. Under the payroll, you will deduct tax and NIC from employees’ salary and as an employer, you will pay NIC as well.  
  • Company accounts and tax: You need to prepare the accounts and submit the self-assessment tax return to HMRC as self-employed if you have registered your business as a sole trader. As a limited company, you need to prepare limited company accounts under the Companies House Act and submit to them. You also need to prepare corporation tax computation and submit the CT600 to HMRC with the accounts.    
  • Others: The above lists are not complete and hence you should consider that as follows:
  1. Don’t foregate to have your business bank account to run the business
  2. Consider preparing management accounts to see how your business going rather than waiting for the end of the year
  3. Choose the suitable accountants where you can work smoothly in a partnership

We are aware that you have a range of challenges in your industry including customer trend, emerging technology, competitiveness, and an economic vibrant niche. Your industry is mostly affected because of the recent pandemic outbreak and now it could be the good time to resume your business after a long of stressful and terrible period.

The above information is just as a general information that might help you. However, we highly recommend having expert advice suited for your circumstances. The Stan Lee and its author are not liable if you rely on this and have any consequences.

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7 Key Points How to Start a New Business?

7 Key Points How to Start a New Business? Your Start Ups Business Advice

7 Key Points How to Start a New Business? Your Start Ups Business Advice

Welcome to every inspired idea that you might have to explore you as a successful entrepreneur. But do you have notes and set up the plan how to start the journey of your new business venture. In this article, we have listed the most common seven key points about how to start a new business.

7 Key Points for Start Ups Business 

  1. Market Research: Your idea is mostly inspired, but don’t forget about the market to explore the idea. You should have research about the target customers whether they will welcome your new idea. Moreover, don’t forget to consider about rivalry in your potential market that what is your position to compete with them.
  2. Business Plan: You should write a clear business plan to lead your idea and you may need an expert hand to support in your writing. The business plan should write about your new idea, how to go into the market, financial aspect, organisation chart and so on. The plan will help to implement your idea and find the prospective financial support from lenders and investors.
  3. Budget and Forecast: You also need to set up your budget and project about your business outcomes. In your budget, you should consider the initial costs and the available finance to cover the start up costs. You also need to consider working capital and predict at which point you want to go breakeven point.
  4. Pricing: The pricing or fee structure is very crucial part of your business to start with. The pricing should be set in such a way that it will cover your costs with targeted profit and also your target customers are willing to pay.  
  5. Business Structure: This is most common question how to structure the business; as a sole trader, partnership, or a limited company? The simple answer that this is your choice, and you should consider tax, compliance, admin, and other aspects to make your final decision. We will recommend having your start-ups business accountants for your business structure.
  6. Business Registration: We understand that this is now exciting time to register your business. Based on your business structure, you should register your business with the relevant organisations.
  7. Find Your Accountants: Your idea is inspired and now you are excited to start your journey. Let’s start your new business journey with a reliable, trusted and qualified professional helping hand accountants.

The above lists are not completed lists and therefore, don’t forget to consider the other points relevant to you. The most important is about your business marketing and promotion including a good website.

How can The Stan Lee help?

We are here at The Stan Lee to support on your start-ups business venture. Stan Lee Accountancy pride to serve as AWARDs winning accountants for your accountancy, taxation and business support needs here in the UK. Our team has the calibre and good hands to embark on your business venture.

Our initial consultation is completely free of charge without any obligations. Moreover, we offer ongoing tax and financial advice for our clients without charging additional fees. 

For further information, any questions or concerns and advice about the start-ups business, please call one of the team here at The Stan Lee and let’s find out how we can help.

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Should I Register My Business Start-Up as a Sole Trader or Limited Company

Should I Register My Business Start-Up as a Sole Trader or Limited Company

Should I Register My Business Start-Up as a Sole Trader or Limited Company

One big decision for any new start-up is whether to register the business as a sole trader or limited company? It is a common question that many new business owners will face, and this article breaks down the two options for you.

What are the differences?

Sole trader

Registering as a sole trader means that you have complete control of the business whether you employ others or not, you will also keep all the profits after tax. Instead of paying corporation tax and paying yourself a salary the profits you make are your salary – you will of course have to pay tax just as you would on any other income.

Limited company

A limited company on the other hand means that you will be registering a business name that you will work for, and in this case, earn a salary from. Any profits you make belong to the company and will either come in as a salary, dividends, or loan.

Which one is best for me?

Your business goals and strategies will determine which option you decide to take. If for example you are making your own products and selling them at markets or online via websites such as Etsy or Ebay, but you have another job then registering as a sole trader would be the most beneficial.

It is quick and simple to do, and it is also tax-friendly which is important for you to make a profit and a success of the business. A sole trader is perfect if you are just starting out. Depending on your future success you can register as a limited company later down the line.

How do I register?

Registering as a sole trader needs to be done before the end of the tax year and before October 5th where you need to submit a tax return. Remember, there is a certain amount you can earn before HMRC will expect you to pay tax – this is called a trading allowance.

If you are earning above this allowance, then you need to complete a self-assessment tax return which can be done by registering online or by posting the relevant information to HMRC which you can download from the official HMRC website.

Registering your business as a limited company is usually done via Companies House and you have the option to purchase a ready-made company name, or you can form your own company. You also need to appoint a company director who must be over 16 years old and cannot have been bankrupt or disqualified from directing a previous company.

Speak to the experts

If you are starting a new business and need some advice on whether to register as a sole trader or limited company then our team of highly trained business consultants can help you with all aspects of your small business. If you would like to know more about how we can help you why not get in touch with the friendly team here?

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