How to Contract Through Your Own Limited Company

For many, the prospect of self-employment is just a dream as they believe it can be complicated. But working through your own limited company is actually very simple.

From setting up your own company, finding a contract and managing your finances, there's a wealth of support available to make the lives of contractors as easy as possible.

How to contract through your own limited company

If you're new to self-employment and you're thinking about working through your own limited company structure, there are a few things you will need to do:

Step 1: The first thing you'll need to do is form a limited company. This will take 5 minutes and your company should be set up within two hours. The cost of formation is £125 plus VAT. We will also help you with VAT registration and setting up a business bank account.

Step 2: Invoice your client or agency (we can provide you with a template). Complete a straightforward Excel spreadsheet, similar to an expense claim form which should take about 15 - 20 minutes per month to complete.

Step 3: Forward any correspondence you get from HMRC or Companies House to your accountant and they will take care of it for you.

Ways to operate - limited company or umbrella (and the perils of IR35)

How much could I take home as a limited company director?

Contracting through your own limited company is arguably the most tax-efficient way of operating and, depending on your circumstances, you could take home around 75%-80% of the contract value. For more details, read our limited company vs umbrella company guide.

Will my contract fall inside IR35?

The only way to be sure whether your contract falls inside or outside IR35 is to have it reviewed by a specialist. You can read our guide to IR35 to find out more.

If I'm inside IR35, should I still contract through my own limited company?

Even if your contract is inside IR35, you can still claim travelling and accommodation expenses, 5% of your turnover, get the benefit of VAT flat rate (saving around £2000 a year), and get the interest on the funds held within your own company, so yes, from a financial point of view it could still definitely be worth it. Find out more about what being inside IR35 could mean for you.

What expenses can I claim as a limited company director?

If you are outside IR35, you can claim back anything that is "wholly and exclusively" incurred to carry out the day to day running of your business. This includes insurance, accountancy fees, travel and accommodation expenses, motor expenses, computer hardware and software, telephone, stationery, training etc. For more information read our full guide to expenses.

Here to help

Our accountancy packages include a range of services, designed to assist limited company directors in making the most of their careers. If you need any further help or advice, simply get in touch with us.

Let's talk!

Interested in finding out more? Speak with our expert Sales Team to see how we can work together.

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