As more people become self-employed we speak to a business selling expert about the trend – and find out what it takes to be your own boss.
Millions of people in the UK are self-employed and Sunderland is no exception, with thousands of small business owners and entrepreneurs choosing to strike out on their own.
But why are so many people becoming their own bosses and what impact does it have on the wider business market?
The number of self-employed people in the UK has been on the rise for more than a decade. According to the Office of National Statistics, more than 4.6million people were self-employed in 2015.
From April 2016 to March 2017, around 10,700 people in Sunderland were self-employed, according to the latest Labour Market Profile.
Michael Peel from Ernest Wilson, the leading agent for businesses for sale in the UK, has seen the increase first hand.
“In the current economic climate more and more people are choosing to take control of their futures. Become self-employed and their own boss,” he said.
“There are more buyers approaching the market to purchase a business which is good news for sellers.
“Banks and other financial institutions are becoming more approachable and are keen to lend money to buyers to assist in the purchase of a business.”
So what convinces people to give up the security of a regular pay packet or take the risk of investing in themselves?
Michael believes it is about the freedom to make their own decisions, as well as fitting work around family and other commitments.
“When you become self-employed you are only answerable to yourself or your business partners which gives you the freedom to develop the business as you see fit,” he said.
“There is nobody to answer to, you have the ability to make the business operation fit your personal lifestyle and you can choose how to run your business as you are the boss.”
However, anyone imagining a life of working a couple of days a week and watching the money come in should be cautious.
While self-employed people have more control over the future of their business, they lack the safeguards which come with employment.
Most obvious are things like sick and holiday pay and pension contributions but there are other factors to take into account before deciding to become your own boss.
“What you get out of the business generally depends on the time, effort and investment that you put into it,” said Michael.
“Due to the fact that you are the business, you may need to consider whether it is necessary for holidays or time away from the business, particularly during the early stages.
“Once the business is fully developed you may then have the opportunity to employ others who can assist in running the business and allow you time away for yourself.”
Ernest Wilson (ad ops please link to: https://www.ernest-wilson.co.uk/Buying-A-Business/is helping people in Sunderland fulfil their dreams of becoming their own boss and buying a business.
“We offer a free one-to-one consultation where buyers can meet with one of our business consultants to discuss their business requirements and tailor their search to find the right business for them,” said Michael.