The important things are...
You need to register as self employed with the tax authority (HMRC). This is easy we can guide you through this process.
Keep a simple record of your outgoings and income. Paper records are just fine but this is where a spreadsheet on your computer will really help. Keep it as simple as possible with just the date, amount, who and what - for both outgoings and income. We can guide you through this process.
Keep all your receipts and sales invoices. You can't claim without receipts - losing them will cause losses - real money losses!
Do your book keeping as often as possible. Do it at least once a month, preferably more often than that (maybe when your bank statement arrives) If you leave it longer, you start to forget things and this WILL cause you to lose money in missed tax claims.
Set up a business bank account and don't mix up business and personal expenses, it will only take longer to sort it all out which will cost you in fees from your accountant and he won't enjoy it either!
Set some of your income aside for tax and 'contingency' payments. Many ventures fail because the money runs out just as they are starting to turn a profit.
One reason for an accountant is to make sure your records are submitted to HMRC correctly and to minimise your tax burden by making sure you claim as much as you legitimately can (but not more!). We would hope that the tax saving would be greater than the fees plus the effort you would otherwise have to put in yourself. So, if you need assistance with Self Assessments then make sure you get in touch with us today.
Tax Returns and payment of taxes are due on 31st Jan every year and there are late penalties. Getting your tax return completed before Christmas will also give you the benefit of knowing how much you will have to pay.
Enjoy what you're doing. Your freedom usually comes at the cost of hard work and long hours so if it isn't fun why bother? Actually, most self employed people are not vastly wealthier than their employed counterparts but most of them wouldn't go back either.