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Tax Talk: Starting a new business? (3)

Starting a new business

Starting a new business in Australia involves several key steps and considerations to ensure compliance and set a solid foundation for success. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the process:


1.         Business Idea and Plan Begin with a clear business idea

What product or service will you offer? Who is your target market? Conduct market research to validate your idea and understand your competition. Develop a business plan that outlines your business goals, strategies, and financial projections. This document is crucial for guiding your decisions and attracting investors or loans. In our experience, business plans are not always set out on paper, but having some form of plan is always essential.


2.         Choose a Business Structure Decide on the most suitable business structure

Common types of legal structure include sole trader, partnership, company, or trust. Each has different legal and tax implications. For instance, a sole trader is the simplest and most cost effective form, but a company provides limited liability protection.


3.         Register Your Business

Obtain an Australian Business Number (ABN), a unique 11-digit number that identifies your business. Register your business name with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) unless you trade under your own name. Consider registering your domain name if you plan to set up a website.


4.         Understand Tax Obligations

Familiarise yourself with the tax obligations relevant to your chosen business structure. These may include Goods and Services Tax (GST), Pay As You Go (PAYG) withholding, and Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT). Register for GST if your annual turnover is expected to be over $75,000.


5.         Licenses and Permits

Depending on the nature of your business, you may need specific licenses or permits. Check with your local council and industry-specific regulatory bodies to ensure you comply with all legal requirements. For example, if you are considering opening a restaurant, you may need a permit to operate an outdoor dining area and a separate licence to serve liquor.


6.         Business Banking and Finance

Set up a business bank account to manage finances separately from personal funds. This simplifies accounting and tax reporting. Assess your capital needs. If you need funding, explore options like business loans, grants, or investor funding.


7.         Location and Equipment

Choose a location that suits your business type, target market, and budget. Whether it’s a retail space, office, or home-based operation, ensure the location complies with zoning laws. Purchase or lease the necessary equipment to operate your business.


8.         Insurances

Protect your business with the appropriate insurance. Common types include public liability, professional indemnity, and workers’ compensation if you employ people. Insurance can safeguard against various risks, from property damage to legal liability.


9.         Hiring Employees

If you plan to hire employees, understand your obligations as an employer. Register for PAYG withholding to deduct tax from employee wages. Set up workers’ compensation insurance and superannuation payments. Familiarise yourself with the Fair Work Act to ensure compliance with employment laws.


10.   Marketing and Sales

Develop a marketing plan to reach your target audience. This could include online marketing, social media, print advertising, or networking events. Establish sales processes and customer service practices to start building a customer base.


11.   Continuous Learning and Support

Stay informed about changes in your industry and business environment. Utilise resources like the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and business.gov.au for guidance and support. Consider engaging us as a mentor or business advisor for expert advice.


To summarise, starting a business requires careful planning and compliance with various regulations. By following these steps, you can establish a robust framework for your business, positioning it for growth and success. Always seek advice from professionals like accountants and lawyers to tailor these steps to your situation.

If you are in a position where you require further information regarding your new business, please reach out to us via our [Contact Us] form. Alternatively, you can call us on # (02) 4319 4910 our visit our offices which are open 9 AM – 5PM Monday to Friday.




Please note, this article does not take into consideration your specific objectives, financial situation or needs and is to be taken and read as general information only. Tax Stuff Pty Ltd does not accept liability for any use of this information; before acting on any information contained in this article, please consult with a registered tax agent, taking into consideration your specific circumstances. If you do not have a registered tax agent and require more specific advice relating to your circumstances, please [Contact Us Here].

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