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Planning Retirement Online

 Starting Your Own Business



Plant shoot in soil in cupped handsStarting your own business is becoming more and more popular amongst the over-50s and can provide many of the benfits that work can bring to us. Also, being self-employed allows us to be in control of our own lives and to do away with all those stresses of corporate life.


Consultancy is one of the most common forms of self-employment in later life. People use their skills and knowledge to pass on to others and it is nice to feel that all our experience is not being wasted. It does tend to be sporadic, however, which might suit some of us but not others. Other people take a hobby, something that they really enjoy doing, and turning it into a business. If you are good at, and enjoy, DIY, gardening, cooking, sewing etc you might be able to turn those skills into a business that will make money.


Some people have collected things all their lives (stamps, books, antiques, furniture, fine wine etc) and so know something about them. If they are starting their own business after retirement, then they take their interest one step further and start buying and selling these things. Other people start to buy and sell when they retire, or even before that, even though they might know little about what they are selling. With the Internet in general and eBay in particular, this has never been easier.

Setting Up Your Own Business


Becoming self-employed is a straightforward process and you can find out more information on the Government website. So take a look at  Gov: Start Your Own Business Article . If you want help and advice about the whole idea about becoming self-employed, you can get help from the Federation of Small Businesses or your local Chamber of Commerce.


Starting your own business isn't for everyone, however, and you need to be a certain kind of person to feel comfortable doing it. So think carefully about whether you will be able to cope with the demands of running your own company and whether you are temperamentally suited to it. Think hard, too, about whether the kind of business that you want to go into is one that is likely to succeed. To help you with this, take a look at this article:


You must remember, too, that there might be financial implications in setting up your own business. Many people go into consultancy or do work for people locally on a self-employed basis for which there may not be any financial risk involved. However, if you wish to be more ambitious and start a new business venture, then you should think carefully about the finances. It may be that you can use some or all of the lump sum from your pension or redundancy pay-off to put into the new business; some people even re-mortgage their property.


There are business venture organisations which may loan you money and you might like to look at the Business Capital Venture Association (BVCA). The BVCA is the industry body for the UK private equity and venture capital industry. The membership of over 360 members, represents the overwhelming number of UK-based private equity and venture capital firms and their advisers. The web site has a useful search facility to match your investment funding needs with potential investors.


If you need capital to start your new business, there are obviously risks involved and you need to think very carefully about the options and which, if any, are right for you. There is an excellent guide on funding for new businesses at


Some other potentially useful organisations for you to look at are:

Fredericks Foundation provides support to individuals who wish to start-up their own business and become self-employed. They aim to help people who often have nowhere to turn when trying to help themselves, or who are perhaps recovering from distressing personal situations.

NatWest Small Businesses section has information that will be of help to anyone thinking of starting their own business. This is a very good site with plenty of information easily accessible.

Enterprise Gateways  These gateways are planned to help entrepreneurs and new businesses in their development and growth. They include workspace, training, finance and mentoring.

 HSBC groups Starting a Business page. This is a very comprehensive site presented in a professional style.

HMRC. Information on tax for Businesses. You are encouraged to register with the Inland Revenue early when starting a new business. This section of the HMRC website is very helpful and tells you exactly what you need to do.



One way of starting your own business is to become a franchisee. Some large companies operate franchising operations whereby they provide financial, as well as sales and marketing support, provision of product and other ways of helping the franchisee run the business. The franchisee pays the company out of their profits and everyone makes money, if it goes well. More than 90% of franchises are still trading profitably after 5 years and you can run your own business with the professional backup of an established network. For more detailed information and to get a detailed overview of this type of opportunity, go to our page on Franchising.


Also, visit Franchise Directory for the UK and Ireland. It is a UK Franchise directory and information portal featuring over 170 of the UK's most popular franchises for sale. You can request free franchise information packs from all franchises.



Starting your own business in later life can be one of the most rewarding things that you ever do. Many people dream of doing it and many more are now realising that dream. However, it is not all plain sailing; it can be hard work and, at times, very frustrating. However, with the right help it can be made much easier, so click on all the links to get some useful information. If you decide to go ahead with it, the help on these pages will prove invaluable.


If you would like to do some paid work but would rather be employed, go to our Paid Work page in this section. If you would like to remain with your current employer, go to our Staying at Work page. If you would like to do some voluntary work, click here for some help. To go to the Introduction to our Work section, click here.

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