What Was I Thinking?

#OneADay10 – Disorganisation

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Taxes are a bitch when you’re no longer on the PAYE system. This is one of the things that I did not foresee when I resigned from the NHS.

I freelance. Lots of companies don’t want the hassle of dealing with an individual, so they prefer you to bill as a limited company. I set one up.

I own a bunch of websites, mostly monetised through Google Adsense but partially through affiliate schemes. This is in the vain hope that one day, someone will click on an affiliate link and proceed all the way to purchase with my tracking cookie still enabled, or within my allotted 30 minutes, or whatever the restriction happens to be for that particular program. Unfortunately for me, I only signed up with affiliate program aggregating company SkimLinks this year. What I actually have is 7 separate accounts with 7 separate affiliate schemes, all offering slightly different things in slightly different currencies. I also do the occasional sponsored post through ebuzzing and post sponsored videos from UnrulyMedia.

My websites are hosted with 5 different hosting companies. Some of them are UK based, some are US based – this means I get charged in US dollars. I pay most of my hosting costs monthly but one of them offered a significant discount if I paid 2 years up-front, so I did that.

One of my websites covers food and nutrition advice so I decided that the websites should fall under the umbrella of my limited company, just in case some fool reads something I wrote, gets fat or has an allergic reaction and decides to sue me. I’m still figuring out how to make that transition official given that all the websites pre-date the company.

The tax people tell me that I have to convert all the non-UK payments into their UK equivalents at the time of payment. The bank people tell me that I can’t view an entire years’ worth of statements online. My accountant tells me that there’s no “official” way to transfer ownership of a website from me to my company.

For an information manager, I have managed this shockingly badly. In my defense, this particular system has grown organically around 5 years of blogging and I never thought I’d be doing this full-time.

Morals of the story:

  • Don’t quit your day job in the middle of a tax year
  • If you really must do 1., earn enough money to hire a damn accountant

I may need to sell my websites to myself. Wonder if I can charge VAT on that…

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Written by Weefz

18 January, 2011 at 12:47 am

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