Frequently Asked Questions
Whether you’re new to contracting, considering setting up a limited company or switching from your current accountant, these are some of the questions we are frequently asked by people looking for an accountant.
What will my take home pay be?
The amount you take home varies on each situation but we recommend you use our take home pay calculator first. But setting up a limited company enables you to take home significantly more income than you would as an employee of another company or under an umbrella company. When you set up a limited company you can become a company director, which allows you to pay dividends to yourself and claim business-related expenses. This can increase the amount of income you can take home.
Umbrella scheme or limited company - which is best for me?
The answer to this question varies based upon the length of your contract and amount of income you will be taking home.
If your contract is up to 3 months in length and your income up to £25,000 over this period, an umbrella scheme is the most tax-efficient method of accounting for the work you will be doing.
If your contract and income exceeds this, setting up a limited company is a more tax-efficient option as you gain added flexibility as a company director, which allows you to reduce your tax bill and claim business-related expenses.
How do I pay myself as a limited company director?
When you set up a limited company, you will need to appoint a company director who has responsibility for decisions about things like salary and any benefits to be offered to employees. If you appoint yourself as director, you will then be able to make decisions about the salary you pay your employees (including yourself) and the amount of any dividends paid to employees.
As these payments come directly from your company profits, you can pay yourself monthly or as often as you like.
How long does it take to set up a limited company?
Your company can be set up on our website or over the phone in a matter of minutes. It can take up to 24 hours before Companies House issues your certificate but while that’s happening we can help you with your tax planning and any other questions you have, ensuring you’re getting off to the best start.
Why should I join Cobia Accounting?
Cobia have been helping sole-traders, contractors and small businesses reach their full potential through time and money-saving accounting services, since 2008. Our friendly and flexible team work with you to identify the tax-relief you can claim and let you know exactly how much tax you need to pay so you won’t be hit with a large tax bill at year end. These are just a few of the services you can benefit from when you join Cobia Accounting:
- Your Own Personal Accountant
- Free Market Leading Accounting Software
- Full Company Set Up
- Annual Accounts – Preparation and Submission to HMRC
- Corporation Tax – Preparation and Submission to HMRC
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Does Cobia Accounting have an office near me?
Cobia is based in Capability Green Business Park in Luton, but because your accounts are online we can (and do) support clients throughout the UK. Skype appointments are also available and we typically respond to any queries within three hours (during business hours).
What is Kashflow?
Kashflow is our preferred provider of online accounting software. When you sign up with Cobia, we’ll give you access to Kashflow, which allows you to raise invoices and log expenses on the go. Once you do this, your accountant will have all the information they need to complete your tax returns and assist with your tax planning.
We also have an online portal available that provides real-time updates of company accounts, meaning you’ll always know how much you have sitting in your accounts for when you need to make those critical business decisions.
While Kashflow is our preferred supplier of online accounting software, our accountants also have experience using Freeagent, QuickBooks and Xero if you’re more comfortable using one of these providers instead.
What are the differences between the service packages Cobia offers?
We offer three packages to meet the needs of the wide range of people we work with.
Our “Starter” package is perfect for anyone who is just starting their company and needs help completing their annual accounts. We find this package usually works best for sole-traders and freelancers.
Our “Pro” package adds further services and unlimited access to a personal accountant. Your accountant will complete your company’s quarterly VAT returns and provide ongoing tax planning advice to help you reduce your tax bill. We usually recommend this package to contractors who have not set up a limited company before and need assistance with running a compliant and tax-efficient business.
Our “Exec” package adds further services again, including management of all invoicing, bookkeeping and references for visas, property, employment and more. This package also includes payroll for up to ten employees (including company directors), making it perfect for small businesses and startups with limited resources.
How can I switch from my current accountant to Cobia?
If you already have an accountant and would like to sign up with Cobia instead, simply give us a call or send us an email and let us know you’d like to make the switch. We’ll take care of all the hassle, making it easy for you to get settled with our friendly and flexible team.
Unfortunately your existing accountant may expect you to pay a fee to terminate your contract but at least when you sign up with Cobia, you won’t have to pay any joining fees, exit fees or hidden fees.