Advice for young person becoming an independent trader

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On 11/10/2019 at 8:51 AM, David Ayers said:

Good luck if you go for it.

Just be aware of how much profit you might actually make.

Unless you set up a limited company you are already paying 40% tax on any profit.

Add 20% Vat on your margin, difference between buying and selling price.

So if you want to walk away with £500 profit in your pocket by the time you account for all the prep, advertising, etc then you will need a couple of grand mark up.

I'm sure the OP will be declaring all his profits in full to the relevant tax offices.

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40 minutes ago, MattR said:

I'm sure the OP will be declaring all his profits in full to the relevant tax offices.


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Go for it if your young and fancy free. Some of my best days were the early days when I had my finger on the pulse of what people wanted and wasn't afraid to take a risk. Now I find I over analyse the pitfuls and potential for huge repair costs / problems which out weigh the potential profits and have therefore  become wary of the " interesting cars"   I built my business on the interesting stuff at the time Nissan 200sx / Imprezas etc. 

Have you looked into the JDM import market, it still intrigues me but I've never had the bottle and or sources to buy remotely from Japan! 

I have now gone much more mainstream which is boring, ropey profits but also big bills looming down the line on newer cars. Not a single call last week aside from the one about the golf I sold the week before  which now needs a new dual mass clutch, bang goes the profit from that one. 

Long story short I dream of a 9 - 5 with a steady pay cheque and minimal stress, which has certainly been a big part of being self employed for me for the past 7 years (at least) of the 14 i've been going for. 


The problem with the trade is you can get stuck in a rut where you occasionally "have it off" which keeps you hanging in there for longer than is good for you! 

Edited by Huggins

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On 11/8/2019 at 11:34 PM, MCC said:

Hi guys. As the title suggests I am a young person looking to getting into the car industry. 

im currently 22 and have trained as an electrical engineer and currently working for a big food and drinks manufacturer earning enough to put me well into the 40% tax bracket and working a 4 on 4 off shift. Sounds great right? No. I loathe the thought of going to what I consider a mundane job every week and although I should be happy, I’m just not. 

I have therefore decided that although against what everyone has told me growing up I’d love to do something I’m truly passionate about. That’s anything with an engine. I plan over these next winter months to develop my business plan and what I would like to achieve. As I work the shift pattern I do, I thought this may be a good way to test the waters and see if I can get it off the ground without too much financial risk, I.e still being able to cover rent and bills by having a steady income. I’m not looking to just be a regular side street dealer but a source of interesting vehicles such as classic USDM, EDM and JDM, although I’m fully aware that if it became permanent I may have to resort to this.

The only thing I am honestly concerned about is my age and I’d love to hear if anyone else started out on their own around this time and what sort of obstacles  you faced such as traders insurance and so on. would you start from home or go straight to finding a small yard to have capacity to hold more than 1 or 2 cars at a time? Any advice would be greatly appreciated  

I have started work on a website and plan on selling on most online car websites aswell as social media. I am fully aware of what a tough business it is, basically never not working and I’ll probably never be rich but I genuinely can’t stand the thought of working like I am for the rest of my life. The only downside is I may have to sell some of my current cars but hey ho beggars can’t be choosers. 

sorry for the long winded post 

"Hard earned gold quickly escapes those who fancifully wager it on propositions or business with which they are unfamiliar!"

I can only echo the sentiments of others about risk, so a question; how long has it taken you to amass the money you have to invest in cars? How would you feel if you pissed it away? Trust me, it's much nicer to have the money stare at you longingly but safe from a bank than it is from the needy bonnet of a broken car.

You have a skill few have so if you're seeking something motor related maybe you could use the knowledge you have but tailor it toward your interest and start studying electrical engineering in relation to vehicles? We all know the industry is shifting that way. Maybe start learning about hybrid cars/ batteries etc? Maybe you just like the idea of being self-employed? Couldn't you start a contracting company in your field.. get some work/ contracts... employ some people... buy some vans... grow that business - you're ahead of the game already in that you know the field.

Just my thoughts but your post seems more like a cry for an escape than a considered plan. Let me tell you, quite often I loathe the idea of my mundane job. The grass ain't necessarily greener chap.

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