Self-employed or running a business
Find out how to set up a business, including self-employment, and what your responsibilities are when running a business.
COVID-19 — financial support and how to work safely
Information about COVID-19 rules and financial support for businesses.
Setting up a new business
There are some things you need to think about before making any decisions about starting a business or becoming self-employed.
Questions to ask yourself before you start — business.govt.nz
There’s a 10-step guide on business.govt.nz to help you set up your business.
If you are buying an existing business
It can be cheaper to buy an existing business than to set one up from scratch. Investigate the market to make sure you’re getting a fair deal.
If you’re going contracting
You can also be a self-employed contractor. You’ll normally be paid more than a salaried worker, but you’ll need to pay your own tax, and you do not get paid for public holidays, annual holidays or sick leave.
Sorting out your finance
You’ll need to work out the money side of starting a business.
- Introduction to business finance — business.govt.nz
- How much money do you need to start a business — business.govt.nz
Pay tax and ACC levies
You’ll need to keep accurate records, file tax returns and make payments to Inland Revenue and ACC.
- Introduction to taxes and levies — business.govt.nz
- Setting up a business or organisation — Inland Revenue
You can claim business expenses, such as home office expenses, and deduct these from your income before calculating tax.
Claiming expenses — business.govt.nz
Get your business online
Having a website makes it easier for your customers to find you. Find out how to get your business online and how to avoid some common mistakes.
Selling on online shopping sites
Usually when you sell things online you no longer want or need, you do not have to pay tax on those sales. But, if you’re selling things on a regular basis for profit, you may be in business and you will have to pay tax.
Online trading: a hobby or a business? — business.govt.nz
Protect the data and information you collect
You need to protect data and information you collect about your customers and employees.
- Protecting business data — business.govt.nz
- Protecting customer employee information — business.govt.nz
If you do not take steps to protect your information, you could put your business at risk or damage your reputation.
Cyber security for businesses and individuals — Cert NZ
Advice and support for your business
There is help and support available for you and your business.
Grants and help from government organisations
There are government organisations that provide help for new businesses.
Contact a business advisor
An advisor can help you with planning for your business.
Help from Inland Revenue with tax
Inland Revenue has community compliance officers and Kaitakawaenga Māori who help small businesses with tax. Through Inland Revenue, you can request:
Utility links and page information