15% of Brit workers aiming to become self-employed

An irregular source of income, difficulty paying bills and inconsistent cash flow cited as top concerns by aspiring entrepreneurs

15% of the UK’s working population, equating to four million people, have ambitions to become self-employed at some point in the future, according to research from Aldermore.

22% of those surveyed said it had always been an ambition, while 12% are looking to take the plunge within the next six months and 25% said that it could take them five years to set up as self-employed.

Another 25% said it would take being made redundant from their current job to enter self-employment, with 20% stating that they would have to be unhappy in their work.

Respondents cited the opportunity to earn more money (37%) as the main reason for wanting to become self-employed – this was most prevalent amongst the 25 to 34 age group (48%) – followed by improving work-life balance (35%). However, 50% of those surveyed had not been able to make money since becoming self-employed.

Of those who are already self-employed, 93% cited being their own boss as the factor that makes their work most enjoyable, while 82% said it was feeling in control of their own destiny.

The report also assessed the concerns of aspiring entrepreneurs against the reality experienced by the self-employed.

For aspiring entrepreneurs the top worries were an irregular source of income (32%), difficulty paying bills (25%) and inconsistent cash flow (24%). In contrast, those who were already self-employed ranked an irregular income (55%), an irregular volume of work (52%) and not being paid on time by clients (44%) as top concerns.

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Charles Haresnape, Aldermore’s group managing director of mortgages, said: “Taking the step to become self-employed is a brave and bold decision and we love the fact that in the UK more and more people are doing so.

“However, we know that whilst it can open the door to many amazing opportunities, it can be a risk, with uncertainty and financial instability from start up.”


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