The number of businesses that have started since the start of the pandemic has shot through the roof. People realized how short life can be and decided to take their earning potential and work-life into their own hands. Here are a few stats to illustrate the self-employment picture in the U.S.:
- As of 2019, the self-employed section of the population accounted for nearly 30% of total employment (Source).
- As of November of 2021, there are 9.9 million self-employed people in the United States.
- 96% of self-employed people don’t want regular jobs (Source)
Sole proprietorship – There is no separate business entity. You are the business entity. That means your assets and liabilities are your assets and liabilities. Banks are more hesitant to lend to sole proprietors than they are for other entity types.
Partnership (LP/LLP) – An limited partnership (LP) has one general partner with unlimited liability and all the other partners have limited liability. Creditors can come after all of the general partner’s assets including things they personally own. Limited liability partners can only lose what they put in. A limited liability partnership provides limited liability to all partners. Profits are paid through on personal tax returns, except for the general partner – they must pay self-employment taxes.
LLC – Very similar to the LLP in terms of how profits, losses, and liabilities are treated. Profits are passed through to employees on personal returns. However, members of the LLC are required to file and pay self-employment taxes.
Retirement plan options
As a self-employed individual, you have a few options when it comes to retirement accounts – Traditional IRA and Roth IRA (available to everyone), SIMPLE IRA, Solo 410(k), and SEP IRA.
Traditional IRA and Roth IRA – Contribution limits up to $6,000 ($7,000 if you’re 50 and older). Withdrawals prior to 59 ½ are subject to a 10% tax penalty unless certain conditions are met.
SIMPLE IRA – available to employers with fewer than 100 employees. Contribution limits up to $14,000 ($17,000 if 50 or older). Employer match available.
Solo 401(k) – Contribution limit is $61,000 ($67,500 if 50 or older). Available to self-employed individuals and self-employed individuals that have their spouse as their only employee.
SEP IRA – Contribution limit is 25% of employee compensation up to $61,000.
Click here for more information about business retirement plans.
Be your own boss
You get to set your own hours and work with whoever you want to. There’s no one to tell you what to do and how to do it. For people that like to make their own schedule and like to go to the beat of their own drum, self-employment makes a lot of sense.
There’s no ceiling on your earning potential. You don’t have a salary range, you make what you make. You can make $10,000 or you can make $10 million. That’s a double-edged sword though, your effort determines your income. You will only make money if you work for it. Someone who isn’t a self-starter, should not be self-employed.
You have to pay for everything. Whatever the cost of business is for your sector or industry, that’s on you. Health insurance, you have to pay for that. There’s no business or employer that can foot those costs for you. Same with your retirement plan, a lot of employers offer an employee match. If you’re the business owner and the employee, ALL of your contributions are your responsibility.
6 Ways to Save Money When You’re Self-Employed
How to Be Self-Employed Safely and Wisely
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My name is Jacob Sensiba and I am a Financial Advisor. My areas of expertise include, but are not limited to, retirement planning, budgets, and wealth management. Please feel free to contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org