Would Monzo Business be suitable for me?

Just looking for some general advice here, if youi’d be so kind!

I use Monzo as my main personal bank and love it. I am full-time employed, but I want to try and get a business off the ground although I expect it will just be a side income. I am going to be offering electronics repair services and sell a selection of electronics components (capacitors, resistors, LEDs, mosfets etc).

I want to make sure I am doing everything properly, and I believe you can’t use your personal Monzo account to receive money from a business so I wanted to open a Monzo business account as a sole trader.

The application is asking me all sorts of things about how much I expect to earn and how much money I expect to go through the account, and whether I’ll be making international payments.

As I haven’t started trading yet, I honestly don’t know. There’s a fair chance I won’t make any money at all. I would be sourcing some components from China through sites like AliExpress but would be paying via PayPal, would that count as an international payment?

I am not an experienced businessman. I just know how to use a soldering iron and want to make a bit of pocket money on the side doing some repairs but I want to make sure I’m doing everything legit.

It feels like a bit of a catch 22. I don’t know how much I’ll be earning or paying in until I start trading, but I can’t really start trading without a business account because accepting payments into my personal account would put it at risk.

Am I overthinking things?

In an ideal world you would have a business plan which includes forecasted sales / income… but in your circumstances, you could go with what you would like to earn from your side income… what you think is realistic…

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Excuse any silly questions. I’ve always been employed since leaving school, never done any self-employed stuff or the like. How can I forecast sales and income without any prior history of trading? I mean, I think my service is going to be rather niche. I’m thinking of offering capacitor replacement services on things like the old Acorn Electron and BBC Micro computers. It’s not like there’s going to be people knocking down my door for the service, but hopefully enough to earn a bit of extra cash to help get through the rising cost of living expenses.

Like I said, I could just get started and see if there’s any interest and try to make a forecast from that but wouldn’t I run the risk of breaking the terms of service of my current account by using it for business?

You guess!!
How much do you charge per repair?
How many repairs could you do per month, given the constraints of time?
How much stock (components) will you carry? What is the markup on component sales?
How much stock will you sell? Check ebay (or similar platform) to see what are other traders selling?

It’s never going to be precise, but if you can’t come up with an estimate, nobody else can…

Maybe think about what your target is… £100, £250,£500 per month.

*** Don’t overthink it ***. You won’t be asked again :slightly_smiling_face:

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I think you are overthinking it , all Monzo are interested in is how much money / cash is going through your business account which is how much it will cost monzo to service your account. If you estimate £5000 a year and if you then do £1000 a year ,or £10000 a year it won’t bother Monzo - unless it’s all paid in cash.

A business account is a great way to keep ALL your expenses and income separate from your personal income for the taxman …go for it and good luck

I dont think a PayPal payment for a few hundred pounds will count for Monzos interpretation of international payments - I think if it gets in to the £1000s in and out daily, weekly, monthly they would become more interested …as always though keep all your receipts so you have proof linked to payments

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They’re mainly trying to ensure there’s no money laundering going on when you open the account. If you’re unsure on income then select the lowest option, and no for international payments. There won’t be any issues if you bring in more than the amount you selected over a year or take a few international payments, there’s no limits on the account based on what you select. If all the transactions were huge amounts or international from the outset they might take a look but with what you’re doing you’ll be fine :slight_smile: Good luck with the business!

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Thanks for the advice all, much appreciated!

However… my application for a business account was immediately declined. So, off to search for another bank I guess!

Thanks for the help anyway!

Maybe you chose the wrong business category… from memory certain ones are excluded … such as bidding fee auctions …

I’m an ex monzo business banker. For various reasons, moved to Mettle which comes with free Freeagent accounting software - absolutely love it, cant praise it highly enough. Think you might struggle proving your business credentials tho, but worth a try.