Step-by-step plan to start your own business
If you have an idea and a business plan, you are ready to get started. Here we review all the steps you still need to take to set up your business.
You don't have an idea or a plan yet? Then first read on:
Start your business in 5 steps:
1. Get prepared
You ended up here, so you are already well prepared!
In addition to working out your idea into a plan, you should also check whether you meet the conditions to be able to practise the profession of your dreams. As a lawyer, for example, you must complete a three-year traineeship. If you work with food, for example, you must also hold the necessary certificates or permits.
In short, make sure that you are allowed to practice the profession. If you start up in Brussels or Wallonia, you will also need a degree in business management or sufficient practical experience, which is not the case in Flanders.
At this stage, it’s also worth checking whether you have sufficient financial resources to proceed to step 2: choosing your company form or legal status. Normally, you will have already done this when drawing up your business plan. Do you still need help in choosing the right company form? Then you can (virtually) go to a Securex business counter or to your accountant.
2. Choose a company form or legal status
Are you going for a sole proprietorship or for a company? If you opt for a company, you will also have to choose the appropriate company form:
- A private limited company (bv) – the former bvba.
- A limited partnership (CommV)
- A public limited company (nv)
- A cooperative society (cv)
- A partnership
Check here which company form is appropriate for you.
3. Setting up your business
In this step, everything becomes concrete:
- Open a business bank account with a Belgian bank
- Apply for a company number at a Securex enterprise counter or do so yourself online
- The counter also takes care of the mandatory registration with the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises (CBE) and can, if needed, also activate your VAT number.
This makes your own business official and known to the Belgian authorities. Did you know that, with Securex, you can already be fully up and running and legally compliant from as little as €199? Discover our starter packs!
4. Join as a self-employed person
Your business has been set up, but you have yet to join a social insurance fund. As a self-employed person, you are responsible for your own social security, this is no longer taken care of via an employer.
Depending on whether you start working full-time as a self-employed person, you will start either as a main or secondary occupation.
5. Arrange a number of practical matters
Before you get down to work, there are a number of things you should do. Let your health insurance fund know that you have started working as a self-employed person. If you have children, inform the child allowance fund that pays child allowances.
Finally, you can still protect yourself should things get a bit more difficult, such as liability in the event of conflicts or problems, or if you fall ill. As a self-employed person, you don't receive the same pension as an employee, so it’s wise to make extra provisions for this via a free supplementary pension for self-employed persons (VAPZ).
Once you have gone through all the steps, you will have set up your own business and started as a self-employed. Good luck!