Will You Take Your Business Afloat This Year?
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Mon Feb 2, 2015 at 12:56pm

If you have dreamed of owning a narrowboat and also running a business from it, then Whilton marina can help you find the ideal boat.

Running a business from your narrowboat is not only rewarding but also a great way of life. The boating community is a tight knit community where you will become part of a floating family.

As well as businesses that sell products, there are other businesses that can be set up on a narrowboat from bloggers, marketing consultants, will writers etc.

Buying A Narrowboat to Run Your Business from

With up to 120 boats at our marina for sale at any one time, there is plenty of choice. We have a variety of narrowboat styles, lengths and prices to suit all budgets. You may want to start your search by looking at our website, where you can register for updates. We will then send you email updates of boats that come in that match your requirements.


The next step would be to come and visit us. We are a friendly experienced team and we pride ourselves in offering excellent advice and good customer service. The marina is located in the Midlands so is easy access from most places in the UK.

We are open 7 days a week and there is no need to make appointments; we are open from 9am till 6pm summer time and 9am till 5pm during winter time.

Tips For Setting Up A New Business.

In no particular order…

  • Choose a company name and then consider setting up a website to advertise your services/products.
  • Register a domain name and find a web development company to build and host your new website.
  • Set up social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter and Google plus.
  • Sort out Stationary and business cards.
  • Have a robust business plan.
  • Do your market research.
  • Know what area your business falls into and work out relevant environmental health, regulations and insurance needs for your business.
  • Apply for your licence from the Canal and River Trust.
  • Join the Roving Traders Association.
  • Set up a separate bank account, it makes doing your accounts easier. Most banks offer a business bank account.
  • Find an accountant to manage your accounts.

Tax & HMRC.

Don't panic it’s quite straight forward.

Example 1: You are selling part time and are PAYE. You will need to fill in a self-assessment form declaring the extra income you earn from your boat business.

Example 2: It’s your only income, then you need to register as a sole trader with HMRC. Again you will have to fill in a self-assessment form.

If you become really successful you can then consider Limited Company status and registering for VAT.

Keep your accounts in good order, this makes it easier to fill in your self-assessment form and if you employ an account it will help keep the costs down.

This information is from the HMRC website:

You must keep records so that you can fill in the return fully and accurately.

Your basic business records must include:     ·

  • a record of all your sales and takings     ·
  • a record of all your purchases and expenses"

More advice about running a business from your narrowboat can be found on the Canal and River Trusts website. There they explain what you need to do to get your business licence.

Note; This article should only be used as a basic guideline to consider. If you want to start running a business on a narrowboat, please do more thorough research before putting your idea into practice.