Self Employed Arboriculture Career
I’ve recently started an arboriculture career apprenticeship and have started as a sole trader with my own car and safety equipment, but otherwise minimal tools.
I was wondering as to my expected wage bracket compared to everyone else in the arboriculture industry out there. Also, what should I expect in relation to remuneration for risks taken, hours worked, etc?
I’m also saving 30% of my wage and was wondering if that will be enough to cover tax, GST and accounts preparation at the end of the year?
Simon’s Response to Self-employed Arboriculture Career
First of all, let me congratulate you and wish you well for your self-employed arboriculture career.
In regards to your first question about wages, are you asking what hourly rate should you charge yourself out at?
You say that you are doing an Arboriculture apprenticeship.
Does this mean that you are working for a company as you do your apprenticeship and also working for yourself as an Arboriculturist part-time?
You might want to clarify this for me so that I can help you further.
If you are wanting to know what rate to charge yourself out of it, that would be just a matter of finding out what the market rate is for arboriculture work in your area.
If you are still in your apprenticeship and just starting out in the arboriculture industry, you might expect your charge out rate to be less than others who have been in the industry for quite some time.
You obviously have some contacts in the arboriculture industry since you are doing an apprenticeship, so ask around what others are charging.
Putting your money aside for taxes and end-of-the-year accounts preparation etc. is a wise move as large unexpected tax bills have caused problems for self-employed people in the past. It’s difficult to know if 30% is enough to cover this as income and expenses vary greatly from one self-employed person to the next. However, it’s probably a pretty good place to start.
In New Zealand, you are only required to be registered for goods and services tax if your turnover is over $40,000 per annum.
You can choose to register if you are under $40,000 per annum but usually, you are better off to not register and this also saves you a lot of book work filing GST returns. But the advice of an accountant should be sought or alternatively to save yourself some money, start by talking to Inland Revenue.
Jake, feel free to come back to me if you need any of these issues clarified.