How much can I earn as a contractor?

Limited or Permanent Employee?

Firstly, let us say this is not SJD promoting or recommending that any contractor works through their own Limited company. You and only you can make this decision. There are pros and cons for each method of working and all personal situations are different. SJD offer both Limited Company and umbrella services, and therefore are one of the very few firms that can offer impartial advice.

Back to the question, "so how much will I take home as a contractor?" This is without a doubt one of the most common questions we get asked - not really surprising when you consider it’s one of the major reasons people decide to move from the world of the employed to contracting.

Basically, if you are a contractor working through your own Limited company your take home will be anywhere between 75% - 80% of your contract value, for example:

  • Daily rate £200 take home between £150 - £160
  • Daily rate £300 take home between £225 - £240
  • Daily rate £400 take home between £300 - £320
  • Daily rate £600 take home between £450 - £480

Any accountant or tax adviser will tell you that working through your own Limited company is the most tax efficient way of working, meaning you keep more of your hard earned money.

SJD's online contractor calculator provides an illustration of the maximum amount a contractor could take from their contract when working through their own Limited company. It assumes full tax planning and a number of other procedures are in place, some of which are quite complex and are best discussed directly with your accountant.

As mentioned, most clients and contractors working through their own Limited company take home between 75% and 80% of their contract value.

If you would like to know more about working through your own limited company please read one of our many FREE to download guides, speak to a one of SJD's Client Liaison Managers on 0500 152500 (01442 275789).

Other useful pages, guides and case studies include:

  • Take home pay calculator - How much could you be taking home
  • First time Contracting or Freelancing? - A summary of the alternatives along with pros and cons
  • Step-by-step Guide to Contracting - Download a FREE copy of our guide
  • Limited or Umbrella? Can't decide? - We help you decide which is best
  • Take home pay case studies - Examples of contractors using a ltd co. & umbrella co
  • Umbrella company guide - Everything you ever wanted to know about umbrella company services
  • IR35 Guide - A great plain English guide to IR35
  • Contractors Guide to Expenses - How expenses work as a contractor working through your own Limited company
  • Contracting Through your own Limited Company - A step by step guide
  • Take home pay Limited company or Umbrella company - The Real Story.
  • If you have any question about contracting or would like any further advice please either contact your SJD Accountant or call our New Client Services helpdesk on 0500 152500 / 01442 275789 or e-mail

    SJD Accountancy is the UK's largest specialist provider of fixed fee, limited company accountancy services to contractors and freelancers.

    We have been acting for contractors across the UK since 1992, have more than 12,000 clients; are the only national specialist firm of accountants with offices in all major cities; are the most recommended accountancy firm on the internet and have more qualified staff than any other specialist firm with qualifications from the following major tax and accountancy bodies - ATII, ATT, ACCA, CA, ACA, FCCA, ACMA.

    SJD Accountancy offers a complete package including: completion of accounts, payroll bureau, dividends, corporation tax computations, personal taxation,free bookkeeping software, unlimited access to your accountant and all company returns for a fixed monthly fee of only £110 plus VAT.

    We've have also won every relevant award possible, including: the 'Accountancy Age Award for Excellence' twice, once in 2004 and again in 2007, contractor UK’s 'Best Contractor Accountant', Sunday Times 'Best company to work for'; are a Quality Accountant as recommended by the Professional Contractors Group (PCG) and are recommended by the Sunday Times.

    Article supplied by SJD Accountancy – Specialist Contractor Accountants