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JamesH JamesH is offline
Newbie
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 7
IT Rental

Hi Everyone,

I'm thinking about setting up a PC & Peripheral Rental business in Oxford, catering mainly for the students. I know zilch about business in general but can anyone give me some pointers as to what I'll need to consider (VAT, registering company, book-keeping etc etc) to startup the business?

I'm very au fait with computers as I work as a software tester, so funding & maintaining the PCs isn't a problem.

The business would be p/t initially and I'd expect a low income to start with but to grow say after 6mths.

Thanks in advance,
James
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Waldorf's Avatar Waldorf Waldorf is offline
Maven
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 75
If you register online with Shell LiveWIRE at www.shell-livewire.org , you will be able to access a great deal of relevant information within the Be Your Own Boss section, including articles on VAT and Book-keeping.

If you are aged between 16 and 30, you will also be given details of a local Shell-LiveWIRE co-ordinator, who can help you to develop your business idea.

To register, choose 'Your Account' from the navigation options at the bottom of the web pages.
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mattstreet mattstreet is offline
Maven
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 90
Attn: James

Hi James

One thing to bear in mind if you are considering setting up your business for definate, is the price of computers etc, from the rental would you be able to recover the amount you have payed out to get the systems in?

I bought my computer from
Euro PC
They seem pretty good and they gave me a free 1 years warranty as well. They deal with end of line stock and refurbished computers, mine was a refurb. when I got it but I haven't had any problems with it - touch wood!!
Bear in mind though that their systems don't come with a monitor

I also have a contact who sells computers at wholesale and discount prices, send me an Email
if you are interested in a price on their systems.

Also, don't forget that new systems go out of date in a matter of months nowadays

Cheers
Matt Street
2cSouthend
UK Mobiles
UK Ringtones
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timbrown123 timbrown123 is offline
Maven
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 77
Hey James,

It's good to hear you're confident with your technology! Just a few things to think about: Will you check students' credit rating? Won't most of them be low? If a credit rating is out of the question then how will you be sure that a student hasn't asked you deliver a PC on the day before he/she is moving out? Fake student IDs are not uncommon so will you check their passport or some other official ID? Banks seem to be happy with 2 forms of ID, not including a mobile phone bill. How will you take payment? Credit cards will cost you and there's no guarantee that students will have them. Cheques are a hassle if you have to chase them and student cheques tend to be rubber. Perhaps you and your bank could arrange a direct-debit form? What if a PC is damaged or destroyed, who will pay for it? Most students won't be in a position to pay you back. Insurance is probably the way forward here. How many students will want a PC in their room in halls or in a rented flat? Don't forget that most universities have 24-hour access to PCs and students don't have to pay for them. Consider theft. Insurance again? What software will you provide? OS + Office? What is the licensing situation? Will you provide a manual? I'm sure many students will need a reference. Who will provide support, because students may well call you at all hours if a PC isn't working for them. You know how unreliable Windows is on Tuesdays, and any student who knows how to use Linux is likely to have already wired up their block with Quake machines. I guess this is where good market research will be invaluable. Of course, Oxford has one of the largest student numbers in the country which is great for you. The Student Mag, The Rag Mag, College & Halls event. You could design / print their fliers in exchange for publicity. Alright, enough already!
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JamesH JamesH is offline
Newbie
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 7
Thanks guys - your advice is much appreciated!

Cheers,
James
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