Contractor accountants Leeds

SJD Accountancy is the UK's largest firm of contractor accountants providing tax advice to over 15,000 contractors, all of whom work through their own Limited company.

We have offices in Leeds and across the UK and have won more awards for customer service and accounting excellence than any other firm in the contractor accountant sector, including three Accountancy Age Awards, six Contractor UK 'Best Contractor Accountant' reader Awards and two National Customer Service Awards.

What's more, all clients receive their own dedicated accountant* who they can meet, call and email all for just £120 plus VAT per month.

The first thing contractors usually think of when looking for an accountant is to find a local ‘high street’ company, but they are rarely specialist contractor accountants, so may not have knowledge of specific schemes which can benefit you as a contractor. There are also telephone only and internet based contractor accountants, however we have always felt it's far better for clients to have their own accountant that they can meet up with even if it's just once a year to discuss their business and personal financial goals. Tax is complicated and sometimes there is simply no substitute to meeting with your accountant face to face. Your accountant needs to understand your goals and to be able to provide the highest level of tax advice, something we just don't feel can be archived purely via a telephone/internet only relationship. Sure we could cut costs and reduce fees by closing offices and going telephone/internet only but this would ultimately reduce the level of service we provide. It's also interesting that most telephone and internet only companies aren't really that much cheaper anyway.

If you have any questions about contracting or would like any further advice please call our new business team on 01442 275789 or email newbusiness@sjdaccountancy.com.

If you're just starting out contracting in Leeds, find below a few details which you might find helpful.

Contracting in Leeds

Leeds is the commercial financial and cultural heart of West Yorkshire and is often referred to as ‘the London of the North’. In fact, it is the largest centre for UK financial services, legal and business outside London. With a vibrant population that includes many different ethnic groups and cultures, Leeds is a very lively place in which to live and work. With manufacturing and mining at its heart, the city was once one of the industrial powerhouses of the North. And after a downturn on the 1980s, it is now rapidly progressing again with an especially strong service sector. Leeds now aims to be the capital of the North, with a 24 hour ‘European city economy’.

  • Leeds is particularly known for its strengths in the finance, retail and legal sectors, with many large firms in both industries being based in the city. Some of these include:Gordons LLP – One of the largest law firms in Yorkshire, Gordon’s has been in business since 2000 and is a Top 100 law firm in the UK. Clients include Morrisons, Next, Grattan and Halfords and the firm also represents many of the region’s most wealthy individuals. It has offices in both Leeds, Bradford and London.
  • Asda/Walmart - A supermarket chain that needs little introduction. Its head office is at Asda House in Leeds and it became a subsidiary of the American retail giant Walmart in 1999. Asda is the UK's second largest chain by market share after Tesco and promotes itself as being ‘Britain's Lowest Priced Supermarket’.
  • First Direct – This leading UK bank was formed by HSBC (then Midland Bank) in 1989 and was unique at the time in offering 24/7/365 UK call centres, one of which is based in Leeds, along with the organisation’s head office.

Typical rates of pay for contractors in Leeds do of course vary depending on individual experience, but as an example, an IT project manager might expect to achieve a rate of £380 per day, whilst a specialist programmer with a sought-after skill set could achieve rates of £420 per day. Most UK-wide recruitment agencies carry a number of Yorkshire-based contractor jobs, so try all the usual options and then search for Leeds specifically and the industry sector that you are interested in.

It’s also worth keeping an eye out in the local papers, with the best read being the Yorkshire Evening Post (www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk) and the Yorkshire Post (www.yorkshirepost.co.uk). There are also a number of specialist local job website's including www.myleedsjobs.co.uk and www.leedsjobs.net.

There are a number of developments happening in Leeds which will provide opportunities for contractors in many sectors over the coming months and years. Some of these include:

  • The Leeds-Bradford International Airport expansion - A £28m programme to upgrade airport facilities, creating up to 2,000 jobs and with a view to increasing passenger numbers from to 5.1m by 2016. Plans include a new two storey terminal building, a new airside departure lounge, expanded passenger security screening zone, and more shops and catering facilities.
  • The Aire Valley Leeds Enterprise Zone - A three year programme which will use a package of incentives to stimulate the development of four key sites, covering a total of 142 hectares of prime development land. The enterprise zone will act as a catalyst for the regeneration of the Aire Valley Leeds which, when fully developed, could deliver £550m of additional economic output and over 9,500 new jobs by 2025.
  • Leeds Arena - Development of a 13,500 capacity 'super-theatre' style arena on Clay Pit Lane, Leeds City Centre, to stage major concerts, shows and sporting events. Costing c. £80 million, the Arena will be operated by SMG Europe and contain a wide range of retail and leisure concessions. Construction is currently underway, with the arena due to open in Spring 2013.
  • Leeds University ‘Breaking Ground’ - A £300m programme of development which will provide staff and students with a world-class campus and secure Leeds’ place in the world’s top 50 universities. Main projects include a new £12m School of Law building, £12.2m swimming pool/gym complex, £12.2m Energy Building, £27.1m new halls of residence, £4.6m refurbishment of the Institute of Communications Studies and £28m refurbishment of the Edward Boyle Library.

There are a few pros and cons to working in Leeds. On the downside, it still suffers from a poor reputation as an ‘industrial, working class city’ and indeed some of the areas around the centre are still quite underdeveloped. But on the upside, it has an extremely vibrant nightlife, excellent shopping, a lower cost of living and beautiful countryside right on the doorstep.

For information on other regional contracting guides, see the links below (we will be adding more guides over time):

If you have any questions about contracting or would like any further advice please call our new business team on 01442 275789 or email newbusiness@sjdaccountancy.com.