British workers rely on hobbies for extra income

As the gap widens between wages and household bills, nearly half of all part time businesses owners claim they set up shop to bring in more money – on top of their day job.

New research from Aviva revealed seven out of ten people polled are balancing a full time vocation with the part time kitchen table business. Nearly 50pc plan to make their business full time, with one in ten aiming to be a fully-fledged business within the next two years.

The insurer’s bi-annual Pulse survey – polling nearly 4000 people – found the average turnover of a part-time business is £3,800 a year.

Hobby-based enterprises in the East Midlands achieve the highest turnover out of any other region in the country at £6,400 annually. The lowest figures came from Northern Ireland and the South West, where part time business owners see an average annual turnover of £1,680 and £2,780 respectively.

Robert Ledger, head of small business at Aviva, said: “If you are thinking of setting up a business it is really important to carry out research before you start to make sure there is a market for your idea or product. Setting up on a part time basis can be a good way to test the water to see if those business ideas can work on a larger scale.”

The three major concerns for these intrepid entrepreneurs were; not knowing how to promote their business; not generating enough sales; and not knowing how to manage their accounts. Insuring the business was also a worry, reports The Telegraph.

Islington-based Hannah Chaudry runs her own cake making business by night, while selling houses for an estate agent by day.

Her business ‘The girl loves cake’ boasts corporate customers such as telecoms giant TalkTalk, and she often bakes in the early hours to meet new orders.

“I made cakes for birthdays and other celebrations. Friends kept asking and it’s an expensive hobby so eventually it turned into a business,” she said.

“Setting up a venture while working hasn’t always been easy but I’m slowly beginning to master the business side of things,” Hannah added: “Getting to grips with these new challenges has been a real learning curve, but I’ve found it extremely rewarding. I’d love to take the business full time, but for the moment my day job gives me an extra sense of security.”