The Scourge of “Mates Rates”

Self Employment Tax Form - Schedule SE

Self Employment Tax Form – Schedule SE (Photo credit: Philip Taylor PT)

Friends & Family Discount, deal for a pal, Mates Rates…can also be described as Self-Employment Tax…

I’ve been self-employed for all of my working life and one of the most infuriating sources of profit sabotage and reinvestment limitation are the folk who believe that, because they have some kind of connection to you, they deserve to buy goods at cost price.

My Mother is the worst for this and, in fact, crippled one of my earlier businesses by blackmailing me into giving her quite a lot of produce at….wait for it…..LESS than cost price. I carried this curious notion with me as a youngster but it changed immediately when someone I highly respected said, simply;

“I find it hard to understand why you would be willing to go and pay some random fecker full price for this item and yet you’re not prepared to pay me, your friend, knowing how hard I am working to establish my business and how I spend my money.”

That was me told.

What do you reckon?

I reckon that “mates rates” should come into play, only, when the seller can afford to swallow the loss…..otherwise you ain’t no mate! Most of us will offer a bit of a deal to our nearest and dearest by default but it feels very disappointing when the gannets arrive, disguised in support, but expecting …..let’s face it, gifts! Don’t get me wrong, helping folk out is standard but it’s just this expectation of favours. I don’t think many folk consider that, basically;

They earn a salary and save money on the product from you…..whilst, you pay for the product and hand over some or all of your own income on the deal too. It simply doesn’t stack up.

Please think on it the next time you’re about to demand freebies and discounts from someone who is working incredibly hard and for whom every penny clearly counts. Self-employment is 24/7 not 9-5. We might be able to pay our own wages….after costs. Oh and no amount of flirting, giggling, imploring, back-slapping or charm will make up for the extra costs, (in other words, losses), or the head-tonked sinking feeling of being taken advantage of.

Unless, of course, we can come to some arrangement on my percentage of your hard-earned salary… we are mates after all, right bud?!

2 thoughts on “The Scourge of “Mates Rates”

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