‘Banks don’t understand,’ say small businesses

Four out of five small business owners in Yorkshire believe their bank or building society does not understand the financial pressures they are facing.

Research found two out of five (40 per cent) in the region have sacrificed their own pay on numerous occasions.

Three-quarters of respondents said they rarely leave the house, as managing their business takes up so much of their time.

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The study, conducted by business energy comparison service SwitchMyBusiness.com, found more than a third (35 per cent) of businesses want the Government to introduce a higher tax-free allowance in the first three years of a business’ life, in order to ease the pressure.

If the next Government doesn’t introduce measures to help small businesses, 39 per cent of respondents said they would look at getting a second job, while 22 per cent would shut down their venture.

Ivan McKeever, chief executive of SwitchMyBusiness.com, said small businesses are “the forgotten younger brother of the big corporates”.

He said: “The picture from UK small business owners is clear: they want change from the government and they want more help.”

The firm, which surveyed 255 businesses with between one and 50 employees across the country, found a drop in business rates was top of the agenda nationally, backed by 34 per cent of companies. This was followed by an increase in grants and funding, with three out of 10 calling for this change.