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Business start-up checklist

Structure and registrations

  • Develop your business plan and financial plan
  • Decide on a legal structure
  • Register your business name in each state you will be trading in
  • If your business is a company, register with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC)
  • If your business is a partnership, create a formal partnership agreement, including a buy–sell agreement
  • Register for an Australian Business Number (ABN) at
  • Register for GST and PAYG, if applicable. If your turnover will be less than $75,000 per annum, you may not need to register for GST
  • Check with your state government and local council about necessary licences or permits
  • Register your website domain name
  • Join a trade association or chamber of commerce
  • Review your will and personal insurance to ensure they allow for a smooth transition if you die or become permanently unable to work.


Put business banking solutions in place. The solutions you choose will depend on your individual business needs, but popular solutions include:

  • A business cheque account for everyday banking
  • A high-interest account for surplus funds
  • An overdraft to cover any temporary cash flow shortfall
  • A business credit card for business-related purchases
  • An online banking solution like NetBank or CommBiz to give you 24-hour control of your business finances.

A business banker can help you choose the most suitable solutions.

  • If your financial forecasts identified a need for borrowings, apply for a loan or line of credit. Again, a business banker can help
  • Set up your financial record keeping system, including an invoicing system and cash flow tracking system. 

Set up

  • Choose premises, then negotiate a lease or purchase agreement in consultation with your solicitor
  • Arrange for business insurance, including public liability, vehicle, fire, burglary, professional indemnity and sickness
  • Arrange for connection of utilities such as electricity, water, telephone and gas
  • Arrange fitout and purchase business equipment, fittings and furniture
  • Buy stationery and office supplies
  • Buy supplies or trading stock and determine terms of payment, delivery and freight
  • Create an asset register
  • Begin developing written business systems.

Keep reading

Employee obligation checklist

From payslips to payroll tax, there are a lot of matters you have to cover if you're running a business.

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Buying a business

This will help you gather the facts you need before you purchase a business, including key financial information.

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New hire checklist

This includes creating a job description, interviewing and selecting candidates, making a job offer, administration tasks and induction.

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Related products

This a flexible, full-service business bank account that offers a range of transactions for a flat monthly fee.

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Self-service online savings account that pays high interest on the full balance when $10,000 or more is held in the account.

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A premium online banking service designed for businesses requiring multiple levels of user access and online management.

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From face-to-face terminals to online payment solutions, we have the solution for you and with access to 24-hour business and technical support, we're always here to help. 

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Important information

As this advice has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs, you should, before acting on the advice, consider its appropriateness to your circumstances. All products mentioned on this web page are issued by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia; view our Financial Services Guide (PDF 59kb)