Hello Hello F22 crew!
One of the biggest hurdles being a freelancer is money. More importantly…How am I going to get the money I need to pay bills with? And how do I make sure that with a freelancer ebb and flow I’ll always pay my bills on time?
Trust me..I’ve been there and had the freak out about it. There are a thousand and one books about budgeting, but most hardly any of them address the issues that a freelancer has! These are some of the tips and tricks I’ve either used, or heard and thought were really good!
Put a buffer in your budget
I’ve been doing this no matter my paycheck amount of frequency. When I create my monthly budget I like to put in buffers for the amount owed and the date it is owed. This means if my power bill is usually around $130 and due on the 7th…I tell myself and write down that it’s $150 and due on the 1st. Why do I do this? Well simply put…shit happens. Having $20 and an extra week to make a bill came be a huge benefit! If a client pays late, or only pays partially you’ve put enough of a buffer in to make up the difference. It may mean selling that extra TV…but hey you’ll still have power.
The obvious….start with some padding
Have enough saved up to cover bills for 3/6/12 months…or whatever you can manage. Then when you hit a dry spell you can draw from that until the next windfall. Obviously you want to make more than your bills each month so you can save and spend, but a security net is 100% necessary.
Pay Attention to the Tide
Pay attention to the ups and downs during the year in your industry. Often times there are very cut and dry times when people are wanting to hire freelancers and when they are not. If you can plan for this you can do extra work while it’s available, and maybe schedule your vacations or building a new project during the lower working times. This gives you built in financial padding, and makes you take some time off-Which many self employed people rarely do.
Use an App
App’s have come a long way! If you’re comfortable using banking apps there are so many that can help you. Some ,like Godaddy BookKeeping, can take out taxes from your bank account, or just help you keep track of expenses. Others ,like Qapital will take out pennies each day, that over time add up to a large amount. One time I forgot about Qapital for a few months only to find out it had collected over $900 without me noticing! That can be extremely helpful if you’re in a tight spot, or just want to treat yourself after a hard work week. Try Qapital out and use code f692j8gh and we both get a $20 bonus at sign up!