4 Cash Management Tips for Online Freelancers
Freelancing has never been more popular. Offering professionals the opportunity to pursue their passions from the comfort of their own homes, freelance jobs come with a range of benefits. Depending on your career path, you may be able to choose your own hours, set prices for your services, and even make more money than you would in a traditional job.
However, freelancing isn’t without its challenges. You’ll need to learn to constantly cultivate clients, manage your productivity levels, and preserve a consistent income. If, like many freelancers, you’re keen to get started but worried about cash flow, the following tips will help.
Look to Credit Card Options Early
If you’re starting your freelance career as a student to earn extra income while developing your education, investing in good financial health is worth investing in as early as possible. While loans and credit cards should always be used cautiously, they can be an excellent resource when you incur crucial expenses like office furniture and equipment. Even as a student, if you know how to budget, you should be able to manage a credit card too. The key to success is making sure you choose the right card. Guides online can help you to find the right option for your needs, so you can start investing in your new business early.
Get the Right Professional Help
Freelancers often wear several hats in their careers. Suppose you start a business as a solo entrepreneur or limited liability company (LLC). In that case, you might be responsible for developing and delivering products and services, creating marketing campaigns, and even managing teams of employees. While you can add taxes and financial management to your to-do list, getting the right help is often easier. A professional accountant or bookkeeper will be able to help you pinpoint areas where you can save money by claiming expenses and reducing your risk of falling victim to fines. Plus, some financial experts can even provide tips on how to increase your income or revenue.
Undecided on which business type to start? We put together a guide on the differences between a DBA, LLC, and Incorporation.
Always Have Buffers for Emergencies
Freelancing might be a wonderfully flexible career choice, but also highly unpredictable. Just because you earn plenty of money one month doesn’t mean you’ll achieve the same income the month after. It’s worth making sure you have buffers in place to protect you. Whenever you make more money than expected in one month, don’t just reward yourself with extra bonuses. Put a portion of the cash you’ve received aside, so you have an emergency pool you can tap into when work opportunities start to dry up. Usually, it’s a good idea to have at least a month or two of income saved aside, just in case.
Plan and Understand Your Cash Flow
While your income might be inconsistent as a freelancer, your bills should be more predictable. Working in the gig economy means you must be able to budget your time for optimal productivity, and the same goes for your money. An excellent way to develop a solid freelance budget is to evaluate your monthly outgoing expenses professionally and personally. This will ensure you know how much money you need to earn monthly or annually to keep your business afloat, as well as how much you need to pay yourself. Looking at your projected expenses, you should be able to determine how much work you need to cultivate each month to make your business viable. You’ll also better understand how much extra cash you need to set aside as a buffer.
Cash management is the cornerstone of a successful foray into becoming a freelancer. Be it the responsible use of credit cards or saving up an emergency fund that you can fall back on if needed. Inconsistent income streams are generally the biggest hurdle to anyone striking it out alone. That safety net of a bi-weekly paycheck is the tether between our ankles and day jobs. However, planning ahead and seeking professional advice and assistance, coupled with good financial prowess, can provide the stability you need to break away from the rat race’s mundanity.
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