Many ambitious professionals are turning to freelancing in order to advance their career and make extra cash. In fact, studies suggest that freelancers will soon comprise a majority of the US workforce. What’s more, there are lots of well-known benefits to freelancing. After all, freelancers get to be their own boss, set their own schedule, and follow their passion. However, it’s understandable for prospective freelancers to wonder about the financial viability of such a job. At the end of the day, can you really make a good living just by freelancing?
How Much do Freelancers Make?
Unfortunately, the answer to this question depends on a number of factors including your experience level, skills, personal connections, and industry. However, it’s not unreasonable for freelance writers, for example, to make anywhere from $40,000-$60,000 per year. And while that’s hardly an opulent salary, it’s certainly enough to keep the creditors at bay. It’s important to remember though that these figures are just estimates. Certain freelancers with highly sophisticated knowledge of an industry or web-design practice should be able to attract high paying jobs. Indeed, B2B companies will pay top dollar for freelancers who are familiar with an esoteric product like a chamber slide or a high pressure homogenizer. Alternatively, new freelancers without much experience and with few connections could find it difficult just to make ends meet.
Financial Drawbacks of Freelancing
While on paper freelancers may seem to make more money than their traditional, nine-to-five counterparts, the reality is that there are certain financial considerations that only freelancers have to deal with. For one, most freelancers operate as independent contractors. As such, freelancers have to cover all costs associated with their business, such as office equipment and startup expenses. Furthermore, freelancers are unable to access certain benefits like group health insurance, which are usually provided by an employer. Instead, they typically have to pay a premium for such services.
Do Industry Trends Affect Freelancers?
The short answer is that the fluctuations of the stock market and changes within a given industry inordinately affect freelancers. Harsh though it may sound, business owners will typically cut ties with a freelancer before they think about laying off any full-time personnel. On the other hand, freelancers can make a killing in a market that’s riding high while large corporations have plenty of capital available.
Is Freelancing a Good Idea?
In the end, each professional is different. They have different goals, dreams, and preferences. So while it is possible to carve out a career working solely as a freelancer, it’s probably a wise idea to take on a few side projects first before you commit yourself fully to this path.