There are countless reasons why people choose a freelancing vocation. The chance to be your own boss, a flexible schedule and more freedom are just a few of those reasons. These and other reasons are worthy and tempting considerations for stepping into this arena. This can also overshadow and blind us from the other vital concerns regarding work as a freelancer. This includes the often neglected necessities like figuring out how to protect yourself financially in the event of a critical illness or accident.
Much like any type of profession or essentially everything in life, there are two sides to the coin. Healthcare is one of those less tempting aspects of freelancing, and if not carefully considered, planned and handled the consequences can be earth-shattering. Some reports cite that nearly half of the bankruptcies filed are due to a major illness. To make that fact more daunting, reports also suggest that the majority of those who filed bankruptcy had health insurance.
Those are definitely sobering statistics, but that isn’t the whole story. Anyone who endeavors to work as a freelancer needs to be aware of both the good and the bad. The good news is, there are plenty of freelancers who have created lucrative careers and have found insurance to meet their needs. Many of those freelancers have discovered a secret to that success – save, save and save some more.
Obviously as a freelancer, a heftier insurance expense will be expected. This is only one reason why saving money is paramount to success. Saving money is something everyone is generally interested in, but it can be the difference between success and failure for freelancers. That’s another big reason why saving is such a necessity, especially for young or new freelancers.
Your ability to find ways to save money is only limited by your creativity and imagination. The following are some practical money-saving tips, but these are only a few possibilities:
- A Pauper’s Life – No, this doesn’t sound like much fun, but sacrificing a little bit now for success and fortune later is more than a fair payoff. This is essentially a commitment to a lifestyle in what, where and how you eat, what you wear and even your leisure activities. In the simplest of terms, live beneath your means.
- Minimalism – In the same vein as a pauper’s lifestyle, your business expenses can also be a great place to save some serious money. When it comes to your business a common question should be asked: “Do I need this?” Will that $45 dollar cell phone meet all your needs, or do I need that more expensive phone? Do I need that office space, or can I work from home without sacrificing productivity? That question should be considered in every purchase.
- Eliminate or Reduce Debt – Initially this will require spending more money. There is an old saying that states the idea that you have to spend money to make money. Although that is the idea in the end, to begin with you will be spending money to save money. Paying off loans or credit card debt will provide a nice cushion that will be surprisingly appreciated, especially by new freelancers.
- Keep Perfect Records – It is no secret that the tax rate for freelancers is considerably higher than that of the traditional worker. Anyone who works as a freelancer or has attempted to will verify the necessity of keeping good records. When tax time arrives it becomes glaringly apparent that write-offs aren’t optional, it is a necessary savings. Young, new and struggling freelancers can’t afford thousands in taxes. Excellent record keeping equates to tax savings which means money saved.
- Smart Advertising – The amount of money that corporations and companies spend on advertising is staggering. One certainty that can be discerned from that fact is that advertising works, hence the justification for such monies being allocated for advertising. As a freelancer getting started, that kind of advertising expense isn’t realistic or even possible. Utilizing free advertising like guest blogging with links to your site and social media platforms are worth exploring.
- Emergency Insurance – Remember those aforementioned statistics about major illness and how it related to bankruptcy? Now imagine the scene – your booming business is creating more revenue than you ever dreamed. You are two years ahead of schedule and are beginning to interview people because your success is raging! Then, in the blink of an eye it is all gone. This acts much like paying off that debt, as an expense that may or can save money, or in this case, save everything. Companies like Emerge offer outstanding options with a variety of coverage options for various personal situations.
Congratulations on your decision to embrace the career of freelancing. The many rewards, satisfaction and freedoms afforded by such work is unrivaled. There really is nothing to keep you from the success and joy you seek. In the same way that failure to consider, plan and handle your insurance needs can result in failure, thoughtful consideration, smart planning and proper handling (like getting the right insurance policy) will lead to success.
That road to success is never an easy one, and getting there by way of the freelancing lane isn’t any easier, but worth it. From planning for the catastrophic by obtaining critical illness insurance to handling your operations in the most cost-effective way by cutting unnecessary expenses, people are finding the lives they’ve always dreamed of working as freelancers.
Not everyone is made of what it takes to have a freelance career, and only you can find out if have the right stuff. Just remember to do the right stuff like saving money, insuring yourself and your company and working hard. That is how the smart freelancer does it.