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4 Of The Best Perks Of Being Self-Employed

Freelancing isn't for everyone, but there are a number of perks on offer for those who take the plunge into self-employment.

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Freelancing isn't for everyone, but there are a number of perks on offer for those who take the plunge into self-employment.

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4 Of The Best Perks Of Being Self-Employed

Freelancing isn't for everyone, but there are a number of perks on offer for those who take the plunge into self-employment.

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Since the financial crash of 2008, more and more people have left the rat race behind and registered as self-employed. The new gigging economy now accounts for more than 16% of the workforce. If you’re thinking of quitting your job for a life of pajama-wearing workdays, here are the top four perks you’ll have to look forward to.

Make more money while spending less

When you work for yourself you can set your own fees and work the number of hours that suit you. If you’re willing to work for it, you could stand to make around 45% more money than your employed contemporaries.

You can increase your fees with inflation, giving yourself the pay rises to match your experience, rather than being at the mercy of a struggling company or a greedy corporation. You might find you’re more motivated than when you were employed, as any extra effort you put in sees you getting 100% of the profits.

And while there are costs to factor in – you won’t be getting any more paid sick days or annual leave – you might find there’s more money left in the bank at the end of the month.

If you work from home, you could completely cut down on transport costs, and you’ll probably spend less on overpriced coffees and after-work drinks with colleagues, leaving your bank balance better off.

Take advantage of tax breaks

There are a number of allowable expenses that self-employed people are entitled to claim when they file their tax return.

This means things you’ve spent money on for your business throughout the year — such as transport, computers, stationery, professional memberships and subscriptions, and your office space (even if you’re working from home) — can all be claimed back, significantly reducing the amount of income tax you’ll have to pay.

A good accountant will be able to advise you on what you’re allowed to claim for. You might even be able to buy a brand new motorbike at the taxman’s expense.

Set your own schedule

Although flexible working is becoming more prevalent in the workplace, when you’re the boss, you can choose the hours that best suit you. Depending on the type of work you do, and your client base, you’ll have a lot more flexibility as a self-employed person.

If you don’t work from home, you can commute at a time that avoids heavy traffic, and if you do, you can start early and finish late or vice versa. We’re all productive at different times of the day, so you can maximize those periods of productivity and take a break when you need to.

For those with other commitments, such as kids, elderly relatives, voluntary work and hobbies, self-employment can give you the freedom you’ve always wanted to fit your work around the rest of your life, rather than the other way round.

Ease into self-employment

Unlike employment, where you have to leave one job completely to start somewhere new, taking a big risk in the hope it will be a positive move, with self-employment you can ease into it.

Rather than going cold turkey and quitting your job to set up on your own, you can start taking on work in your spare time to build up a client base.

When you’ve found your feet in the world of freelancing, you can hand your notice in, safe in the knowledge you’ve got enough work and contacts lined up.

There’s no need to tell your current employer (although some contracts might have conflict of interest/competitor clauses), and if you pay more into your pension than you’re earning from freelance work, then it’s possible you won’t have to pay any tax on that money either.

If these perks have got you thinking more about self-employment, it’s a good idea to seek out independent business advice before you make the switch.

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4 Of The Best Perks Of Being Self-Employed

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