Four perks of being a full time freelancer

Considering going freelance full time? Here are four perks you can look forward to.

If you’re going to take the plunge into full time freelancing, you need to prepare yourself for the ups and downs, so you know what to expect. Here are four unexpected perks of freelancing that you might not have planned on.

1) You can save money

Work clothes are expensive – especially if you want to make the right impression in your office. Even ‘business casual’ can get pricey if you’re doing it right.

And while clothing might have been the last thing on your mind when deciding to go freelance full time, you’ll quickly learn that working from home and coffee shops etc, places much less of a burden on you to spend your hard earned cash on a week’s worth of dress attire.

You’re also likely to save quite a bit on costs like gas, parking, and car insurance, as you’ll be driving less. As a freelancer, working from home will most likely be your usual MO, and aside from a slight rise in utilities, it doesn’t cost a thing.

2) You’ll probably eat better

When you work in an office you usually just have an hour’s lunch brea. And unless you’ve prepared a packed lunch, that means foraging for food near your office.

And that means either choosing from the same tired selection of pre-made sandwiches, or being tempted to get a takeaway hot meal (or eat in). All options you’ve weighed up, and tried, hundreds of times.

But as a freelancer, your eating options are vastly wider.

To start with, YOU get to decide when you take a break to eat – and how long that break is. You also have a much broader choice of dining options. You can buy pre-made food from shops or cafes near you, or dine in.

Or you can prepare anything you like at home, catering to your exact whim and tastes, with the peace of mind of knowing how healthy (or not) it might be. You’ll also save a LOT more money.

3) You’ll find more time in your day

While many freelancers struggle with independent time management, working out how best to govern your time at your own pace is one of the best aspects of freelancing.

Half an hour to an hour to get ready. Half an hour to an hour commute into the office. Meetings that drag on all afternoon. Interruptions and distractions left and right. These things suck up a ridiculous amount of time during the day that you could certainly be better spent.

Let’s say you want to wake up and head down to your home office right at 9am – no problem! You could work from 9-5 without stopping for a thing if you wanted. Or maybe you know you’ve got a huge conference call later in the afternoon and decide to take an extra hour to sleep in, so you’re perfectly refreshed.

Or maybe there’s a local or online yoga class at 10am that you love. You can start working earlier and take a break for your class.

The point is that YOU are the one deciding how your working day is planned out. And as long as you meet your client deadlines, you can structure your working hours as they please you – working to your natural energy highs, social or family life, or changing whims.

4) You’ll network better

While you might assume that the best networking would come from an office environment where you’re interacting with lots of different people throughout the working week, this isn’t the case.

In reality, offices can tend to insulate you more than allow you to truly network. You’re at the daily grind with the same people day in and day out, and you’re not always meeting anyone new. You’re not getting into conversations with new faces about new opportunities.

You’d be surprised how much better your network can be when you freelance. You can meet with clients at a coffee shop. You can set up networks of out of state colleagues that you collaborate with on your own schedule to get things done.

You get to attend specialized networking events only for freelancers and business owners. Yearly conferences are a great way to meet and stay in touch with potential clients and colleagues.

There are plenty of opportunities to meet new people (and new clients) if you seek them out at grasp them.

So, as you can see, while freelancing definitely has its ups and downs, there are plenty of unexpected benefits to the job that you might not have even considered.

Rebecca Carter is one of the dissertation writers at UK Essays. She is fond of traveling and photography.

Photo by Annie Spratt