Freelancing versus Full Time Employment

There are so many advantages to becoming a contractor compared to working as a full-time ‘permanent’ employee, and at a time when employee benefits and salaries are being drastically cut, there has never been a better time to become a contractor.

At first, the idea of working for yourself can seem a bit daunting, however with the right advice from a good freelance accounting firm, you can rest assure that it will be a decision you won’t regret.

As with most things in life, there are of course some downsides to being self-employed. Firstly, you do not have the same benefits as a permanent employee, such as being entitled to holiday or sick pay.

There’s also the fact that you need to have the motivation and determination to get out there and find your own work, and then stay on target when you do get a contract, ensuring you stick to deadlines and don’t let you clients down.

The advantages of working as a freelancer

Starting a career as a freelancer has many advantages, mainly due to the fact that you are your own boss; therefore you decide exactly which direction you want you business to go in. There are of course many other benefits including the financial side of things, as well as the opportunity to gain skills and experience you might not have otherwise achieved.

As a freelancer or contractor, you have a lot more flexibility and freedom, which include:

• Being able to choose when you work, where and for however long you like. This is when, as a freelancer, you do need to make sure you have the motivation to keep your business going, if you don’t work then you don’t get paid…
• Taking holiday will be a lot easier, as you will not be in the position of having to juggle your days off around other colleagues. You can also choose to have as much time off as possible, instead of the standard few weeks in a year.

The financial side of being a freelancer also comes with brilliant benefits, such as:

• You are able to claim all of your business expenses against your income to further reduce your tax bill.
• An average freelancer rate can easily be double that of a full time employee – sometimes even more.
• You can set your own rates, which may include being paid for every hour that you work. Also, as a freelancer, you have the opportunity to work over time if you so choose.

Once you have decided to enter the exciting and rewarding world of freelancing, it’s best to seek out the best possible advice and guidance, and so taking on a contractor accountant will be really useful.

It’s especially important to take on an accounting firm that specialises in freelancers, such as SJD Accountancy, to ensure that you are given the best possible advice on issues like National Insurance, Corporation tax and the often complicated IR35 legislation; and to give you the reassurance that your finances are being taken care of properly.

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