Key tax dates and deadlines for 2018/19
It is an inevitable reality that, for anyone earning a livin...
By Jonathan London on 14th July 2015
For those with the right mindset and skills, going freelance will be a dream come true. You’ll get to shake off the shackles of your permanent role, be your own boss, set your own professional path and make a living doing what you love.
Nevertheless, it’s important to be aware of the difference between dreams and reality, and accept that there will be some downsides to their new way of working. Going freelance can be enormously fulfilling, but it’s undeniable that there are a few unique perks to permanent contract-based roles that you’ll have to be prepared to sacrifice.
Before making the decision to go freelance, you need to give proper consideration to all of the advantages of being a permie and decide whether you’re truly ready to give them up before you take the plunge – after all, nobody wants to rush into a decision they’ll later regret.
The old-fashioned model of a “job for life” is pretty outdated these days, but there’s no doubt that working for an employer provides a certain degree of certainty and security that the world of freelancing can’t replicate.
As a permie, your employer is legally bound to provide you with certain rights and benefits that don’t exist for freelancers. When you work for yourself people can also quickly find that their business model might not be viable, in which case their enterprise can fold in an instant, with no advance warning or notice period.
These are all good reasons why many people remain in their permanent roles during the early stages of their freelance career to take advantage of that safety net while they still can.
A guaranteed steady pay and workload
As a freelancer, there’s always the possibility of hitting a rich seam of lucrative work and seeing the money roll in – but that’s tempered by the likelihood of an equal number lean patches where clients are hard to come by.
When you’re a permie on a payroll, you’ll receive a flat salary rate regardless, but when you go freelance you’ll have to be able to tough out these dry spells and work proactively to address them if you want to make ends meet.
Similarly, the only person controlling your workload as a freelancer is yourself, so that might lead you to experience some periods where you’re snowed under, and other times when you’re sat twiddling your thumbs. A permanent worker can delegate work or ask for help – you won’t have that luxury.
Supervision and protection
You may not always get on with your boss, but they fulfil functions that you might not fully appreciate until after they’re gone. When you have a line manager, there’s always someone to ask for guidance and assistance, to go to with complaints, and to take responsibility when something goes wrong.
When you’re working as your own boss, the buck stops with you, and you need to be able to cope with that responsibility if you’re going to succeed as a freelancer.
Paid holiday time and sickness leave
One of the major downsides of being a freelancer is that every minute you spend not working is a minute spent not earning.
As a permie, there are provisions in place to make sure you can get some much-needed time off for relaxation or recuperation from an illness without losing money, but freelancers will need to work extra-hard either before or after an absence in order to prevent it from blowing a hole in their balance sheets.
That can be tough for people who aren’t able to work constantly for any reason, and it’s something that’s worth considering before you make the jump to freelancing.
Separation between work and leisure time
Working a nine-to-five job can be a draining grind sometimes, but there are few feelings better than seeing the clock roll over to 5pm, putting your work stresses out of your head and going home for peaceful relaxation.
It’s a feeling that’s often denied to freelancers, who often feel they are always on the clock, with no clear separation between their work and leisure time, making it seem like their home is a workplace they can never leave.
You won’t last long as a freelancer if you aren’t proactive about creating your own ways of making your working hours and free time distinct from each other, and ensuring you spend enough time looking after your personal needs. The alternative is certain burnout, and the risk of turning your ideal work/life dream into a nightmare.
Take a look at our recent blogs below.
As a business owner, your time is way too precious to spend hours dealing with HMRC or Companies Hou...
Published: 14th May 2018
“Never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time” Charles Dicken...
Published: 11th May 2018
Congratulations! The very fact you clicked this far shows you are considering employing staff, and t...
Published: 17th April 2018
It is out with the old and in with the new when it comes to tax relief on childcare costs from April...
Published: 9th April 2018
The Boox accounting app has always been at the forefront of helping our clients understand their com...
Published: 26th March 2018
Spring has officially sprung and the start of the 2018/19 tax year is just around the corner –...
Published: 23rd March 2018
If your business is employing staff, you should already have a workplace pension in place, under the...
Published: 23rd March 2018
At this time of the year we are used to seeing the Chancellor holding aloft the red box ahead of the...
Published: 15th March 2018
A dispute has erupted between the BBC and 170 of its presenters over their tax arrangements and thei...
Published: 12th March 2018
The rush for taxpayers to file their 2016-17 self-assessment tax return is over for another year, an...
Published: 27th February 2018
If you are in the process of setting up a limited company or you are already the owner of an incorpo...
Published: 16th February 2018
If you need a little help to find the right accountancy service, don’t worry.
Get in touch with our friendly team for a FREE service consultation.
Thousands of contractors, freelancers and locums turn to Boox for help and advice with their limited company accounting. They love our personal service and app.
Specialist accounting for sole traders and the self employed, Boox combines easy online tools with expert support to take away the stress of handling your accounts.
Our combination of market-leading accounting software and expert personal advice gives you greater financial control and more time to grow your business.