Becoming a freelancer and working from home is a dream many people strive for and, thanks to technological advances in recent years, the number of individuals making this change is on the rise. In May this year, the BBC published figures stating that there was a 74% increase in the number of home based workers from 2008 to 2018 and more than 1.54 million people now work from home for their main job role.
The benefits of working as a home based freelancer are plentiful; you get to be your own boss and choose the hours you work. Tailoring your working week to suit you, and not be tied to a desk from nine until five every day, allows flexibility, freedom and provides a better balance between working and home life. People are focusing more on their wellbeing these days and by cutting out the daily commute you can introduce a little more ‘me time’ into your day.
That being said, working from home does not suit everyone and you need to consider the disadvantages to this style of working before committing to it full-time. A home office can feel isolating and lonely at times so it is important to schedule sociable hours into your working week. Extroverts may not thrive off a quiet workspace and would probably feel more at home in a bustling office environment. Self motivation is another important factor; with no-one looking over your shoulder, you’ll need to be a self-starter to complete work on time.
Before committing to this new way of work, factor in these top tips first:
Find a Co-working Space
Co-working offices are a great way for freelancers to get out of the house and have an optional office environment. Connecting with like-minded individuals who are also working from home is a great way to build a community outside of office life. Companies such as WeWork have locations all over the country and offer a variety of memberships to suit your requirements.
Seek Additional Administration Support
Becoming a freelancer will mean you have more responsibility regarding work administration. You’ll need to file your own taxes every year and keep on top of all incomes and expenditures. You’ll also lose access to in-house office support which can be problematic when technology starts to go wrong. You’ll need to outsource IT support quickly and there are plenty of businesses that can help you remotely. IT specialists, such as smart computer repair, offer remote IT support and laptop rental, should you need any temporary equipment.
Establish a Routine
A good routine is key to being productive when working from home; it’s easy to slip into a more relaxed way of life which is unlikely to boost your career. Just because you don’t have to leave the house to go to work does not mean it’s a good idea to stay in your pyjamas all day. Wake up at the same time every morning and get dressed and ready for the day ahead. Try to start and finish work at the same time and designate a workspace away from any distractions; it’s the key to working successfully at home.