Being a freelancer has many advantages. You are your own boss, you can organize your own time, you might even earn more than you would as an employee and you choose your own assignments. It is no coincidence that in 2021 as many as 1.1 million Dutch people earned their money as freelancers. That's 12% of all people working! But as a freelancer you sometimes run into difficulties. We list four common traps for you:
1. You say 'yes' to everything
A new assignment, but it doesn't really fit into your schedule? Can do! Move the deadline forward because the client wants you to? Should be possible. Send a quick quote to a friend of a friend? Yes, you can! If you are a freelancer, you probably recognize it: you say yes to everything. And then you are still sitting behind your laptop late at night, skipping your breaks and spending half the weekend emailing and calling. Maybe good for your income, but not so good for your work happiness.
2. You offer yourself too broadly
People sometimes have to guess what your expertise is and as a result you take on too much or take on work that doesn't really suit you at all. It's hard to be specific in what you offer, even if you obviously have an expertise. Maybe you make websites, sell handmade items, write texts or are an accountant. But as a self-employed person, it remains difficult to frame what you are and are not employable for. If you're quick to say "yes" to things, you'll probably also be quick to say "yes" to assignments that don't really suit you.
3. You do not properly lay down agreements in a contract
A brief assignment in between, an assignment that changes completely during the process, a verbal agreement with another freelancer. All things that you (probably) often don't document properly. It takes a lot of time and no one feels like doing it. Yet it is very important and can save you a lot of legal problems.
4. You do everything on your own
Perhaps the biggest pitfall of being a freelancer: you're only alone. Sure, sometimes you work with other freelancers or indirectly join an organization. And the freedom that comes with working for yourself may be precisely why you became a freelancer. Yet it also has tricky sides. You have to take care of your own administration, get your own assignments and arrange your own insurances and pension.
But, don't worry about your finances!
Because all of the above things take up a lot of time, take up space in your head and are not necessarily super fun, we are here to at least take most of your money worries off your hands. For example, with the Flow app you can automatically set money aside for the tax authorities, save for your retirement now and easily keep your business and personal finances separate. That way you don't have to worry about them anymore, and you have more time for other things.