Reality Blog: 5 Tips for a Successful Freelance Business

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What springs to mind when you think of being a freelancer?

Working from home… working from anywhere in the world… flexible hours… working as little or as much as you choose… being paid amazing rates, perhaps?

Well, there’s no doubt being a freelancer has its benefits.

However, being a freelancer also means you’re running a small business. And running a business isn’t easy.

(A footnote. In case you’re not from the U.S., a freelancer is what we Aussies call contractors. I have to admit, I’d never heard the term “freelancer” until I encountered AWAI.)

I’ve run my own small business for over 20 years now and have a good working knowledge of the ingredients needed for a successful freelance business.

Here are five tips to keep you on track for business success.

1. Get Your Finances in Order

In my experience, the best investment any business can make is to employ the services of an excellent accountant.

Too many small businesses fail because they have no idea of their financial situation. A good accountant is worth their weight in gold. If you have to pay top dollar for the best accountant, then so be it. They will save you the cost of their fees many times over.

You need to look for an accountant with a reputation for honesty and integrity. Never be tempted to go with one who makes dubious claims about tax breaks you’re not really supposed to receive… no matter how tempting.

Why? Because ultimately, the responsibility rests with you, the business owner.

Once an accountant has completed your tax return, you’re the one who signs it as a true statement of your financial affairs. So if the IRS comes knocking, the responsibility lies with you.

Even worse, once you’re on the IRS’s radar, they’ll scrutinize every dealing you have with them. Not only is this stressful, it’s also expensive and time-consuming. Instead of running your business, you’ll be tied up in negotiations and never-ending enquiries from the IRS.

So choose your accountant wisely.

A good accountant will keep you off the tax man’s radar, be up-to-date on all the latest compliance issues, and minimize your tax bill… legally and above board.

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Andrew Murray

Andrew Murray

Andrew has traded the daily grind for a life on the road. He loves the lure of Australia’s wide-open spaces, solitude and isolation. Andrew and his wife Peta are experienced remote travelers, living the simple life on the road. They travel, work and live in their 4x4 truck camper. Andrew plans to build his Money-Making Website Top Wire Traveller to the point where it provides a regular income... enough to sustain their lifestyle on the road.

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