5 Things To Watch Out for When Freelancing

When you freelance, you’re your own boss. That’s great for creating your own work schedule and making sure you enjoy yourself. But it can come with challenges.

Before you get too comfortable with freelancing, it’s probably a good idea to find out what things you should watch out for in this line of work. 

Here’s a list of 5 things to be wary of when freelancing. 

Underselling Yourself

The top mistake made by freelancers is underselling themselves. If you charge the lowest rate out there, you will be perceived as unskilled and will make it harder to get future clients. While you might think offering a cheaper service is better value, but most people don’t want to hire someone who charges less than everyone else as they assume that it’s too good to be true.

Not only should you be taking into account your experience, knowledge and the amount of time you devote to the job, you also need to factor in expenses such as the cost of any software or licences you need for the job. Calculate your worth properly and make it worth paying a professional.

Late-Paying Clients

Freelancers have a hard time getting paid sometimes. Late payments or having to chase down clients for payments can be difficult and tiresome. Clients who don’t pay on time, or at all, can cause real financial stress.

The general rule of thumb is fee payment upfront unless the client has been through a good track record in using freelancers for a long period of time and reviews indicate the client is good at making payments on time.

Sacrificing Your Health

You wake up at 8amand get lost in work, then suddenly it’s 9 pm, and you have been working all day long. It’s important you don’t get wrapped up in your freelancing career like this, and forget to take care of yourself with the proper sleep, nutrition, exercise routine and stress relief.

Life happens, and sometimes an accident or illness will lead you to need health coverage to help protect you from the hazards of stress. After all, a freelance career is just like any other career, and you should try and keep to a proper starting and ending time as well as taking regular breaks.

Costly Errors

When freelancing, it’s easy to get caught up in all the details. You’re getting paid by the hour, and your client might have a lot of questions and requests, so it’s easy to spend that time.

But there are certain types of errors that are extremely costly in freelancing, and you want to watch out for them. It’s also advisable to get professional indemnity insurance in the event you may have provided poor service, given bad advice or a dodgy design that cost your client money. 

Imprecise Client Brief

The most common pitfall that freelancers face is an imprecise client brief. A freelancer should always demand a detailed project brief at the start of a project, especially from first-time clients. 

Prior to committing to a project, the freelancer must establish as much detail as possible about the requirements, style, and tone of the work before they allocate time and resources to the job.


Numerous freelancers are unable to make a very satisfactory living because they have no clue how to avoid making costly errors and sacrificing their health. They forget to thoroughly scrutinise their clients’ brief and are constantly underselling themselves. 

Stay on top of the market rate of your industry and always make sure you watch out for the outlined pitfalls when freelancing.

Heron Nelson

Heron is a business blogger with a focus on personal finance and wealth management. With over 7 years of experience writing about financial topics, Heron has established herself as a trusted voice in the personal finance space. She has a deep understanding of financial concepts and strategies, and is able to explain them in a relatable and actionable way for her readers.