For many people, working from home is the perfect job. You get to set your own schedule, have more control over your time and energy, and can work in an environment that’s better suited to your needs.
But it’s important to remember that while working from home can be beneficial for some people (if they have access to the right tools), it isn’t right for everyone. Here are some tips on working from home as a self-employed freelancer or contractor.
How To Set Up Your Space, Even When It’s Small
There’s a lot of responsibility involved when you’re the boss and have to make sure everything runs smoothly. One of the first things to figure out other than where you will place the coffee machine is where will you will work. Here are some tips for working from home as a self-employed person, even if the space is small:
- Set rules for your household, especially if you have kids at home.
- Keep a clean desktop and inbox
- Create a work and play schedule.
- Limit distractions, and remove the TV from the room.
- Listen to music that helps with motivation.
- Turn off notifications on personal devices such as phones.
- Plan out your tasks ahead of time.
- Tidy desk = Tidy mind
- Prioritize your work.
- Separate workspaces from family spaces.
- Clean the house outside of work hours or at lunchtime.
- Use noise-cancelling headphones.
- Set aside breaks for yourself.
- Prepare meals the day before
You can keep track of working from home expenses using a spreadsheet or online services like Quickbooks. Each week, add up all the costs of running your business from home (including any bills) plus any extra cash spent on supplies or equipment like printers and office furniture—this will give you an accurate idea of what level of self-employment works best for you financially while still allowing flexibility in terms of lifestyle choices (e.g., if commuting time is important).
Working from home is great, but the expenses can start to add up. Fortunately, in most countries, the expenses are tax deductible. For instance, did you know that if you work from home in the UK and are self–employed, HMRC allow the self-employed person to deduct a flat rate each month for utility bills?
As we are currently facing a cost-of-living crisis, It’s extremely important to account for all expenses in some way.
Internet is essential for most people who work remotely from home. If the internet is solely used for working remotely it’s possible to deduct 100% of the price.
If the internet is shared, work out the percentage of usage. For instance, if you use the internet 50% of the time for personal usage and 50% of the time for business use, add half of the cost to your expenses form.
Knowing where to work from home is very important. Consider the furniture and workspace that you will need to do your job.
Computers, phones and printers are the main pieces of equipment you will probably need when working from home. I personally like to have pens and a notebook as well.
Electric and Gas
As the price of electricity and gas is increasing with no signs of decreasing it’s important to work out how much you use so you can deduct the cost from your yearly profits.
Can I work full-time and be self-employed at the same time?
Many people are self-employed, while also working full-time. You can be employed and self-employed at the same time. This would usually be the case if you were doing two jobs. For example, if you work for yourself as a hairdresser during the day but in the evenings you work as a receptionist in a hotel, you will be both self-employed and employed.
With the likes of Upwork, working a second job is becoming increasingly popular.
How to make working from home fun
There are many ways to make working from home fun.
- Create a playlist
- Schedule some zoom chats
- Start listening to Podcasts
- Diversify your working day and become an independent teacher!
Just because you’re working, doesn’t mean that you can’t benefit from some fun. Allow yourself to relax now and again, whether it’s having a laugh, or listening to your favourite podcast.
For most people, jobs take up a large portion of their day, so have fun and start to enjoy more of what life has to offer.