Budgeting Tips for Virtual Assistants or Freelancers
As a Virtual Assistant and Freelancer, you are managing your own income. This type of work sometimes entails certain periods where you’re busy and earning money, and others where you’re not making anything at all. You’ve got to become a budgeting pro to manage your income more effectively.
Here are our top budgeting tips:
Use a budgeting app or tool
A lot of people use a manual spreadsheet to manage their income. This is okay, but we suggest that you use a free banking tool that can automatically pull your banking activity. You can set up a budget, create reminders and alerts when you have reached your maximum spending limit, and pull reports for your record.
Track your expenses
Often people will spend on takeout’s, clothes and other items and not track it in their budget spreadsheet. If done, this distorts your budget and results in a lack of funds when you need it the most. Make sure that you track every expense, to the littlest details. As long as it’s coming out of your pocket, you’ve got to track it.
SAVE SAVE SAVE!
As mentioned earlier, since Virtual Assistants work on a project-by-project basis, you may have periods when you will have little to no income. Therefore, it’s important to have some savings to make up for these months.
Our general rule is that you save at least 20% of your income monthly. This should at least cover you during months of unemployment. But seeing that you’re one of our loyal readers and follow our advice closely, we don’t expect you to be out of work 😊
To avoid spending this money prematurely, put it in a 30-day notice account so that you can only withdraw after you have given a notice of 30 days. This notice should not worry you because if you know that you won’t receive an income in the next month, you will have ample time to withdraw some money.
Saving for periods of non-employment is not enough, you must also have emergency savings to cater for unexpected events. For this, you can decide how much you want to keep aside every month.
As a Virtual Assistant, you’re regarded as self-employed. Therefore, you are responsible for paying taxes to the state at the end of every tax year. Make sure that you factor this in every month by taking a percentage out of your income.