How do I become a freelancer?

How do I become a freelancer? The roadmap.

reading time: 3min | #freelancers 1TP5Starting as a freelancer | June 13, 2018 | Daan De Bock
Would you like to become a freelancer but not sure how? Through this step-by-step plan you will be ready for your first assignment in no time!


1. Self-employed? Main or secondary occupation? Sole proprietorship or partnership?

Before you can get started, you need to cut some knots:


To become self-employed or not?

The first question you should ask yourself is whether you want to become a self-employed freelancer or not. In fact, it is also possible to become a "freelancer without self-employment status." In this case, you work through interim freelance agencies and work through payroll. The most well-known are "smart" and "tentoo." The advantage is that they take care of all the administration. Of course there is something in return, namely a percentage is deducted from your salary.

On the other hand, a self-employed freelancer has his or her own VAT number and needs to open a current account at the bank. Obviously, this also involves a lot of administration. Don't feel like doing this yourself? Then work via GIGHOUSE! All administration is on our account and completely free of charge. Nothing is deducted from your salary.


Freelancer in principal or secondary occupation?

You can be a freelancer in principal occupation if:

  • You are not engaged in any other activity in addition to your self-employment.
  • your income from another activity is less than the "minimum allowed for performance in salaried status."

You can be a freelancer in a secondary occupation if:

  • in addition to your self-employed activity, you carry out another paid activity in Belgium in which you perform at least half the hours of a full-time job.
  • you get a replacement income with which you build up pension rights.

Important: Keep the non-compete clause in mind. This means that your self-employed activities should not interfere with your main job.


Sole proprietorship or partnership?

Choose to form a sole proprietorship or partnership depending on what is most financially advantageous to you. This depends on a few things:

  • Nature of activities
  • Liability
  • How much you expect to earn

Consult an accountant for more information on this; the initial consultation is usually free!


2. Becoming a freelancer

Once you know exactly what you want, you can move on to action. If you want to become an independent freelancer, it's best to follow this step-by-step plan:

  • Choose a trade name.
  • Register at the enterprise office. An important prerequisite is that you have a certificate of business management or professional knowledge.
  • Open a current account.
  • Activate your VAT number, after approval from the enterprise counter.
  • Join the social insurance fund for the self-employed. They determine and collect your social security contributions.


3. Determine your rate

The advantage of a freelancer is that they have no office expenses and little travel costs. Still, it is important that you can make a living from it especially if you are a freelancer in main occupation. Therefore, be aware of rates and inform yourself about the advantages of an hourly rate or a quote per assignment. At GIGHOUSE you can always contact us with all your questions for first-line advice. Read more about your freelance rate.


4. Attract customers

Now it only remains for you to score assignments from clients. Therefore, work on your visibility through a website and social media. Through wordpress you can easily build a website for free.


Would you also like to become a freelancer, but not sure how to get started?

Click here and we will help you step by step.

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