Freelance Pricing

05 Dec Freelance Pricing

Knowing what to charge for a project or service can be difficult for any freelancer. Generally freelancers have an hourly rate (check out my post on setting your hourly rate), project rate or day rate.

When starting your business you may underestimate the amount of time to complete a project. Be honest with your clients and explain the process to ensure you aren’t stuck working for free.

Pricing a Project

Fixed Quote – Firm price you will charge the client within the scope of the project. The risk generally lies with the freelancer for this pricing model as you can be stuck working extra hours if the time required to complete the project is required. Always nominate an out of scope fee when providing a fixed quote.

Variable Rate. This is generally provided as a project estimate. This arrangement places the burden on the client if the project takes longer than expected. Be sure to communicate any expected budget increase as soon as possible. Providing large unexpected invoices at the completion of a project can often lead to you being unpaid or disputes regarding pricing.

Fixed and Variable Rate. 

From my experience clients prefer fixed quotes to variable estimates to give them a firm indication of the project fee. When providing a quote be sure to specifically specify the inclusions and exclusions of a project to avoid excessive scope creep. By having an additional hourly or daily rate for certain aspects of the service gives you the opportunity to protect yourself for unexpected variables during the quoting process.

Scope Creep

Scope creep occurs when a project becomes larger or changes are requested outside the original services agreement. Scope creep often occurs in the following circumstances.

  1. The client doesn’t know exactly what they want.
  2. The client changes their mind.
  3. The client attempts to get work completed outside the original agreement.

Scope creep can be dealt with by having a solid contract or service terms agreement with a nominated hourly rate or fee for any changes outside the project scope. If the client requests something outside the project scope bring it to their attention immediately with a solution or additional cost to complete the service.

As a freelancer most issues regarding pricing and billing can be handled with a clear set of terms and honest and concise communication between the freelancer and the client.


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