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Freelance PA rates

donkeyshrekmom · 09/02/2019 18:13

For the past few years I've had a very useful part-time job. Understanding boss, enough flexibility to work it round the kids at school etc. I've been earning £18,000 as employed member of staff, but working from home.

However, I'm bored and fancy a new challenge. A very interesting job has come up (I haven't been offered, but I think I stand a good chance). It would be on a freelance/self-employed basis. I'm a bit scared by this because jobs in my field (with the necessary flexibility to fit around kids) are hard to find and so there's a big risk in leaving a known quantity for an unknown one. What if it didn't work out? (It's a 3 month trial)? What if I didn't get enough hours and didn't make enough money? What if I got sick and couldn't work etc? What about no paid holidays?

Can anyone help me with the following:

  1. How much, freelance, would I have to earn in order to be in the same position financially as £18,000 gross. Taking into account I'd have to pay my own national insurance. And to account for - say - 4 weeks' holiday a year.
  2. Is there anything else, disadvantageous, I need to be aware of when exchanging employed for self-employed? I don't have a company pension (other than the minimum Nesta thing) so nothing lost there.
  3. What is the going hourly rate for a freelance PA? I've no idea what people charge. It's not just secretarial etc, but very much looking after the individual in question - running errands, etc etc. But they will be expecting, I'm sure, to pay professional rates for a top-end secretary (I have industry skills/qualifications which are essential for working with this person) who is prepared to do other stuff, not just an errand-runner, if you see what I mean.

    Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
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cannycat20 · 20/02/2019 14:48

This site might help you calculate what you need to earn, per hour, or per week, or per day:

I do some freelance work from home; I'm a qualified librarian (Masters level); languages graduate; trained as a teacher; very ICT literate; fast and accurate typist, with experience of using MS Office in all its ghastly incarnations plus lots of specialised library management system experience; worked in the NHS for over ten years so have good medical terminology knowledge; and hold various other assorted professional and academic certificates.

My hourly rate, depending on the job I'm doing, has been everything from below minimum wage (group transcriptions) to slightly more than £18 an hour. I gather if I was in some parts of London I'd be looking at upwards of £25 an hour for virtual PA work. I don't currently pay into a pension although I do have a couple of very small pensions from previous employers, and I'm hoping to be able to start paying into one again before too long.

You might also find this site useful, - however, I've been working freelance since 2007 now (from 2007 to 2013 it was alongside the day job) and my observations are: there is less work than there was; people can, or say they can, pay much less than they used to; for some of the work I do (writing), clients want to pay pennies for the moon on a stick, and since they can often get workers in lower-cost countries to do the work for pennies, many of them do; in some places the market is absolutely saturated.

Some work is still there but you really have to go looking for it...Good luck, anyway, whatever you decide.

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