March 21, 2016

The Pros and Cons Of Being An Independent Contractor

Millions of people make their living as independent contractors. Independent contractors are people that provide goods or services under the terms of a contract or verbal agreement, but are not employees. They are often referred to as contractors or freelancers and they work in a wide variety of niches.

Two arrows with pros and cons in different directions graphic

Independent contractors may pick up work as writers, photographers, private investigators, graphic designers, sports officials, shared economy workers, couriers, or just about any other niche. These independent contractors are basically self employed workers who run their own businesses on their terms. It’s a career move that is rapidly growing in popularity and it’s something that you may want to consider pursuing.

6 Easy Steps To Become A Freelancer

The biggest thing to realize about being an independent contractor is that you are not a full time employee, which means there are many things to consider before going the independent contractor route.

Here are the pros and cons of being an independent contractor:

PROS of being an independent contractor

  • You run your own business
  • You are your own boss
  • You develop a large professional network
  • You are the master of your own paycheck
  • You set your own rates
  • Your schedule is flexible
  • You earn more than 9 to 5 employees
  • You manage your own work contracts
  • You may be able to work from anywhere in the world

CONS of being an independent contractor

  • No job security
  • No benefits
  • No overtime
  • No unemployment insurance
  • No workers compensation
  • Must pay your own business expenses
  • Must find your own work
  • You need liability insurance
  • You must pay your own taxes
  • All work is contract based

It’s up to you to determine if you’re ready to go down the independent contractor route. It’s no easy task to run your own business. Weigh the pros and cons of being an independent contractor and give the decision some serious thought. Some individuals thrive as independent contractors and others do not. If you don’t you may want to find full time remote work with cool employers. Pick the career path where you are most likely succeed. Good luck!

About this Author 

Derek Lennon is a skier and writer who lives, works, and plays in the mountains. He travels the globe in search of snow and adventure. Life has allowed him to live and work all over the world doing cool jobs and loving every minute of it.

Sign up for our newsletter!