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How to Tackle Taxes with Confidence as a Freelancer

Updated: Jul 11, 2023

Hey there, freelancers! Are you ready to make more money? Well, before you start counting all those Benjamins, let's talk about everyone's favorite topic: taxes.


As a freelancer, you're your own boss - which means you're also responsible for handling your own taxes. And let's face it, taxes can be a real headache. But don't worry, my friend, because with a little bit of planning, you can save some serious cash.

First and foremost, it's important to know that as a freelancer, you're responsible for paying both the employer and employee portion of Social Security and Medicare taxes - otherwise known as self-employment taxes. This means that you'll owe 15.3% on your net earnings (that's your total income minus any deductions) in addition to your regular income tax.

The other major difference from W-2 income is that you may be required to pay taxes quarterly. I highly recommend hiring a tax professional, at least for your first year of freelancing. You'll have endless questions and a CPA can alleviate your concerns, ensure you are compliant, and help you plan for and submit each tax payment.

working at a table

So, how do you save money on these pesky self-employment taxes? One strategy is to set aside about 30% of your income for taxes. This might seem like a lot, but trust me - come tax time, you'll be glad you did. And hey, if you end up with a little extra cash at the end of the year, you can always treat yourself to a vacation. You deserve it!

Another tip is to take advantage of tax deductions. As a freelancer, you're eligible for deductions on things like home office expenses, equipment and supplies, and even your internet and phone bills. Keep track of all your business expenses throughout the year so you can maximize your deductions and save some money come tax time.

If you're a digital nomad, working overseas for at least 330 days out of any 365-day period, then you might qualify for the FEIE (Foreign Earned Income Exclusion), which can save $30,000+ in taxes!

work from home set up

And finally, don't forget to make your money work for you! Instead of letting your tax savings sit in a regular old checking account, consider opening a high-yield savings account. This way, your money can earn interest while it waits for tax season to roll around again.

So, to all you freelancers out there - don't let taxes get you down. With a little bit of planning and a lot of determination, you can save some serious cash and keep more of your hard-earned money in your pocket. Happy freelancing, my friends!

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