Today, money management skills are more important than ever. Times are tight, and you may feel pressured to manage your money even more carefully if you are a temporary or contract worker. Whether you are a contract, freelancer, gig, or temp worker, here are five essential tips to help you manage your money more efficiently.
Tip #1: Ensure Steady Income
When you work from contract to contract or gig to gig, having a steady income you can rely on may be difficult. It is not impossible, however, if you plan ahead. Line up for your next contract or gig while still working to ensure a steady income as you transition between jobs. If you work contract jobs, you know when your contract will end, so start looking for your next position well before the current one ends. You can also work with a staffing or recruiting firm such as Beacon Staffing to help you find your next role.
Tip #2: Build an Emergency Fund
There will be occasions when you cannot find a new contract or start it on time. Build an emergency fund that can support you in between contracts. Aim to have enough money to support you for at least a month or two, preferably more if you can. You’ll likely find a new position well before those funds run out, but having plenty of money for food, shelter, and transportation allows you to choose the best position, not the desperate one.
Tip #3: No Big Spending
Contract and temp work are understandably unpredictable. Avoid making large financial decisions until you know your next assignment is secured. You may need that money if a contract falls through or doesn’t materialize for you, and getting back could be slow, complicated, or even impossible.
Tip #4: Consider a Second Part-Time Job
Though working a second job may not be your preference, having the reliable income earned from those 10-20 hours a week could be just what you need to get through a tight spot. Plus, many part-time positions have the potential of transitioning to full-time, if necessary. Additional work experience and skills may also be valuable when pursuing new contract positions.
Contract and temporary work allow you a great deal of freedom, but managing your finances requires some extra effort. Remember the above tips as you pursue new contract jobs so you can always be prepared and financially secure while you work.