3 signs your side hustle could be your main source of income

Are you one of the 47% of millennials currently freelancing? Are you thinking about taking your side hustle full-time?

Freelancing is taking over the workforce. Results from the Freelancing in America survey conducted by UpWork and Freelancers Union project that the majority of workers will freelance in some capacity by the year 2027.

Of the 57.3 million people identified as freelancers, only 29% of them freelance full-time. This means more than 40 million freelancers are freelancing part-time or just to earn extra income.

But as freelancing becomes a more viable career option many people may find themselves wishing they could be self-employed full-time.

When is it time to make your side hustle your main thing? Here are 3 signs it might be time to take the leap.

1.     You have a base of loyal, repeat clients

The most important thing for any business is a customer base to generate revenue. If you have been freelancing for a while, chances are you have at least a few repeat customers. In fact, 52% of freelancers report that they most frequently work on projects for previous clients.

If you have a good mix of clients that keep coming back to you for your skills, that’s a good indication of your readiness to start working for yourself full-time.

2.     You have a plan and a process

Another key component of any successful business is a plan of how the business will grow. Many times, this growth is dependent on building a process for how work gets done. Sometimes freelancers, particularly in creative industries, can find it difficult to nail down a repeatable process for generating leads, making sales and delivering on the final project.

If you’ve created a plan and process already and can follow them consistently, you’re already a step ahead of some current business owners. For more insights on developing a freelancing project, check out this e-book.

3.     You could cut yourself a paycheck

Of the 17.2 million people that have reported leaving a traditional employer to freelance, 62% say they make more money as a full-time freelancer.

It’s not totally necessary to be making more money in your side hustle before you decide to make it full-time, though. Take a look at your income from your freelancing gigs and be realistic. Could you support yourself comfortably?

To really check your financial readiness, build a monthly expense calculator to see how much income you need to support your current lifestyle. This free online calculator is a good place to start but creating a personalized version in Google Sheets or Excel will be even more comprehensive.

If your side hustle is lucrative enough to cover your financial needs, that might be the clearest sign that it’s time to make it your full-time gig.

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