5 Common Money Mistakes Gig Workers Make

Money Mistakes

Managing your money is hard – but it can be even harder when you’re a gig worker. Lots of gig workers make money mistakes, especially when they’re just beginning their careers. Whether you’re new to your industry or an experienced gig worker, making smarter financial decisions can lead to greater financial stability. Here are five common money mistakes you should avoid so you can be more successful in your gig career.

Mistake 1: Only focusing on living paycheck to paycheck

Irregular income can make budgeting difficult, but you can budget effectively if you right-size your budget to your lifestyle. Don’t put yourself in a hole where you’re barely scraping by. And, if you’re in a place where you need to live paycheck to paycheck, figure out what you need to do to get out of it.

Make a budget to determine how much you need to make each month to cover all expenses and generate savings. Your budget should include everything. This includes things like food to transportation, rent, groceries, utilities. And, don’t forget things like gifts for holidays and things you do for fun (going out to the movies, buying clothes, etc).

Your budget should also include some amount of money set aside each month for your savings. Once you know how much you need to make, establish a work schedule that will help you meet these goals.

Mistake 2: Not considering longer-term career options

It’s tempting to jump from gig to gig without thought of the future, but it’s important to consider the reputation you’re building. Look for ongoing work with one or more reliable companies is a great idea. It can provide enough stable income for you to enjoy better quality of life.

If you can turn a temporary job into a full-time job or a position where you get rehired, your resume and your wallet will thank you.

Mistake 3: Expecting bonuses or holiday pay

Gig workers are most often independent contractors and aren’t covered by the protections afforded to employees. This can lead to confusion around bonuses, holiday pay and overtime. If you aren’t sure, ask the questions before you work so you aren’t expecting a bigger paycheck than you’re actually going to receive.

Mistake 4: Not using a reliable banking option

It’s tempting to opt for cash or just throw money into a prepaid card. But, having a reliable banking option can simplify your financial life.

Mistake 5: Spending without careful consideration

From everyday expenses like gas and food, to longer-term investments, it’s worth your while to make your money work as hard as it can. Getting cash back on everyday expenses like gas can really add up, and you can use that money elsewhere.

About the Author: Kathryn Elwell grew up in the Midwest. She has experience in management and human resources, and has been writing on these topics and more for 12 years.

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