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Ask HN: How much do you earn on average through software freelancing?
189 points by worldexplorer on Nov 7, 2016 | hide | past | favorite | 123 comments

I used to charge $50 USD per hour, but I kept upping my rates. Soon I charged $100 per hour, and then $125 hour. The highest I ever got for programming/consulting was $150 USD per hour, but I don't charge that anymore. I've moved on to day rates.

Now I bill around $800 per day, but I only work about 6 super-focused hours, and I use the Pomodoro method every day. My clients are happy because I get a lot of work done, and I'm happy because I have to work less.

This is just doing general PHP dev work (Codeigniter and Laravel frameworks), and if I specialized, and if I focused on the ecommerce or finance industry I could probably make more. Most my clients are in the Rocky Mountain West, and so far I have more work than I can finish.

So if you want to increase your earning potential you should:

  1. Specialize and master a niche.
  2. Network like your business depends on it. 
  3. Give free seminars and teach everywhere you go. 
  4. Label yourself as a consultant.
  5. Don't be just a programmer. Work with businesses and fix their problems. 
  6. Know your worth, and don't be afraid to charge what you're worth. 
  7. Anchor your costs against how much value you'll make your clients.
  8. Keep raising your rates until you can't get any work. 
  9. Work half as much as you used to. 
  10. And finally, spend time on things that matter like family, learning, and having fun.
Or you can keep competing against bottom-barrel programmers on upwork, and spend the rest of your life working for peanuts. Totally up to you.

Definitely recommend billing by the day (or even week). It can make a huge difference in your relationship with the client and helps get them past thinking about how much you work and focus more on what you accomplish.

On a side note I actually offer billing by the half day, but price a half day at more than half a full day. This is intended to encourage clients to batch up work rather than feed it to me in dribs.

Well done. Daily billing is loads better than hourly billing. I think I made an extra $10,000 in a year, just because I billed by the day.

And you are right. A day rate starts to shift the focus on the outcomes of the project, and less on how much it costs.

I'm 18 years old, doing full-stack web dev for ~2 years (Django, node.js, whatever.js, no wordpress stuff) and charge ~35-40 euro/hour while studying computer science. I get most of my projects through word-of-mouth and I'm currently trying to create products that allow me to build a small company - I'm partnering up with some software developers, entrepreneurs and a project manager.

It's not uncommon that web agencies in Germany only charge 70 euro/hour, so I would like to hear what's necessary to charge something like 100-150 euro/hour - seems like those rates are only possible in the US or doing specialized things like SAP consulting. It's difficult to compare those US numbers because the german system seems to be very different wrt salaries - 60-70k is considered good even for experienced developers, while it seems that those numbers are absolutely sub-par for US developers.

Would love to hear some tips on how to acquire new clients (especially in non-tech industries) and how to find interesting business problems to solve.

My strategy would be to reach out to local companies, analyze their businesses and build solutions that save them time and money (very similar to business consulting except doing software engineering) and getting inspiration for SaaS businesses. Would like to hear your opinion about this way.

For a student in germany that's a pretty good income. Think I earned less than 10€ at university back then :(

Regarding the question: 100-150€/h is not too unusual in the enterprise world. However it's more like what is paid to consulting/contracting companies than to freelancers. A lot of bigger companies that I know try to avoid freelancers nowadays and want to give contracts to bigger companies instead (e.g. for legal reasons).

My experience is also that high rates are mostly paid for some kind of generic or management consulting (not really technical) or if the contractor has a really great reputation at the company. For generic SW development your 70€ figure seems closer to the truth. For technical stuff the highest rates I have seen were for security related consulting and development.

>so I would like to hear what's necessary to charge something like 100-150 euro/hour -

Embedded, especially small footprint (32kb ram and that kind of thing) is an easy one.

Enterprise senior dev pays more than that as well if you are good. I ran gigs in Munchen for 150/hr and German friends of mine still do.

However 60k is that salary and is that gross or net? Think you are comparing apples and oranges; in the Netherlands, and Germany does not seem very different in that respect, if you get 60k salary, the company is actually paying more than 120k for you. So if you convert that to freelancing, you should be charging at least that 120k (which is less than 70/hr).

Go remote across the ocean to the promised land of USA. Things in EU suck for software-people.

Source: Have you ever read of someone making 200K+ in EU ? Me neither.

At least where I am from it is very strange for people to talk or write about what they earn. No one would tell you even if you would ask usually. Not that anyone would ask. But yes, have made that and know plenty of seniors that do. They would not boast about it though while, but that is the HN echo chamber maybe, everyone in the US spends solid amounts of time talking and worrying about it?

(it's the same in my country, about not showing wages). That just makes things worse for us software-people.

I didn't write about knowing anyone personally, just about reading on the web. Your message is the first one that I've seen.

Since you have a .nl domain, I'm a little surprised about it. (was excepting something like London/SW).

To be fair most of my paid work is DE or UK or NL enterprise. Those all pay well in my experience.

It is not so easy to legally immigrate to the US. It is long and involved process, and then you're usually more or less stuck with the company that sponsored you, at least for a while.

I meant it for remote. Which is also hard in it's own way.

Node/Socket.io|Sockjs/AngularJS Development from Italy - 2000$/week working 2/3 days per week. Made 5 figures with different clients on the last 2 years on Upwork and I'm really not a good English speaker. I think your 1. point is the key, especially if you are competing with bottom-barrel programmers. It is the thing that makes your proposal outstanding against the competition, even if you are not a good communicator, but you have to learn how to select your client or the projects.

I'm a seasoned node.js developer (since 0.1.30) and I'm specialized on the "realtime" web, (e.g. chat, push notifications, events synchronization ) and scalable architectures. For everyone interested, feel free to reach me out at pibi046(.at.)gmail(.dot.)com.

Nice! I too work on CodeIngiter and Laravel along with Angular and React. I live in India and the local companies pay peanuts, which means no local projects. How do I find more clients and projects in the US?

The best thing is to do is to build out your network. Keep reaching out to the people in the USA. Make sure your english is impeccable, as that will help build your perceived level of trust.

I suggest also getting out there more. Blogging works but you have to market your posts, and it's more long term. Teaching for notable learning platforms works, as well as helping to write public courses.

Anyway, the key lesson is to get out there and meet people. Then as you talk about what you do, and if you are good, you'll find work.

For the amount of effort blogging isn't a good payoff. My blog had 20k views per yr and yielded zero paying work.

Blog for personal fulfillment not monetary gain.


never met you - this is not bashing you - but I will tell you what not to do.

* do not call or email me weekly for years on end telling me how great your programming is. i don't care - i have too much on my plate already.

* do not join slack channels and pm each person individually telling them you want to start work on their php project.

these two things have turned me off of almost all developers who are not in my immediate area, but especially ones outside my country. please do not harass me. I've had more than a dozen folks - probably nice and well meaning - join our local developer groups and then email everyone in the group individually asking for work. I've had several more that would ping me every time I opened skype with "hello mr mike - we are ready to take on your next php project". Holy tamole... just stop.

What works? I've done a couple of small projects testing out non-us folks. These were either word-of-mouth referrals, or I'd found someone y their blog when searching for something niche. Keep a good clean blog, have a portfolio, build a network of folks who may read your blog or see your portfolio who may recommend your services. It's pretty straightfoward. Do not pester/harass me or my friends. It's the fastest way for me to block you.

> * do not call or email me weekly for years on end telling me how great your programming is. i don't care - i have too much on my plate already.

I receive too many random emails too. Absolutely annoying. A few weeks ago I received one that begin "Hello, I recently spent some time doing a site review of your website. (Yes, I do random site reviews for a living.)"

Wanting to call the bluff and wondering which website they claimed to have reviewed I replied "You don't say! What website are you speaking of?"

Their reply: "Thanks for your response. Actually i do email marketing so i usually send emails in bulk. I got your email id from domain directory, so i send you too. If you have any kind of requirement regarding Web Development or Digital Marketing please let me know. I will be happy to assist you.

Look forward to work for you!"

I knew it! My response: "Oh. So you didn't review my site."

Their response: "Thanks for your prompt response. I just reviewed your website, which is {real web site address}[1] and it seems that your website is in under process."

Do they also think I really believe their name is Steven Moore too? I wouldn't trust this person or company to ever do work for me...

[1] The site address was really there (not a template holder).

I once met a guy in a Starbucks in New Delhi. He asked me about my job. Me: "I am a software developer." Him: "Oh no! You are not one of those Indian guys who keep on sending Skype messages to everybody asking for projects and selling services? Are you?"

LOL. I agree, a lot of people engage in spamming others like that in India. A lot of people do just this (sending unwanted messages to "leads" on Skype , email, slack, whatever) as their day job to make a living.

I totally understand your feelings. I too have hired local freelancers in the past and I still get emails from them now and then. I always mark them as spam, but they tend to change their email addresses every time :(

keviv, i checked out your blog. please send me your contact details by email. :) thanks


Where do you get remote contract work from? Any website/agency that helps with finding clients?

Curious - how did you get things started?

If there are any programming/tech meetups in your area, go to them! Ask around for any work that needs to be done. Draft a quick talk on something you've worked on recently, and give it. Networking is a very powerful tool.

Thanks for the tips.

Very interesting idea on the teaching bit. It seems a great way to promote yourself.

Any tips for remote? I live in a far away country with no physical access to the US.

Sure, see my note to the user @keviv

We're a YC company that put together a visualizer for freelance engineering and design rates. It draws on a few thousand data points from our freelance invoice and contract product.

You can filter by location, type of work, and experience: https://www.hellobonsai.com/rates

To clarify, these are rates that freelancers quote via our contract tool and are paid for via our invoicing tool, so it's pretty verified. We also allow users to submit their rates, but we weight those much less than the data verified by client payments.

Your tool is gorgeous and the numbers seem on point to me. Is the source of this data Bonsai customers aggregated or something else?

Edit: I should read further down the page :). If you would like to add more insight still that would be great.

Curious, do you have stats for remote workers? I live in a far away country with no physical access to the US.

This tool is awesome. All the other surveys I find seem to hit the low end, but if this data is true, then the rates I've been quoting are spot on.

Thanks for posting this.

Back when I was freelancing, I charged around $150-200/hr for fullstack development.

I know this is on the higher end, but it is definitely possible to find clients that can afford this higher price point. I routinely took work from clients that had hired a cheaper team and weren't satisfied with the final product, needed someone to fix numerous bugs, or to optimize the performance of their technology.

Also, if you are interested in this higher price point, you need to be ready to truly partner with your client and help them solve problems, vs just writing code. This means embedding yourself in their team as much as possible (which can be done remotely; I always worked remote) and understanding the actual problems they had, rather than just building what they asked for.

On top of that, you'll need to own your solution all the way through. If your client doesn't see you as a lot of overhead, and you can act autonomously, then they'll be even more satisfied with your work and rates.

Could you share the tech stack you work on? Any specific domains?

The tech stack really, really doesn't matter when doing the kind of work he's talking about. The customer just wants to pay you money for something that works.

I charge $120/hour for development work. I specialize in low-level, performance critical stuff, lock-free algorithms, C/C++, assembly, SIMD code. But most of the work I get is typical full-stack web application development, with a little mobile stuff sometimes.

I charge half rate to startups in top accelerators, like YC, that haven't closed an A round yet. The idea is to build relationships with future customers that have lots of growth potential - but who can't afford $120/hour.


I made more when I was working full-time though.

This is interesting.

So you have a performance specialization AND do full-stack web development. How do you position yourself in the market place?

For example, most of my work is also fullstack web-development, but I also know how to build highly-available systems with Erlang/Elixir, but I'm not sure how to squeeze the latter into the messaging.

At a certain point, it becomes hard to market yourself in a way that maps to what people understand.

Imagine having a toothpick, saw, wine opener, knife, and other various tools. Now put them all into the very first Swiss Army Knife and try explaining that to someone. Who are you going to explain it to? A carpenter who needs full size professional tools won't need that, but maybe a soldier in the Swiss Army looking for handy tools to cart around in the field would!

Figuring out who needs your services is the first challenge. Maybe high availability systems and full stack web development intersects where people need a front end that ties into a reliable backend (querying a database, visualizing a system, real time analysys, etc.) That's your target customer.

Does your target customer have a name for full stack plus high availability already? To make something up, let's call it Full StackOps. Sell them your Full StackOps wizardry. If target customer has a different name for Full StackOps, you'll have to try to figure out how to tailor your message per customer. If there's no name, try making one up!

Or just generate referral for yourself, so anytime customers need a Full StackOps-like person, their first thought is to call you.

I'd say I'm still figuring it out. I think you can't really market yourself too broadly, otherwise people assume you're just padding your resume with buzzwords. You need to focus on a few areas, with maybe just a couple popular flavor of the month frameworks.

Know your customer, and market the portion of your skills that's most relevant to them.

I would go so far as to have two separate blogs/websites if you're going to market skills as disparate as mine.

I quit my 120K job for a long-term $75/hr gig. Turns out I'm making way less than I used to. Taxes are way higher and take too long, no benefits or vacation, have to spend more time on non-billable work. Client is a startup that's now running into financial issues of its own, so a raise is unlikely. This is in Kalamazoo. I have young kids and so can't put in a ton of hours to make up the difference.

Haven't spent enough time marketing, or really just don't know how to go about it. Living in small-town midwest it seems hard to make contacts. Everyone I've talked to wants to offer like $5000 flat fee for a week of work they need done (and we all know "a week of work" always turns into a month). Nothing long-term and nothing very profitable, so I've turned everything down.

In all likelihood I'll be back on the job market soon.

I mean, don't get me wrong, everyone makes mistakes, but you quitting cannot be a financial decision right? To make 120k, you need 15k day*rates to go. At 75$ for your rate, that's 200 days. With ~260 actual available days to work, you expect 77% efficiency? With the taxes, insurance and most importantly, the presumed availability of work .. There is no way.

I have been doing consulting for a while and as an advice, I would take the efficiency to be at most 50% so in OP's case would not accept less than $115/hour to quit my $120k job.

No, I figured I'd be closer to 90% efficiency. Little did I know. Also I was thinking I'd be able to bring on new clients at higher and higher rates, but it hasn't worked out that way.

Haven't spent enough time looking for new work, and whenever I get a new client it seems like my primary client suddenly has a big deluge of work that I don't want to forfeit.

There were other "life" considerations as well, but I thought the financial would be better than it is.

Before reading patio11: 75usd/hr

After reading patio11: 200 < x < 500

Then again, I don't only do software consulting, I ship (or fix, or optimize) solutions on time to help my clients make way more than I cost them.

Thanks, that made my day.

what is patio11?

Patrick McKenzie, prolific HN user and developer/entrepreneur: https://news.ycombinator.com/user?id=patio11

Someone who speaks LOTS of value, often. You would do very well to read his blog posts (kalzumeus.com) and follow his comments here on HN.

He wants others to be successful in their efforts, and gives lots of good info on how to do just that.

I'm a 21 year-old who has recently gotten into contracting to supplement my primary income (a Software Engineering Apprentice for a Defence contractor).

I earn £12 an hour for my contract work, which I'm quite happy with at the moment because 10 hours a week means I get an extra £500 per month (which is considerable at my age, it pays my rent and bills and some).

I know it doesn't seem much, but I think I'm actually quite lucky to be able to get a gig at my age with my experience.

Great to hear you are happy, but I do think you're being exploited. I'm pretty sure you can flip burgers for £12.

I hope this motivates you to ask for more.

I'm a little hesitant to ask for more, because I'm really not in a position right now (for a couple of months, anyway) to be able to afford losing that extra income...

I sympathize with that, but what you should also consider is that by greatly undercharging the market rate, you're actually depressing wages for other in your peer group.

and you'll just keep getting more low-end work. The next client you get, double your rate, don't even bat an eye when you quote it, and you'll be surprised when people say yes.

Thanks for the advice guys.

How do you get into something like that, whilst working elsewhere as a day job ? I'm curious how you'd start - I mean do you have an agent, or did you just start marketing yourself ?

I was referred by somebody that I know from Twitter...

charge more. like 5x more.


I'm a full-stack developer and I was working full-time till last month and freelanced occasionally. After leaving my job I decided to take up freelancing and currently, I'm making $35 an hour working on CakePHP/Laravel/Angular project which is low considering my experience (11 years). I usually charge upwards of $50 but this time I made an exception because the company is looking to raise Series A (which means more work at a better rate in future).

Last month, I got paid pretty good money for a React+Redux project.

Mail me at mail+efl@vivekgupta.com

I'm currently free for 20-30 hours a week and looking for more work.

I suggest you increase you triple your rates. Clients want good solutions to their problems, and a low rate suggests that you do poor quality work.

And if you are good, (which it sounds like you are), the only reason why you can't charge more is in your head. So charge more. Stop acting like some first-year freelancer and start charging what you are worth.

Thanks! Got your point.

I don't where you are located, but in the US, $35/hr as a contractor is absurdly low. Your take home is closer to half of that after you consider all of your tax implications.

That's true. I'm in India and I pay 30% of that as taxes. So, basically I make $24.5 dollars after taxes. I usually charge $50-60 an hour for PHP work and I charged $80 an hour for a small ReactJS project last month. The only problem is I don't know where to find clients.

I suggest you invest in yourself, and learn how to find clients. There's plenty of free info on doubleyourfreelancing.com, and I'd start diving into the blog articles there.

And if you want to invest in yourself, I wrote a course that you could take and it has a whole module on finding more clients. Don't feel pressured to spend any money, but I think it's pretty solid, and you can check it out here: http://freelance-college.teachable.com/p/freelance-college-w...

At the very least I have some lessons that you can preview in full for free (just scroll to the bottom).

Cool. I'll check it out.

I freelance on .net projects for 70€ per hour, now I also doing e-commerce for myself which gets me excited now.

Also busy with GPS webapplications on asp.Net mvc (embedded device who track trucks and the refrigerator °), WordPress sites, NodeJS ( MVP's),,..

I have a Cordova app before I go to clients, currently landing on too much work because of it ( it's a great conversation starter and builds trust). Will up hourly rates soon, but have a lot of work the next months ( mostly creating webshops for clients). I also work full-time.

My webshop currently lands me 500€/ month without marketing, it's something totally different than full-stack development.

I also did something with Pokemon Go to learn how Facebook worked. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12858993 i had the #2 fb page in Belgium. We did events to earn some money with it, it's the #1 rated comment ;)

Currently notified all me clients that i will probably have some delay, but nothing was planned for this month. I do put longer hours currently then i want for now, just to make sure everything will land on time... ( 16 hours per day at the moment, hope soon everything will be back to normal)

Also use a lot of jenkins and automation tools, i hate manual labor. My collegues use 4 tools i wrote for myselve every day. It just takes off a hell of time of lookup up usernames, passwords, phone numbers, logging hours, ... I guess you only need to use it in a "ux friendly" enough way, but just don't sink too much time creating it ;)

You'll kill/burnout yourself with 16 hours/day.

I hope it's only temporary, sunk too much time in Pokémon and my webshop ( got in the news 5 times, so it all had to go fast -- webshop + pokémon events - pokemon news - marketing - communication - following up/helping players).

I had a month delay on my projects because of it. The situation will improve soon in a month or 2. I also have a stressfull job fulltime ( team leader + .Net architect), but i can handle it. My dad had a more stressfull job then what i have, so i don't mind this. At least i'm able to take a break when i can. I just want it all finished on time.

Fyi, he was a veterinarian and sometimes worked 32 hours on a row. He's on his pension now ( works a lot less). I'm happier that i can choose my own hours and spend time with friends when i want.

> At least i'm able to take a break when i can. I just want it all finished on time.

If I learned anything working for myself the past decade, it's that you're never finished. You need to set aside time for yourself and others today, and every day.

Just because doctors kill themself working doesn't mean you have to. You can always be a gamedev if you want though.

I make $60/hour through an agency. I do this for 20 hours a week.

This is in addition to my full-time gig.

Assuming I'm booked eight months of the year, that's $38,400.

I could make more if I wasn't going through the agency, but for now, I don't have a name or connections, and I don't have the time to market myself.

So I figure do the agency thing first, build a name, then start soliciting direct clients. Then eventually ditch the full-time gig.

Honestly just stumbling through this.

What's the agency you go through, if you don't mind my asking?

It's a local one in Toronto; not one of the well-known ones online.

I am in Toronto. Would love to know the name, if you don't mind sharing.

Unlikely (s)he's interested in disclosing, judging by the throwaway name.

I'm in Toronto looking for agency work as well. It's been a while since I've done some.

Oh I hope that's not the case. They were asking others for help, it would be a shame if they were not willing to offer the same help to others.

My actual rate is 100 €/hr for developing work. I charge way less for skype calls, tests, discussions.

I am deeply embedded inside the small company I consult for, it is extremely nice because people trust me, are not in my way and are just looking for results.

Really happy, however since I don't only bring coding experience but also business acume I would definitely increase my rate to 150 €/hr .

People come to me with problems, I make sure they actually have that problem, I listen to the solution they propose, I actually make my own proposal about what should be done considering both business and technologies, we talk a bit, more problem or constraints arise, we tweak a bit whichever proposal is better and then I go ahead and I implement it.

Time spend talking between 10 and 30 minutes, client have its solution about ready the day after. We are both happy.

I wonder why you charge less for other kinds of work? It's still your brain and time they are paying for.

What's the best way to start freelancing? A few years ago I used a few freelance sites such as upwork but the pay was fairly low and the work was just around building wordpress sites. Any recommendations? Specifically for backend or fullstack projects?

There's interesting projects on Upwork. You just have to know how to search for them, "Other - Software" is one.

It depends. I work with clients and their budgets. Leaving money on the table doesn't bother me because I want long term relationships. For example, I'm wrapping up a 2 year project this month. Built the MVP all the way to two profitable product lines for the client. Super happy about it. I like to see my clients succeed.

My focus is building solutions to business problems. I don't look at it as software but solutions. When you approach it that way people are more receptive to what you have to say.

I don't reveal amount earned but can't complain. I bill monthly, weekly or per project and it works. Forget hourly. Either way, Im raising my rates for 2017. Best of luck.

I worked on top of my full time job doing web dev for Ad agencies, usually php, asp.net or CMS work. Billed at $80/hr, probably netting 40-60k per year on the side. I had always hoped it would lead me to a career as an independent, but that rate is not enough to make a living with a family. I eventually made it to being an independent, but I had to switch to doing enterprise consulting in a niche market at a much higher rate.

So what did you end up niching in? Also, how did you bill for your services?

I haven't freelanced in ~5 years, but while I was based overseas in a _very_ inexpensive living situation, I scraped by on $35/hour doing WP development (urk...) and infrastructure work (now "devops", though we hadn't come up with that moniker yet). I'm currently fulltime employed; if I were freelancing I'd charge >5x that amount.

I am willing to work for 10$ an hour for full stack development (React/redux and go or firebase, SQL, sometimes node), or Cordova app development, or programming embedded devices (C or proprietary languages).

But no clients so far except for some friends who have promised to pay in the future if their startup gets successful or gets funded :)

I have tried the usual freelance sites but no one really bids on me. The reason is that I am from India and don't have much to show in terms of projects/experience - my previous company had a very strict non disclosure policy, and haven't worked on anything open source yet, don't have a blog, etc.

I am not very serious though and more focussed on a project/"startup" of my own but still looking for pocket money of 20-40$ a day to sustain myself without having to do a job. I am trying at fiverr now. Somehow I just haven't cracked the money nut yet.

This may sound weird, but have you tried asking for more money instead of less?

When I started out here in Australia I asked for very little, comparatively, and got an equivalent amount of work. It wasn't until I asked for more than I thought I was worth that people actually started hiring me.

I guess you are right, I should try quoting higher prices and see what happens :)

I earn about $150,000 for 50% of my time. The other 50% I spend on my own projects.

that's a nice ratio, I hope I can get there.

I charge USD 35/hr and offer full stack services for Java/Scala, AngularJS/JS platforms. I have about 8 years of experience now.

I like to keep myself occupied for 6 hours on long term projects and keep 2-3 hours for short term projects. It helps me maintain my diversification across clients.

I am a bit of tech nerd and offer discounts for exciting ideas based projects, specially for startup. I think such projects are win-win for me as tech nerd and client as low cost delivery.

Feel free to reach me out at naveensky(.at.)gmail(.dot.)com. I always keep looking for new exciting projects :)

For a couple of longer term customers I charge $145/hr.

I'm working a full time gig now and haven't taken on any additional work in ages, but depending on contract length I would start at $170 and up.

As I've seen posted here and elsewhere if you're experienced and charge less than yearly salary/2080 * 3 you are giving money back.

(My wife worked as a buyer at one of the national labs and had to purchase contractors, should used to have to tell them what to ask for because more often than not it would be too low for her to quote them out.)

Where do you get clients, if networking is not available for you? I mean, you are not based in the US, so you can't meet these people.

I used to work a bit in Upwork (I am doing complex SPA in React/Redux, though I can do it in other stacks as well), and charged 35–50$ (depend on a project).

Also, my question is, how you raise the bar? Like, I know I can double my rates and offer "solution" rather just code, but how you find such contracts (people tend to not trust you there), and how do you present yourself?

I come from the other side. I hire programers for my side projects and i have seen it all. As an entrepreneur the only thing i care about is that i have a working software. Some programers think they should be paid a lot of money but have very poor skills. If you are good at what you do, people will recognize that and you will be paid a higher wage. Just be good at your job and everything will workout.

Hey there, how can we connect? My email is in my profile

I generally charge 80/hr to do ReactJS / React Native work. I have been doing this for the last 6 months on and off.

What part of the country are you in / are your customers in?

I charge $30AUD an hour for freelance WordPress development. Billing monthly an average of 8 hours ($240) for maintenance and support for an agency which isn't much but nice extra income on the side and the occasional from scratch projects (charges depending on requirement). Main job is a front end developer (angularjs).

$100/hr, albeit writing about/for software, not writing the software itself. Copywriting is a super great gig.


How did you swing that/who do you write for?

I have written an article for Sitepoint and have a couple in-progress pitches with them and someone else, but I am not really motivated about it because the per hour rate, after all the back-and-forth and work, ends up being like 20 bucks or less.

Took a lot of effort to build up the portfolio. I basically tried to avoid content mills and focused my effort on clients I knew I could write a reliably successful piece for (between 2k - 50k hits).

As you allude to though, the back-and-forth does dilute the rate quite a bit. But it's still fun as hell.

How did you get started?

I was running social media for a startup and learned that one of the bosses was paying a freelance copywriter $90/hr. I quit my job the next day.

Do you have any public sites where people can view your writings? I'm also considering venturing into technical writing as I like reading about technologies and their pros/cons. Not sure where to start though.

I earn approx $150K / year for 50% of my working time on client projects. The rest I spend on my own projects

Do others working in this industry differentiate between freelancing (project-based) vs independent contracting?

I freelance part-time in addition to my 9-5. Mostly doing WordPress sites, with the occasional ASP.NET app for projects that need something totally custom. Some other web/mobile work as well. I've been averaging $40k/year the past 3 years in a row.

How many hours do you work on average per week on your freelance projects?

It generally varies between 5 and 25 hours a week, depending on my workload. I've been enjoying a small slump the past month or so where I've only logged about 10 hours total, but more projects are in the hopper and are in the design stage now.

I do web development for $25/hour, HTML/CSS, JavaScript, and some basic things on server, Apache, MySQL, Python. I'm in China, so it's good for me. If you have any project needs help, feel free to contact me, tarvos21 at gmail.com

Don't really freelance anymore, but when I did, $75/hour (mostly in Rails and ColdFusion) was typical. I do some mentoring (codementor.io) at $80-120/hour (they take 20%). (My rates would be higher if it was my fulltime gig)

I am doing Java (mostly), 10 years of experience, in New Zealand (not much work to do here, unfortunately), 80-100 NZD per hour.

I'm currently free for about 20-30 hours per week, looking for more work.

Feel free to contact me: kovrik0 at gmail.com

Keep in mind that on the 1st of each month there's an HN post where it's kosher to advertise your freelance services.

PHP/Node/Phonegap Development in South Africa - R600/hour (about $50) for local customers, $70/hour for US based and 50 euro/hour for European based customers. I think I need to up my rates.

If you have solution for background GPS updates on Cordova, shoot me a mail ;) ( without the popular component which cost a lot for what it is

$125-175/hr for contract iOS development in NYC.

I earned a bit less than €10k since August 3rd with French clients (I'm still ramping up my prices).

Hourly? Yearly? Fulltime? Part-time?

Worldwide or only for a specific market? All kinds of software development or special segments? The span is quite huge ...

all of the above?

I think they're evading the question.

I usually charge $100/hr for native mobile development on the side.

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