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Old June 6th, 2007, 10:06 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Ash Greyson View Post
Best of luck to you Dave, you are either really good or really lucky. Either way, I would not expect those rates to hold up for very long.
Yep, I totally agree. The next thing you know, he's going to tell us that local news affiliates pay $500-$1000 for spot news and even more for packages! Actually, you could name your price if you have some VERY compelling and exclusive footage. I made $1000 total from three networks for some static shots of a plane crash. It wasn't the crash video as much as the story behind it that made it so in demand. They were calling me for a change! That is very rare to get that rate for news though. You could make thousands if you shot/stalked celebrities!

Steve? Why are you so focused on itemizing all of those things for your time when you should know them anyway? When I get called, all they want to know is how much for labor and for any gear rentals and that's it. If you start piling things on the rate like what you described they will just tell you see ya bye! If someone tried to bill me for all of those I had to do this and that kind of stuff, I would tell them too bad. We are not going to pay you to prepare and learn about things you should already know. Those days are over. You should be paid for your time while working, any gear rentals and expenses to get the project done and that's it! As far as breaking time down into hours, Ash simply divided the flat rate hours in a workday into the rate and got the hourly value. I thought he was clear when he said "I once got $700 for about 2 hours work but I dont go around saying that I make $350 an hour. My goal is to work 200 hours a month and average $50 an hour and that is a dang good living..."
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Old June 7th, 2007, 04:35 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Ash Greyson View Post
I just looked it up and in 2007 I have "worked" an average of 188 hours a month. I do not charge hourly on most jobs, I just bid them. I keep track of my "hours" so that I can adjust my bids accordingly in the future. I have averaged $55 per hour so far this year. I dont count messing around with cameras, learning new techniques, etc. as hours. I have also hired someone to do client management for me but they work off a %. Ultimately, this is a sales business. I had 2 very similar jobs I did in the last couple months, one I made $1500, the other $8500.

ash =o)
I kinda go by the principle that if I were a regular salaried employee and it's the sort of activity I'd be doing while at the office on company time, it's a work hour whether i'm billing it or not. Another way to correlate it to a regular job in terms of effective hourly rate is look at the gross earnings for the past year and divide by 2000.

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Originally Posted by James Emory View Post
Steve? Why are you so focused on itemizing all of those things for your time when you should know them anyway? When I get called, all they want to know is how much for labor and for any gear rentals and that's it. ...
James - I'm not at all suggesting one itemizes those things in billing the clients, God forbid! You never even mention it to them. Those are overheads necessary to keep your business running that have to be taken into account when you set your rates, that's all. I'm just trying to point out that many freelancers look at the hours they bill the client for and forget that there are often many hours of unbillable work time that are also necessary for all the support activities required in order to even be able to *do* one hour of billable work. Everything from sweeping the floor on up, if you walk into a typical office buliding and see an activity being done by a paid employee, when you do it yourself for your own business that same activity also counts as working time and your real hourly earnings are your gross billings divided by the hours spent actually performing the services for which you're billing the client PLUS all of those unbillable but necessary hours. By my reckoning, for a typical freelancer, billing 200 hours per month @ $50 per hour is going to require a total time committment of at least 400 hours per month, about 12 hours per day, day in and day out. Hardly leaves room for a life.
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Last edited by Steve House; June 7th, 2007 at 05:08 AM.
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Old June 7th, 2007, 08:36 AM   #33
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I'm just trying to point out that many freelancers look at the hours they bill the client for and forget that there are often many hours of unbillable work time that are also necessary for all the support activities required in order to even be able to *do* one hour of billable work.
Oh, I wouldn't say we forget it. I think we're all more than aware of it but to obsess over things that can't be changed is a further waste of time. Hey, I just thought of something. The time that we think about how we're doing extra nonbillable work while working is billable too isn't it? Hahaha!
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Old June 7th, 2007, 11:38 AM   #34
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Oh, I wouldn't say we forget it. I think we're all more than aware of it but to obsess over things that can't be changed is a further waste of time. Hey, I just thought of something. The time that we think about how we're doing extra nonbillable work while working is billable too isn't it? Hahaha!
You betcha! And the fees my ISP charges for the connection I use for participating here comes right of my tax returns as a business expense.
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