Why do you want to get into a freelance writing career? Is it to make extra money? or did you always have a passion for writing? Either way, this is the first step in your journey with freelance writing.  

It took me 8 years/50-hour work week to earn $1000 a month, as an HR professional. It took me less than 8 months to earn that and much more by working from home and freelance writing! Read on to know how to calculate your freelance writing rates before you start sending out proposals!

To Calculate your Freelance Writing Rates first is SO important!

Yes, this is the first step. You need to determine your freelance writing rate before you start doing anything else. 

  • You can write proposals easily.  
  • You will know how many hours you want to dedicate to writing and make money working from home.
  • You will be very practical and realistic about what you deserve for your time and skills.
  • You will be more productive while working from home.
  • You will have a general idea of how much money you would make.
  • Ultimately, determining your freelance rates first will help you get into mutually beneficial agreements with your clients.

It is a good idea to read up and get to know about the market and the current rates. The freelance writing rates may vary from time to time. Your rates need to be reasonable and reflect your skills, delivery timeline and efforts.

Formula to calculate your freelance writing rates

Here’s a quick method by Bamidele Onibalusi, which I used to calculate my freelance writing rate per hour, per article, per word.

How many hours do you want to write in the day?

This is very crucial to determine ultimately how much you would want to charge either by the hour or per word. Unless you are a stay at home parent like me, aiming for a 40-hour week is not realistic. If you have another job already, then a 10-hour per week or 15-hour per week is doable. Then again, the point of being a freelancer is to have the flexibility between work and life, so be realistic about how many hours you wish to put into this.

How much money do you need to make per month?

I started off needing just $445 (approximately Rs.30,000) per month to support hubs and pay the internet bills. This is the bare minimum for me, as I started my freelance career. Whatever figure you have in mind, multiply that with 2 (for further calculations).

How much to charge per hour?

Now that you have your number of hours per month (15×4= 60 hours for me) and total amount needed per month ($445 for me) go ahead and divide these two to get the total rate per hour.

Therefore, 445/60= $7.4 per hour. However, I would add more money keeping in mind the internet bills, EMI for laptop, other expenses, plus taxes. So I would charge $10 per hour.  This is just an approximate, you will need to be realistic about how much you want to charge per hour.

How much to time do you take to write one article?

Now it’s time to get into some serious math. Just go with it, ok?

First, calculate and come to an approximate time that you would write a 1000-word article. (That’s two pages worth of writing) It takes me 40 minutes.

Therefore, 60,000 divided by 40 = 1500 words per hour

How much should I charge per word?

Your rate per word would be to divide the rate of hour (say, you want to make $20 an hour) by number of words you can write in one hour (1500 words)

$20/1500 = $0.01 per word

For clients, charging by the hour or per word can be complicated and so, they usually charge per article.

Here is an infographic to tie it all together.

Bloggers, you can use this, just remember to share a link back to this article. Thanks!

How to Make Money Online: Freelance Writing - PART 1 (Rates)

I calculate my freelance writing rate per 100 words. Makes it easy to calculate the total rate.

You can start small, just to get into the market. Then change your rate card periodically. Eventually, you can start charging blogs at $7 to $15 for 250 – 300 words or more 🙂

Let me know if there is any other method you suggest to calculate rates for freelance writing. Comment Here


Author: Liz

Child of the King. Wife. Mother. Writer. Lover of all things sweet and honest.

4 Replies to “How to Calculate Your Freelance Writing Rates

  1. I would like to know when the book hits the shelf. I would like to order a copy. The flow of your writing is quite captivating, I started at 3:00 (am at work) now its (4.10) – I have pretty much read everything I could get my eyes on. There is so much clarity and honesty in the way you write.

    Keep up…

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