Freelancing has become quite common over the years and is a good way of earning money. You get to be your own boss, choose your own timings, pick your own clients and set your own charges. However, designing a freelance contract for a freelance project can be a very daunting task. A weak contract can result in you losing your contract as well as your reputation. Below is a step-by-step procedure of drafting a freelance contract.
Step 1: Terms and Conditions
Service terms is the first thing to add in you contract. Never start a project without specifying your terms and conditions. Many word processor applications have ready-to-use freelance contract agreement templates. You can choose the one that fits your requirements and modify it to your needs.
Step 2: Mention Your Complete Contact Information
It is necessary to mention your complete contact information in the contract including your full name, title, fax number, telephone number, email address and postal address.
Step 3: The Date and Job Number Of The Contract
Assign a job number to your contract. Not only will this give an impression of professionalism in your work, it will also simplify the task of organizing several of your contracts into a proper order. New freelance contractors should keep in mind not to start numbering their projects with ‘1’. Using a random number like ‘328’ will give the impression that you have been taking projects for quite a while.
Also, it is important to mention the date on which you are drafting the contract. This will help you keep track of your contracts and get more organized.
Step 4: Mention Your Client’s Complete Contact Information
The contract should contain your client’s full name and all contact details. These will be mentioned under the job number and contract date.
Step 5: Job Description
Under this portion, you should very specifically mention the full details of your job. Try to be as particular as you can so that your client knows what to expect from the project. As a freelance contractor, mention specific details like the word count of the brochure you are making etc.
Step 6: Project Outline
In this section, you will give a detailed overview of the project including the price you will be charging and the number of sub-projects you will create. It is vital to mention your method of charging your client i.e. whether you will charge on a per hour basis or on a flat rate.
Step 7: Project Description, Method of Payment and Policy Information
Being the most significant area of the contract, this section holds detailed information regarding the project description. It mentions what the client should expect from the project and the time it would take to complete it. Moreover, it also mentions the method of payment preferred by the freelance contractor.
Policies are standard practices. It is essential to mention your policies in the contract so that the client cannot force you to work on something against your will.
Step 8: Signatures
Add two blank spaces on the contract for signatures of yourself and your client and instructions of where to sign. As face-to-face meetings are rare, these contracts are mostly signed and faxed.
These tips will certainly help you make a perfectly fool-proof and strong contract. Below is a sample of how a finished contract looks like.