Budgeting can be challenging for workers whose self-employment income could flood in one month and dry up the next.
In fact, volatile income is the biggest challenge cited by independent workers in a recent survey by Everlance, with 44 percent of respondents saying it's the most difficult part of being an independent contractor.
"Instead of a weekly paycheck, you're relying on how good business was that week," Marlantes said.
Additionally, sometimes even getting paid can be a challenge. While established companies typically will pay contractors in a timely fashion, some independent workers are relying on individuals to pony up when promised.
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"I encourage people to take payment the day of service if possible," Marlantes said. "Otherwise, you are kind of extending the customer some credit. You don't need to do that."
Nevertheless, this embedded uncertainty means making sure you give yourself a cushion.
"In fat months, save the extra money," Marlantes said. "It's good to build your own buffer."
Additionally, keep track of which expenses you have to pay every month and which come with flexibility, Ritter said.