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The Pros & Cons of Subcontracting Your Trades Services

Published on 6th April 2023

Subcontracting work has become an increasingly popular option for individuals looking to start their own business. Subbies are hired by larger companies or contractors to perform specific tasks or projects. While subcontracting can offer several benefits, there are also some potential drawbacks to consider. In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons of starting subcontracting work.

Pros of Subcontracting

  1. Flexibility
    One of the biggest advantages of subcontracting work is the flexibility it offers. As a subcontractor, you have the freedom to choose which jobs you take on and when you work. This flexibility can be especially appealing for those looking to balance work with other commitments, such as family, recreation or education.
  2. Autonomy
    Subcontractors also enjoy a high degree of autonomy. You have control over the type of work you take on, how you complete it, and what tools and resources you use. This level of independence can be empowering for those who value creativity and self-direction.
  3. Variety
    Subcontracting work can provide you with a wide variety of projects and clients. This can keep the work interesting and challenging, while also allowing you to expand your skill set and knowledge.
  4. High Earning Potential
    Subcontractors typically earn more per hour than traditional employees. Care is needed when negogiating your rate though as you need to consider your own expenses, such as taxes, insurance, and equipment. Generally, subcontractors can charge higher rates for their specialized skills and experience for this reason.

Cons of Subcontracting

  1. Inconsistent Income
    One of the biggest disadvantages of subcontracting work is the potential for inconsistent income. As a subcontractor, you are not guaranteed a steady stream of work. Jobs may come and go, and you may experience periods of low income.
  2. Lack of Benefits
    Subcontractors are not entitled to the same benefits as traditional employees, such as leave entitlements for example. This can be a significant disadvantage, particularly for those who rely on these benefits to support themselves and their families. Consider this when negotiating your rates.
  3. Self-Employment Taxes
    Subcontractors are responsible for paying their own taxes, which can be more complex and expensive than traditional employment taxes. This can be a burden, particularly for those who are not familiar with tax laws and regulations.
  4. Limited Growth Potential
    This could go both ways, some may find subcontracting accelerates growth potential, while other find subcontracting work may limit their ability to grow, as you are typically limited to the projects and clients available within your current network.

Before starting subcontracting work, it is important to carefully consider these pros and cons, and determine whether this is the right path for you. If you're wanting subbie work, try making a listing on Subbie Buddy. It's our very own platform that connects tradies together for subcontracting. Our network is growing quickly and we also have some exciting new features coming soon to take Subbie Buddy to the next level! 

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