As one of the only Australian freelance sites that focuses on stress reduction, we figure we better up our game in the time of coronavirus and the associated economic downturn.
That’s why we’ve introduced a Thrifty Tuesday thread in the group – and this here summary blog of the best places to save your cash!
How many Australian freelance sites are giving you the inside skinny on real time cash savings? Check ‘em out now
Freelancer Vanessa Smith wrote this piece in 2016 about finding freelance work in a tough market.
The Freelance Jungle blog also has a lot of content that can help you with that.
List yourself on Australian freelance sites
There are so many forms of funding right now, it can be hard to keep track. We suggest you check out your local area council, state and federal websites.
Accountant Holly Shoebridge wrote this summary of changes and offered this summary on the stimulus package from the government. There are so many moving parts and announcements, there are likely more summaries around too specific to arts, on Australian freelance sites and more.
Look around is the advice and do your due diligence.
Funding in Moreton Bay Brisbane
If you’re based in Moreton Bay Region north of Brisbane this is a page to keep an eye on for up to date info on grants and financial help available (they even have a dedicated section for freelancers).
Apparently, you can receive $2500 if you’re in arts, hospitality, small business as a support package via relatively simple process.
Funding in Melbourne
City of Melbourne have just announced $2M worth of grants to independent artists and small arts organisations!
You can apply for $4000 – but there’s limited numbers so rush as quickly as you can to apply.
“Whether it’s finding new ways to present works online, or whether it’s using the months ahead as time to focus on the development of new works, we want to support artists to continue working and keep Melbourne’s remarkable creative community strong.”
For all the info, head to the City of Melbourne website.
Get on the phone and get asking
Not all savings come from funding or being given assistance. Some of them come from negotiating prices down, asking for fee suspensions and other forms of relief.
Health insurance is due to rise on April 1st. Don’t get caught out. Give them a call and see if you can suspend the rise and/or negotiate your insurer to cover your rate for a month or two.
Ditto for business insurance, home and contents, car insurance, life insurance etc.
Mortgage and rent
If you haven’t spoken to your bank yet to reduce your mortgage interest rate, it’s well worth it. The major banks and many of the smaller ones are all open to negotiation. There are also stories of some of the banks reducing or waiving annual fees, too.
Some banks (such as ME) are allowing you to pause your mortgage for six months to be reviewed and checked at the three month point. Others may offer the same. Make sure you check for penalties, fees or anything else in the mix though!
If you rent, some reductions may also be available. Individual landlords and real estate agents are offering some reductions or rent relief on a case-by-case basis.
The bottom line? Make the approach now rather than before you get into distress to find out what is and isn’t available.
Deals on Australian freelance sites and beyond
***ADOBE FREE FOR 2 MONTHS***
For those with an existing Adobe Creative Cloud account, follow these steps and they’ll credit your account for the next 2 x months – thanks to Adobe for helping us out during these uncertain times.
1. Login to your account
2. Select “cancel” your plan
3. Follow the prompts and say you’re cancelling because it’s too expensive (you will go through 3 x screens and get to ‘offers’ before the cancellation is finalised).
4. You will be given the option to select ‘2 months free’ during the ‘offers’ phase, and then you’ll have the next 2 x months credited to your account.
Enjoy, and don’t let your Adobe subscription be yet another financial stress right now.
EDIT: If for ANY reason you do this, and don’t see the below in the ‘offers’ section – DO NOT proceed any further, instead jump onto a chat session. I don’t want anyone to actually cancel their accounts unnecessarily.
Fantastic Adobe alternatives. A new 90-day free trial of the Mac and Windows versions of the whole Affinity suite
+ A 50% discount for those who would rather buy and keep the apps on Mac, Windows PC and iPad
+ A pledge to engage more than 100 freelance creatives for work, spending the equivalent of our annual commissioning budget in the next three months (more details of this will be announced soon).
Here are a list of free and freemium SEO tools to help you tweak your website.
Working remotely in Australia
Atlassian (legends) are making their remote work tools free. Here’s their announcement for small teams.
Australian freelance sites often talk a lot about debt collection. That probably won’t change during the economic downturn. What has changed though is the Australian freelance favourite app in debt collection, Collectmore, is currently free.
Deals a plenty
Via Reddit, someone has created a website that aggregates deals and discounts available during the Covid 19 situation called COVIDHelp. The resources are wide ranging and cover essentials as well as luxuries.
Stay in and learn
Sharpen your journalistic pencil
To the journalists (and others) wanting to learn or do a refresher to keep those journalism skills fresh, Poynter is now offering some of its News University webinars and self-directed courses for free until May 31, 2020. The CODE to use is also on the page.
A full list of applicable courses can be found under “Resources for Educators” and Students can find theirs under “Journalism Fundamentals.”
Upskill your creative side
Missing out on jobs on Australian freelance sites because of a lack of skills? Or want to build up your creative arsenal?
You can take these university art classes online, learn music theory or learn creative writing skills for non-fiction or fiction via MOOCs. All are free.
Shut in? Entertain yourself cheaply
Have you given Netflix and Stan a bit of a run through and worried at what might take its place?
Maybe give MUBI a tickle. It’s cult films and cinema you don’t get on the mainstream (see what I did there?). Current offer is $1.
You can stream free movies via ACMI each week via their website.
Fit and fabulous
Need some cheering up while exercising? Work out with Chris Hemsworth and his fitness team via his app for free.
If you like audiobooks, Audible has created a free streaming service for the coronavirus period. It tends mostly towards kids and teens books for people who have kids at home, but you might find something you like.
Need to procrastinate? You can always count on the Freelance Jungle to have the perfect list.
By freelancers for freelancers
Australian freelance sites attract all kinds of creative and innovative people. The Freelance Jungle is no different. Here are some of the cool creative freebies from Freelance Jungle members.
Are you in a high-risk infection category or have someone in the house who is? Lauren Bird has created some free posters to try and encourage people to stay away. If you’re immune system is compromised or you’re in quarantine, download the one that applies to you and stick it up on your door.
Photographer Daniel Cheung is giving away ALL his LEGGO photography. Use them for blog posts, use them for social media posts or print them out onto canvas for the kids. They’re all free for you to use as you please (as per the Unsplash usage license). That is, you can add text to an image, crop them, and *gasp* even apply an Instagram filter. Grab the here – https://unsplash.com/@danielkcheung and If you want to credit him via a link to lensdecision.com or tag IG @naughtyminifig
Get your nom on
Here are some tips from Australian freelancers to you to make the most out of your food.
Regrow your own
Even if you’re not blessed with a green thumb there are veggies you can regrow easily from scraps. The most simple is shallots… pop the bottom section with roots into a glass of water for a few days until they start shooting then plant (use a pencil or stick to make a hole, don’t use the shallot as it will damage the roots). Water every few days to week. Other veg that works this way are celery, lettuce and bok choy.
Save bread by baking bread
Get yourself some sourdough starter (can be purchased online) and make homemade bread. Saves money and is super yummy.
According to our admin Hayley, you can also make a starter from scratch with the bacteria that lives on flour normally if you wanted to skip purchasing the inoculated packs
Check to see if there are any Grow Free carts in your area to access free produce, seeds/seedlings, eggs and other items. Social distancing may be impacting these… so be smart and stay safe. And obviously thoroughly wash, peel or cook any foods you take.
Food shopping advice
Again, the benefits of bringing people together via communities and Australian freelance sites means you get lots of great content.
Here’s one such piece of content from Vanessa Smith on stretching your dollar further when food shopping.
This is our first ever edition of our Thrifty Tuesday compilation. We hope it helps you stretch your dollar further!