Freelance Hourly Rate Calculator

This calculator is meant to help freelancers decide what minimum hourly rate they need to charge,¬†based on their business & personal expenses, number of working hours and financial goals. You don’t need to disclose this rate to clients if you prefer to price based on the project, but you do need to know it to determine if your business is competitive and profitable.

The calculator does not take into account important factors such as market supply and demand, industry standards, education, skill level or experience. Use these calculations as a guide, then modify to suit your circumstances. For industry guidelines, consult the Graphic Artists Guild Handbook of Pricing & Ethical Guidelines.

Be honest with yourself, take your time and use real numbers!

All inputs and calculations are done locally on your computer. No information is sent to the server unless you request an email report at the end of the form.


  • Monthly Business Expenses

    Office Rent What is your office's monthly rent? If you work from home, what portion of your rent/mortgage do you claim for your business?
  • Business Transportation How much do you spend per month on business travel, transit, taxis, gas, etc.?
  • Equipment On average, how much do you spend on computers, furniture and equipment, monthly?
  • Software On average, how much do you spend on software and upgrades, monthly?
  • Utilities How much do you spend monthly on utilities, mobile phone, telephone, internet, etc?
  • Insurance How much do you pay monthly in insurance (business, health, office)?
  • Professional Services On average, how much do you spend monthly on legal, accounting and other professional services?
  • Supplies On average, how much do you spend monthly on supplies, stationery, cleaning, postage, books, magazines, etc?
  • Advertising/Promotions On average, how much do you spend monthly on your website, domain names, premium portfolios, directories, competitions, mailers, mailing lists, etc?
  • Anything Else Monthly bank fees? Association fees? Membership dues? Couriers? Business taxes? Add 'em up.
  • Total Monthly Business Expenses

  • Monthly Personal Expenses

  • Rent/Mortgage What is your monthly rent or mortgage payment (minus business portion)?
  • Personal Transportation How much a month do you spend on transportation? Include car payments, insurance, gas, transit, etc.
  • Personal Utilities How much a month do you pay for utilities (heat, electricity, water, etc.)?
  • Needs How much do you spend per month on things you need like utilities, food, insurance, etc?
  • Wants How much do you spend a month on things you want like entertainment, recreation, hobbies, dining out?
  • Retirement Savings How much do you want to put away each month for retirement?
  • Occasional Expenses On average, how much do you spend a month on occasional expenses like car or home repairs, holidays, etc.
  • Anything Else Debt repayment? Childcare? College savings?
  • Total Monthly Personal Expenses

  • Working Hours

  • On average, how many hours a day do you work? (All hours, not just time spent on client projects)
  • On average, how many days a week do you work? (For example, if you worked 4 full days and 3 half days, enter 5.5)
  • How many vacation days do you need annually? (Exclude weekends and holidays)
  • How many public and religious holidays annually? (US & Canada = 11)
  • Approximately what percentage of your working hours is spent on client projects? (Exclude time spent on advertising/promotion, writing estimates, invoices, emails, etc.)
  • Average Monthly Billable Hours

  • Profit

  • Annual Profit/Savings Profit is any money you make above what you need to live and run your business.

  • Tax

  • Estimate your income tax rate (expect 20% to 25%)

  • Results

  • Hourly Rate How much you need to charge clients
  • Gross Annual Sales How much work you need to sell annually
  • Net Monthly Income How much you make per month after taxes
  • Quarterly Taxes Employers usually withhold some employee income to help pay their income tax. Freelancers must do this themselves, setting aside money to pay quarterly instalments.


  • Note: This is optional. Emailing your results will submit your inputs to the server, but this information will not be stored.


  • If you have any suggestions or concerns, please email suggest@technicalillustrators.org. Thank you!