The tools I used to create my spreadsheet were my 2010 MacBook Pro and Microsoft Excel 2010. First, I opened my previous budget created last week for my Financial Analysis project. I adjusted the numbers slightly to fit a more usual month’s spending which allowed me to save more than previously thought.
When looking at my needs to create a freelance design business I thought of four important expenses. The first expense would be a website domain to host my portfolio. Designing the website myself or utilizing other tools for simple website creation would save me a lot of money, so I decided to go that route instead of hiring outside freelance work, as my coding skills are minimal at best. Through GoDaddy.com, I can secure a .com domain for $11.99 per year. Secondly, I would need to host my website, and also decided to use GoDaddy’s hosting services.
Initially, I looked for the cheapest hosting option, but after realizing that the cheapest option only allows for 10 gigabytes of hosting space, I decided to up my hosting to the second best option for $6.99 per month. This hosting will provide me with 150 gigabytes, which is much needed space if I were to be hosting my entire portfolio for potential clients to peruse through.
Next, I focused on the costs of great design hardware and software. As I am already both proficient with Macs and Adobe Creative Suite, I decided to purchase both. Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 is currently listed at $1,299 for a new license, which I would have to purchase no matter the scenario. My three scenarios also look at the costs of the iMacs from the 2nd most expensive to the least expensive. It is important for me, however, to have a large screen for my workstation, but the costs was incredibly high just for the larger screen size.
After setting up my Expenses report, plus my savings per year from my initial Budget report while adding in four side freelance projects with an income of about $400 per project, I opted for Scenario #2. For two years, I will have to save an extra $15.41 per month in order to fully execute my Budget plan. I found this option to be the most reasonable in terms of cost per month and amount of months. Three years seemed to be a bit long to purchase my required tools, and therefore I opted for the two year plan which was much more feasible. Lastly, I signed up for a Mint.com account to input all of my banking information and track my spending habits. The website is a great tool for budgeting and saving. It even provides a specific goal savings tool as well!
I will continue to use Mint.com to track my savings plan. My financial goals are extremely realistic as long as I stay on track, and utilizing Mint.com will allow me to do so. These dates and numbers may vary, however, depending upon how much freelance work I can find without a website to display my portfolio. Better get to work!