FreeAgent is an online accounting service for freelancers and small business owners. It aims to provide everything a small business owner needs to manage their business including invoicing, expense tracking, payroll, self assessment online filing, bank account integration and more.
I’ve been using FreeAgent myself for over a year now and I started using it based on a recommendation from a friend. I started working as a freelancer / consultant in 2015 and I was on the look out for tools that handled time tracking and invoicing primarily. When my friend told me about FreeAgent and it turned out that it did that plus way more, I was ready to take the trial.
FreeAgent offer a 30 day free trail and after that it costs £19 per month for sole traders, £24 for partnerships and £29 for limited companies. I thought the price was very reasonable and after seeing how easy everything was to use and how good the system was I had no hesitation in jumping onto the paid plan for sole traders.
When you sign up there are a number of things you’ll be asked to provide such as company details and accounting dates. After that you can optionally connect to a bank account so FreeAgent can show you your balance and also let you set up a feed so you can import transactions from the bank account into FreeAgent. This is all really easy to do with clear instructions provided at every step.
The next thing I set up was invoicing. You can choose between a number of invoice templates and upload your own logo. You can also change the email template that goes out along with invoices and you can choose if and when to send out reminder emails for late payments (I’ve not had to send many of those so far). You can change the template for those emails too.
This all took about half an hour and after that I was ready to go!
Once I was set up with the basics in place I created some projects in FreeAgent that I was due to work on. You can set up projects, clients and tasks and set budgets and hourly rates for each project. When I started working I tracked all time spent on tasks using the time tracking feature and when the tasks were complete and it was time to send an invoice you can choose to put the timeslip on the invoice or you can enter tasks and amounts due manually.
After my first year of working for myself it was finally time to submit my self assessment – something I really wasn’t looking forward to. I was interested to see how FreeAgent handled this as I knew that there was a feature built in that allowed you to file your assessment through the system. I was really surprised just how easy FreeAgent made this process. FreeAgent will show you the self assessment form within the system and it fill some of the information for you as it will already know how much money you have made and what expenses you have claimed.
You’ll be left to fill in the missing bits such as employment history yourself and you’ll need to answer all the questions asked on the form which is mostly self explanatory but there is plenty of help next to each question to explain anything you may not understand.
Once you are ready to give lots of your hard earned cash to the taxman you will need to enter your government gateway id and password inside FreeAgent and submit the return. FreeAgent will confirm hat its been submitted successfully and you’ll be able to view it inside FreeAgent and see your tax breakdown at any time.
Ease of Use
FreeAgent should be really happy with the product they have created because it is very user friendly, intuitive and easy to use. Considering the amount of features available everything seems so simple and you are guided through each task very well. Even if you’re new to setting up invoices, expenses and doing self assessments I’m sure you’ll find it all a walk in the park thanks to FreeAgent.
As you can tell already – I really like FreeAgent and I don’t know what I’d do without it. I spend most of my time inside FreeAgent in the invocing and time tracking pages so I cant really comment on how the system works for more complicated businesses or different types of business structures, but for me, it works perfectly.
Not only is the system great but FreeAgent are a great company to deal with. I’ve been sent a number of free goodies which have actually been really useful such as a book called ‘A Field Guide to Freelancer Finances’. FreeAgent also provide award winning customer support. I never had to use it but it looks comprehensive and there are options for live chat, phones support and email support.
In conclusion, if you’re looking for a system to help manage finances whilst you get on with earning money and building your business then FreeAgent may be perfect for you.
If you’d like to take a free trial then sign up below. If you like FreeAgent and decide to pay for the system after the trail then you will get 10% off by signing up through the link below: