Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

on-site designer question

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    Ok, I know there are lot of super smart, savvy individuals on this forum, so I thought I’d ask y’all and maybe gain some insight.

    I am a self-employed graphic designer. I have several clients but I have one that is my main client and is my bread and butter. They prefer that I’m an on-site designer and I come into their office where I have a work station (they’ve supplied computer/design software, whatever I need). I am at the office 3-4 days a week (hours vary), and they are definitely my biggest client. Three years ago when I started we negotiated an hourly rate. This rate is a little less than what I charge to my other freelance clients but because I am using this office’s equipment and space I agreed to the lower rate. My issue is that I am raising my freelance rates across the board and it’s an easy solution for my other clients but I am stumped as to how to handle this one. I realize now we should have agreed to renegotiate the contract every year, but we haven’t. At the most I would like to increase my rate with them 5%, just to cover the cost of inflation. And as each year passes and I’m still here I’ll adjust accordingly. I love the people here and I enjoy coming in, but I do spend a considerable time here and I think I am missing out on making more money as my rate with other clients is more. The set up we have works best for me as I can focus on other projects and being able to invoice the company I am able to enjoy the benefits that come with being self-employed. A few times it has been brought up if I want to join them full-time and I’ve always been very honest since the beginning that that is not my goal. I will always prioritize them and make them my main responsibility but I like the flexibility that I have with different creative projects. My question is, how do I ask/request for this small increase to my rates in a professional/business way? I am beyond grateful for their business and definitely don’t want to change our agreement but because I work on-site, is my request fair? TIA!

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