Every. Single. Time! I have had that happen three times with other dog owners (dirty boxers on the floor, surveillance cameras everywhere I went, rotten food in the fridge, poop bags on the windowsill, no clean sheets or towels) but have a million notes about how to take care of their dog. It soured me on dog sitting altogether although I have had some phenomenal clients. I much prefer dog boarding because I know what my place looks like at all times. (The “worth” client was outstanding/clean/guilted me into using less plastic, along with two others, off the top of my head. But if not for those three, I stick to dog boarding these days.)

As for freelance clients, what blows my mind is an extremely well-known publication pulled out all of the worst stops. Contacted me daily for about two weeks. Reached out to hire me (instead of the other way around). Did the phone interview (with an oddly crabby editor who complained about all the freelancers and seemed to hate everybody but the old-timers). But I love and respect the publication, so I still wanted to give it a shot in spite of the complainer. Then it got to pricing. My hourly minimum rate is on my public profile page; it is a surprise to no one.

Then I started getting the skirting around to pay me “another way,” ask me for a flat rate after three weeks’ worth of work, no specification on how many hours it would take to complete it, and vague instructions for the job. After all the nickle-and-diming, I just shook my head and said, “No, I’m sticking with my hourly rate” — the same rate the publication clearly saw when reaching out to me — and removed myself from the interviewees.

But I used to just go “I’ll take it! I’ll take it!” if I liked the publication or if they were paying me a “decent” rate. However, clients who can manipulate you on rates will not stop there. They always have more requests for the same amount of work and will give you low ratings if you don’t complete all tasks. I stay in the top-rated freelancers on Upwork by dodging all that bull — t. My score has dropped a couple of times because I kept taking those clients on. Now I just reject immediately. I think I’ve rejected five jobs in the past week or two, all underpaying, all asking for a laundry list of duties while stating “with the potential for future work with the right candidate.”

Written by

Check out her five Medium publications: Doggone World, Homegrown, I Do See Color, Tickled and We Need to Talk. Visit Shamontiel.com to read about her.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store