If you’ve been self-employed for a significant length of time, you know all too well that it can be both freeing and frightening. You have the autonomy to do almost anything you want for a living, but the thought of an unexpected loss of work worries you if self-employment is your only stream of income. Unexpected personal emergencies, current events, and other forces beyond your control could throw a wrench in your income at any time. Luckily, self employed residents of BC have access to different types of financial support.
Navigating local resources can be frustrating, and there’s everything from Work BC financial support to personal loans to federal resources such as Employment Insurance (EI). There’s no outright guide for being self employed in BC, but there are programs and tools that can help you make the most out of working independently no matter what circumstances befall you. In addition to there are also specific resources for BC residents, as well as personal loan options.
The type of support you can get will often depend on your living circumstances, what you need the money for, and how urgent your request is. Some circumstances will help you qualify for emergency services, while others may require you to take a personal loan. Regardless of your circumstances, it is important to know what your options are so you’re prepared for whatever life throws your way.
In addition to Federal Resources and support programs, there are a few resources that are specific to British Columbia that may be able to provide financial assistance.
Typically, if you need emergency assistance, you will need to prove that you are either working and not earning money, or that you are willing to look for work. There are exceptions to this rule, typically encompassing barriers to employment and ongoing health concerns. Self employed people can always apply for financial aid; however, you must be prepared to document your hardships and comply with the conditions attached to the aid, which may include looking for traditional employment.
If you have children under the age of 18, you may be eligible for the B.C. Child Opportunity Benefit or reduced cost childcare. These benefits provide support for parents in the form of a tax-free monthly payment and through subsidizing daycare. Self employed parents living in BC can apply for both resources, and the amount of aid you receive will depend on your income, with more support available for lower income families. This is a great solution for parents who need a little extra support balancing their career with parenthood.
Education is vital, and Student Aid BC has resources to support both full time and part time education. On top of student loans, there are various grants available for all kinds of students, including but not limited to grants specifically for adults, persons with dependents, and persons with learning disabilities. If you want to improve skills or ensure your children have access to high quality education, you should explore the student aid resources available through the government and through universities and colleges.
For self employed workers who don’t fall into the above categories, or those who need extra cash, a personal loan is often your best bet. Personal loans can help you cover a broad range of expenses, even expenses that aren’t related to your business. From paying off bills and high interest debt, to acting as a cash advance for a special purchase, personal loans can help you overcome all kinds of capital barriers.
As a self employed person or an independent contractor, it is often difficult to get a business loan. Despite your earning potential, many banks don’t like to take on the so called “risk” of lending to people without a traditional employer. Even getting an everyday credit card can be difficult for independent contractors who can’t get a letter from HR verifying their employment and income. Luckily, there are independent lenders who specialize in helping the self employed borrow money at affordable rates.
Moves is BC’s best source of personal loans for self employed workers, freelancers, and independent contractors. Not only are the personal loan rates among the lowest in BC, with Moves, you can access affordable loans without being blocked by credit checks or big bank bureaucracy. Freelancers, gig workers, and self employed persons can apply for a loan from Moves and get approved almost instantly, making it the top choice for busy business owners.