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My hourly rate is $120.

For anything, no exceptions.

Feel free to offer less, just keep in mind the old project management triangle, triple constant, iron triangle, golden triangle... Whatever you call it...


  • Any computer/IT work
  • Any commercial or residential construction
  • Anything on a boat
  • any flavor of:

    • analysis
    • research
    • consulting
    • engineering
    • project management

  • fixing an engine/appliance/[fillintheblank]...

Doesn't matter. In reality my time/knowledge/experience is likely worth much more than that, but it's a good average for wide application and I have low overhead. (Unless it's through some freelance site that takes a ~20% cut, but I digress)

Being somewhat of a perfectionist, my own standard of quality is higher than average. As a general rule, I don't compromise on that point.

What matters most is how much of my past time (gained knowledge and experience) is applied to the present/future time and how much of that present/future* time is actually spent focused on whatever the task at hand is (the scope portion of the triangle).

Everything is based on this hourly rate which for simplicity's sake can be considered $2/min. Though if not relating directly to minute by minute tracking, nice even base ten numbers as listed below are easier for most people and allow for nominal break/personal time to be included. For estimating a project quote these numbers should give a good ballpark figure.

    Hourly - $100
    Daily - $500
    Weekly - $2,500
    Monthly - $10,000

If you only want to pay $60/hr (my rate about 15-20 years ago), it'll take 2 hours if that makes you feel better.
You want me to work for $30/hr? Ok, sure. Adjust your expectations accordingly and inform me of the project priorities.

For example, say there's four tasks in your project which I could complete in one hour -  $120. But you want to pay $30 (15 minutes), so pick which one you want done. Maybe two tasks halfway done?

An alternative is I put a lower focus and priority on your project and it's 4 hours. Say you're monopolizing my time onsite for this example; expect me to spend three hours being "nonproductive" (doing a remote update to one of my servers, checking the solar input on my boat, working on someone else's project, otherwise entertaining myself, etc.) not including any billable delays beyond my control.
Then there's the option of subbing it out...

See, the rate for my time is still $120/hr, even if I agree to an apparently lower offer.

To further illustrate; the daily rate of $500 would cover 4-6 hours; weekly, about 24 hours; and monthly, 80-100 hours. Which is more or less the amount of actual work performed by an employee in the average fulltime job. I've even seen reports stating up to ~60% of employee time is spent on non-productive tasks.

This rate schedule is equivalent to a $120k yearly salary. Which is a low number for almost any IT position with a few years experience, and really low for my qualifications. $120k is the ballpark for almost any skilled labor with at least 5-10 years experience now.

Despite having 6 figure skills/experience/knowledge, for many years now my income has hovered around poverty level. Even as I write this in September of 2022 I just managed to go six months with no income and spending less than $1000/mo, flat broke again, go figure... That may be because I haven't stuck to my real hourly rate, gave away a lot of my time for nothing*, worked 60-80 hour weeks that ended up earning minimum wage or less and busted my ass on jobs that only covered expenses. Another possible factor is my hatred of engaging in typical sales behaviors. That's all a deep philosophical (and maybe psychological) rabbit hole to explore some other time...

The bottom line is I refuse to compromise or discount anymore.

Even if it's something outside my specific work experience, in over 30 years there's at least a few years worth of transferable skills that can be applied to whatever it is. Besides, being a wealth of random knowledge is side effect of being a "first generation hacker". Or is that vice versa? Also, I was an expert at internet research before google existed. On that note, are your computer systems secure?...
Penetration Testing Rates

Hosting costs for managed or unmanaged web/vps are pretty much the same as anywhere else. Email for price/service matching, special deals for bulk hosts, web designer partnership, etc.

* - I have been the end subcontractor (many times under a series of subcontractors) doing the work that a client has paid hundreds to thousands of dollars for. Also I have done too much spec work. While I have nothing against investing time to create a passive income source, I have to consider my rate as a minimum in doing so. I still need income to live on until [whatever the great idea is] becomes a producing asset. That may be some fraction of my rate upfront, but there has to be a guarantee that at least my full rate will be paid regardless.