Need help writing a contract for my first client

Hello! I was recently contacted by a potential client who wants me to build them a simple static website for their small business. I’ve never done this level of freelance work before, and I’m not sure if it’s a good idea to get them to sign a contract or just have a verbal agreement.

I’m leaning towards contract, but I’m not sure how to write one. I can’t afford a lawyer to write one up for me. I’ve found several contract template sites, but they all seem to require some sort of subscription, which I also can’t afford. I’m very clueless when it comes to legal stuff (something that I’m sure won’t be lasting long if I continue doing freelance work).

Any advice would be super helpful. Thank you!

1 Like

If you are going to get into freelance work, you are going to need to either buy some kind of boilerplate contract, get an attorney to create one for you, or write it up yourself. I always have written my own contracts when I did more freelance work, because I like to understand exactly what is being agreed upon. When I created my first contract, I went by our local city’s Small Business Development center and they provided an attorney free of charge to help small entrepreneurs get their businesses going (contract review and other things). They also help me set up my company as an S Corp which had a lot of paperwork involved. Once I had my base contract written, I created a template out of it and reused it for all my clients.


First of all, you can get free forms for a contract at Legal Zoom. Also, if you have a prepaid legal service (I forget the name), but they are about $25 a month, they will write and review a contract for you for free. They also have generic contracting forms. I would highly recommend not only the terms of payment be in writing, but any time frame and some list of details of the things they want, as well as any fee you have to adjustments and additions to the original list. I hope that is helpful to you.

1 Like

Here’s a pretty good starting point for a contract.

Written for UK law and with The Queens English but should be good to work from if you are considering writing your own contract:

1 Like

Thanks for the great advice!

Very helpful. Thanks!

You might want to check out

They have a standard contract that they say is “…vetted by the Freelancers Union and automatically complies with the Freelance Isn’t Free Act.”

DISCLAIMER: I’m not a freelancer and I haven’t used their contracts or invoices personally. I’ve just learned a bit about them and have explored their software platform a bit after they acquired a startup I liked. I always have them in mind in case I decide to start freelancing :smile: .

Good luck with the gig!

This is excellent! Thank you!