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It can be difficult to figure out what rate is right for you; whether you are already active as a freelancer or are just starting out.
So what is the hourly rate for a freelance C# developer on average? As always, the answer is: it depends. But in the US, the average hourly rate for a C# dev ranges from $70 – $100.
It is always important to keep in mind that hourly rates can vary wildly. Your hourly rate is determined by a number of factors, such as where you’re based, skills, and experience.
To clear up any confusion, we’ve written this article to give you a good overview of a good rate for you as a C# dev. We’ll look at how your experience and expertise affects your hourly rate, where you should be looking for work opportunities, as well as some proven approaches to boost your hourly rate.
Hourly Rates According to Your Level as a Developer
When it comes to freelancing, how much you earn is often defined on an hourly basis. So in this article, we’ll focus on that.
In a very broad sense, developers typically come in three broad categories: junior, medior and senior. That also applies if you’re specialized in C# and .NET. So we use these three ‘types’ to simplify the experience of a developer, and talk about how this affects your rate.
So what do each of these three types of C# devs typically earn for freelance work? Let’s take a closer look.
Hourly Rates for Junior C# Devs
Junior C# developers are usually capable of doing technical coding tasks under the direction of a more experienced software engineer. As a C# junior dev, you will still need instruction or guidance on more technical and complex topics.
Of course it is possible to get a job as a junior C# developer — though getting a freelance job will be slightly harder; considering employers often want to hire experts as freelancers.
That’s not to say that it is impossible though. If you are well-versed with the basic syntax of C# and are able to write simple programs within the .NET framework, you can definitely find some freelance work as a junior dev.
Of course, the limit of your experience will also be the main limit on your hourly earnings. So what could you earn per hour working freelance as a junior C# dev? Well, a typical rate for a C# dev with entry-level experience is in the $35 to $65 range.
Hourly Rates for Medior C# Devs
If you’re a medior-level C# programmer, you have at least more than 2 years of experience. Mediors exhibit a strong understanding of C#, .NET and SQL, and can usually work with Docker and Git. In addition, medior C# devs also demonstrate good communication skills and experience in solving tasks of different complexity.
Just like with any medior dev, beyond technical knowledge of C# and .NET, medior C# devs will have stronger analytical skills in diagnosing and troubleshooting technical issues. Generally, you can expect to be asked to share your own ideas with both members of your team and lower-level management.
Medior C# devs working freelance get paid quite a bit more than juniors. In our database, mid-level C# developers earn between $50 and $80 per hour.
Hourly Rates for Senior C# Devs
Senior C# programmers tend to bring a wealth of experience to any potential employer. Typically having at least over 5 years of experience, senior devs demonstrate strong expertise of C# programming and previous experience working with multithreading, a range of .NET libraries, and more.
In many cases, a senior C# dev will be responsible for hands-on development, code reviews, technical designs and coaching their team of software engineers. As such, there may be high expectations for you once you start somewhere as a freelance senior C# software engineer; but this responsibility is also compensated best.
While rates will inevitably vary depending on where a company is based, senior C# developers should nonetheless expect hourly rates to be high, ranging from $80 all the way up to $150.
Difference between C# and .NET
While we kicked off this article with a deep-dive into C# hourly rates, it’s good to mention the differences between C# and .NET.
Specifically, C# is a programming language, developed by Microsoft. However, .NET is also called the .NET framework, which is both a library and a runtime for running applications.
Generally though, they are intertwined. So if you want to learn about C#, you should also get to know .NET and the different .NET libraries, considering it’s the most popular way to actually develop new applications with the C# programming language.
So with that out of the way, let’s consider how hourly rates for C# developers can change according to freelance platform.
C# Rates Per Freelance Platform
Freelance C# developers have quite a few options for finding new clients and projects. One of these are freelance platforms, which can be a good way to start freelancing.
So in this section, we’ve listed and detailed four of the most popular freelance platforms below and the average C# rate on each. First up – Upwork!
Freelance C# Hourly Rates on Upwork
Upwork is one of the most popular platforms for freelancers of all kinds. As such, it can be a nice way to find jobs to work with C#. The jobs available on Upwork are structured either as entire projects or as hourly work.
One of the downsides of Upwork is that it’s so popular, that there is often a ‘race to the bottom’ in hourly rates. In other words, the rates (whether per hour or per project) for developers on Upwork are generally lower than elsewhere.
Hourly rates for C# developers on Upwork ranges from $17 to $35. Note that this info is actually about .NET developers (see Upwork’s explanation), but in our experience there aren’t any large differences in rates between the two.
Freelance C# Hourly Rates on Toptal
Toptal does more vetting than Upwork, and connects freelance C# devs with businesses looking to hire experienced devs. As such, you need to pass a number of (sometimes difficult) tests to get through and be listed as a freelancer.
The upside of this is that TopTal freelancers generally get higher rates and clients that are easier to work with. Rates on toptal for C# devs typically ranging from $60 to $150 per hour, depending heavily on your background and expertise.
Freelance C# Hourly Rates on Fiverr
Coming back to Upwork, let’s consider Fiverr which is quite similar. Fiverr focuses a bit more on ready-made jobs rather than hourly work, but we can still say something about the average rates on Fiverr.
Considering it’s so similar, you also see the same downsides as on Upwork. Or in other words, hourly rates on Fiverr are often significantly lower than elsewhere.
So what could you potentially earn as a C# freelancer on Fiverr? Well, on average using Fiverr as a C# dev could net you anywhere between $5 and $30 an hour.
Freelance C# Hourly Rates on Freelancer.com
Freelancer.com is a last popular freelance platform we wanted to mention.
For C# developers it’s not really a go-to platform, but you could still consider it if you’re looking for a new gig. Generally, smaller companies make use of Freelancer.com – so if you’re looking for a big long-term and well-paying project, you may want to look for TopTal or local freelance platforms instead. (Note that every country has some. For instance, we’ve written before about freelance platforms in the Netherlands)
Depending on the scale of the project and the company involved, you can expect to earn anywhere between $10 and $50 per hour as a C# dev working on freelancer.com.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t earn $100 per hour on freelancer.com. It is definitely possible, but freelancers with these rates are generally the outliers.
Increasing Your Hourly Rate as a C# Developer
As a freelancer developer, you need to think of yourself as a one-person business. This means you will need a brand, (more) expertise, and the right way to find the right client.
So in order to stand out from your competition, we advise freelancers to develop a personal brand and a lasting online presence. Branding can be a very powerful tool to boost your exposure to businesses and means you need to rely less on freelance platforms.
Aside from building a unique and noticeable brand, you will see an increase in your hourly rate if you expand your knowledge. So by e.g. learning SOLID principles, clean architecture for C#, .NET implementation and other aspects of C# development, you are sure to raise your hourly rate quickly.
Lastly, it’s always good to consider where your client ‘hangs out’ (online or offline) and how to communicate with them. If you’ve found your niche (whether it’s Fiverr or LinkedIn), double-down and make sure to easily connect with prospective clients.
Determining Your Value
Now that you know more about what junior, medior, and senior C# devs can get paid, it’s time to consider what that means for you.
If you’re just starting out, check out the 4 steps for a starting freelance software developer. Or if you already have some years under your belt, consider how you can find new clients without using freelance platforms — and how you can improve your negotiation skills.
Lastly, if you really want to get a good grasp of the precise amount C# developers earn, take a look at our database. Here you will find hourly rates of actual freelance software developers, allowing you to filter by their experience, skill level, competencies, and more. Good luck!