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PROOFREADING £15/1000 words - EDITING £20/1000 words - ACADEMIC WRITING £10/100 words - WRITING £15/hour

Prices and Terms - Helen Sewell

This page is currently being updated and is not accurate as of May 2020. If you have been directed here please go to summary of prices and terms page instead.

Prices and Terms

On this page:
Proofreading and Editing
Why charge per hour?
Requesting a sample
Turnaround Time

Proofreading and Editing

I want to be transparent with my prices. This is why when you contact me you will need to agree that you are happy with the prices before we proceed, unless you just want to ask a general question.

Because of the vastly different times it can take depending on how much work your document needs, I charge per hour rather than per word.

I charge a minimum charge of £10 which is payable before I start the work. This charge is non refundable except in exceptional circumstances.* After this I charge a flat rate of £15 per hour for proofreading and editing. This is lower than the recommended minimum price of the society for editors and proofreaders, and so I believe it represents great value for money.

See article Proofreading and Editing - What's the difference?

You need to pay the £15 minimum up front* at the same time you send me your document, and then I will make an estimate of how long the project will take me and give you an estimated price based on the hourly rate. If you want to go ahead, you would then need to pay a deposit of 50% of the estimated price using Paypal. I use Paypal because it offers buyer protection, and I want you to feel safe handing over money. However, this deposit is normally non refundable as once I start the work you have paid for my time. See "Cancellation" below. Once I receive your deposit I will work on your document.


I want to encourage returning customers, and as a freelancer it's not just about the day job, its about forming relationships with the people I work with. Therefore I offer a discount for returning customers based on work they have had done within the previous twelve months. This is as follows.

3% discount on each hour between ten and twenty hours work - £146.50 for ten hours - £14.65 per hour

5% discount on each hour between twenty five hours and fifty hours work - £14.25 per hour

10% discount on each hour between fifty and one hundred hours work - £13.50 per hour

Over 100 hours - £13.25 per hour

Prices correct as of March 2018


Because what I quote you is an estimate, I cannot guarantee it will be totally correct. Therefore the actual work may take up to 30% more or less time than I quoted, due to being done in real time. My accuracy is quite good so 30% is a fairly roomy estimate, but I prefer you not to get nasty surprises.

By paying the deposit you agree to pay for up to 30% more than I estimated. I also agree that if it takes up to 30% less time I'll charge you accordingly. I guarantee that I will NEVER charge you more than 30% over your estimate even if the work actually takes me longer.

Once I've finished I will send you a PDF of the document with a watermark for you to look at and satisfy yourself it's ok. If you need me to make revisions I will do so free of charge until you are happy.** Once you are satisfied with the document I will ask for the full remittance and then release the document to you in .doc format with track changes.

Requesting a Sample

If you want I can work on a small proportion (up to 300 words) of your document first and let you see it so you can agree that you are happy with my style and work before I continue with the project. This is covered by the £15 initial payment.

Turnaround time

Depending on what work I have on at the time, I can sometimes turn smaller things around with as little as 48 hours notice, but there's no guarantee of this, so please ask but don't be disappointed if I cannot. Normally however, I would like at least a week's notice for shorter projects such as essays, articles and leaflets, and for longer ones I may need a month or more depending on the length. I'll of course tell you when you contact me if I cannot do your work in the time you want so you can try somewhere else.


On rare occasions you may change your mind after you've paid the 50% deposit. If you let me know immediately, that is within 15 minutes, I will refund in full. Otherwise, I will have started your work. In this circumstance, I will still charge you for any work I've done, and if it turns out it is less than the deposit I will refund you the difference. I will send you what I've done to date. However you should only cancel where it cannot be avoided as I'd much prefer to complete your work and you will only have a half finished document. If my time has gone over the price of the deposit, you will need to pay for what I've done. If you do not I will not be able to release any work to you.

Ready to order? Go to contact me and select "order work". If you are not sure about anything and wish for further clarification, please contact me and select general query.


* I will only refund your £15 if I am unable to start the work or if you change your mind and inform me immediately, that is within 5 minutes. Because I often start work immediately I cannot otherwise refund the £15 as it covers my initial costs.

** I'll work with you to make your document just how you want it, but the revisions will be subject to fair usage. Please ask me more about this when we discuss your work