Currently far and away the biggest challenge in starting out is determining rates to charge at for translation jobs.
The industry is unregulated which allows anyone to call themselves a translator without any official qualifications.
As a result, the market is incredibly crowded and competitive!
Therefore, the balancing act lies in having a rate which is fair to both myself, as the service provider, and the client. This proves particularly difficult when starting out and not having the same luxury or security to turn down jobs.
There is particularly true when discussing agencies - is it worth lowering initial rates, knowing there are potential future progressions, in order to gain some guaranteed work and build up a portfolio?
Recently I've been reading a lot of articles on the increasingly low translation rates (such as https://www.redlinels.com/translation-rates-race-bottom/ and http://wordsboutique.com/low-translation-rates/). The challenge lies in gaining work without being part of the problem and lowering rates of the industry as a whole and receiving a fair rate for quality work.
Any tips or thoughts greatly appreciated!