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9 Great Cities for Teleworkers

Jon Fesmire | November 30, 2020 @ 6:00 AM

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic changed how we look at going to work. Sadly, a lot of people lost their jobs, but many others began working from home. Then, something unexpected happened. No longer tied to the city where they worked, many new teleworkers began moving from expensive areas to those with a lower cost of living. That’s one of the best things about being a teleworker. You might work for a company in New York City but live in Idaho.

Here, we’re going to look at six cities we think are great for teleworkers based on several factors. These include the cost of living and average house and rental prices. As a teleworker, you’ll also save money on gas and car repairs, as you shouldn’t have to drive as much as if you were commuting.

Of course, coworking spaces are also important. During COVID, your best option is probably to work from home. However, when it’s safe to go into an office again, you may find you work better away from your living space. Two companies kept coming up in our searches for coworking spaces: EasyOffices and Regus. These are large companies that provide workspace all over the country. Check their listings, or look for local coworking companies in your area.

Austin, Texas

With a warm climate and plenty to do, Austin, Texas is a great city to live in, especially if you don’t have to commute. The median household income is $67,800. We’re including that information here, and about other cities, even though you may be teleworking for a company located far away. Companies may take into consideration the cost of living where you live, not where they operate, so keep this in mind when applying and negotiating your salary. If you work for a company in a more affluent area, shoot for a higher wage than you might expect living in a more affordable area.

The median home price in this city of 965,000 residents is $328,000, and the average rent is $1,450. In Austin, 8.2% of the population is already working remotely.

If you want to work for a company headquartered in Austin, even while working from home, a few big names include GreatAuPair, Geek Powered Studios, and FringeSport. Typical teleworking job types in the area include accounting and finance, data entry, and software development.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is a city where, if you have a well-paying teleworking job, you can have quite a comfortable life. The median home price is $225,000 and the median household income is $50,000, but your teleworking job may bring in significantly more. Seriously consider buying a home here, since the average rent is high compared to the median home price, at $1,870. Yes, Chicago gets windy, but there’s still plenty to do. Plus, you’ll be listening to the wind whistle by from your own office, anyway!

A few companies in Chicago offering teleworking jobs include Happy Travels, Xerillion, and Dawson Finance and Insurance Group, and common jobs include copywriting, IT, and more.

Detroit, Michigan

We do need to give a warning about Detroit, and we wish this wasn’t the case. Crime in this city is 3.1 times greater than the U.S. average. This is a city attempting a comeback. It’s slow going, but if you choose a safer neighborhood, and NeighborhoodScout is a good site for that sort of research, this can be a pretty great place to live. Detroit still has a lot of culture, from museums to shows to parks for its 673,000 residents to enjoy.

Plus, it’s incredibly affordable. The median home price for the city at large is $45,000, while the median household income is still quite good at $63,500. As mentioned, as a teleworker, you may make more if you’re working for a company in another city. The average rent is as high as many other places at $1,400.

A few Detroit companies that hire teleworkers include VIQ Solutions, WhatConverts, and Maverick Trading. Jobs include data entry, editing, and IT.

Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City is another great spot with a low cost of living and a growing teleworking population. Currently, about 4.6% of employees work remotely in this city of 492,000.

The median home price is quite low at $135,000, while the median household income for people working in the city is $47,500. You should also consider renting. The average apartment rents for just $985 per month.

A few businesses based in Kansas City that allow teleworking include H&R Block, Cerner Corporation, and Hallmark, with jobs like tax preparation, writing, and data entry.

Raleigh, North Carolina

Here, in the capital of North Carolina, 6.9% of the population already works remotely. This probably shouldn’t be a surprise Red Hat, maker of Red Hat Linux, is located in this city of 470,000, and tech companies are often on the front line of allowing people to telework. The weather here ranges from 50 during the day and 30 at night in the winter to 90 during the day and 70 at night in the summer.

The median home price in Raleigh is $280,000 and the average rent is $1,240, while the median household income for people working for local companies is $66,000.

Other companies friendly to remote work here include PRA Health Services and Percona. You’ll find jobs in data entry, computers and IT, and various nonprofits, among others.

Salt Lake City, Utah

With beautiful places to go hiking, museums, the Utah State Capitol Building, and more, Salt Lake City is a nice place to live with a variety of things to do. The population is 201,000, and the median home price is reasonable at $440,000. The rent is even better at $935 per month. The median household income is around $50,000, though if you get a great teleworking job, you may be making a fair amount more.

In Salt Lake City, 4.6% of workers telecommute compared to 6.1% in the state, so The Crossroads of the West has some catching up to do. Still, some big employers here allow teleworking, including Western Governors University (WGU), NICE inContact, and Simplus, hiring for positions like editing, data entry, and software development.

International Cities

Perhaps you’d like to see a bit of the world. Teleworking makes it possible to work and travel, and there are some great cities in other countries where you may like to spend some time. People who do this are called “digital nomads,” and working in international locations has become increasingly popular. We recommend being aware of the political situation in any of these countries before you decided to live there for a while, of course.

Check these out and you’ll also realize just how high rent is in the United States. Here are three cities to consider living in for a while.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

This cosmopolitan city has beautiful architecture, friendly locals, and for an American, great prices. At the very least, you’ll find Buenos Aires an amazing place to live on a budget. Rent per month for a one-bedroom apartment, in the city center, is about $275. Perhaps you’re starting to see the allure of looking into foreign cities! Want to go out on a date? A three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant comes to about $25. You’ll pay even less for rent if you live outside the city center.

This city has a lot of co-working spaces, allowing you to have a dedicated work site outside your home where you can get to know locals and digital nomads. Plus, Buenos Aires has tons of great cafes to stop in and get some work done and excellent wifi.

When off of work, you’ll find lots to enjoy. Go to shows, go dancing, check out a musical venue, hang out at one of the many parks, and much more.

Canggu, Bali

When you think about Canggu, Bali, if the things that come to mind are great weather, gorgeous flora, swimming, surfing, and living in a villa, you’ve got exactly the right idea of what life here is like.

In addition, it’s a fantastic place to live as a digital nomad. Canggu has many co-working spaces and cafes. The wifi is good, and so are rental prices. Rent a one-bedroom apartment in the city center for about $320. Wait, you wanted to live in a villa? Who could blame you, especially considering you can rent one for around $500 or less.

There’s so much to do here, though, that you may find it tempting to spend a lot of your money. Budget and be smart, and you can live in paradise while saving money. A lot of tourists visit Canggu, giving you opportunities to meet visiting Americans when you feel homesick. Plus, there are a lot of other islands and towns to visit in the area.

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Chiang Mai is a large city 700 km (435 miles) from Bangkok. Here, you’ll find a lot of beautiful places to explore. You can check out the sunrise from Doi Suthep Temple or take a tour of Wat Doi Suthep Temple, among other adventures. You’ll find a blend of modern city life and while still being able to visit ancient temples. Enjoy the accouterments of Eastern living like free yoga classes and meditation centers.

There’s no better place to get Thai food than in Thailand, and Chiang Mai has a lot of wonderful food in restaurants and street stalls. Food, and rent, are quite affordable. You can stay in a one-bedroom apartment in the city center for just $435 a month.

Chiang Mai even has 24-hour cafes where you can get a drink and work late at night if that’s your preference.

If you move to one of these cities or another, as you get your bearings and set up your home, consider renting a self storage unit. This can give you time to get everything well-organized and even to declutter. We have plenty of listings for excellent storage facilities all over the country.

Teleworking may not be for everyone, but if you’re self-motivated and a bit of a homebody, it’s a great lifestyle choice.

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