If you’re a remote worker, you know one of the best benefits of remote work is having unlimited flexibility in where you live. But which neighborhoods make for the best remote work environment? How can you tell whether a neighborhood you’re considering is a good fit for your remote working needs?
General Factors to Consider
These are some of the most important general factors you should consider when shopping around for a neighborhood to live and work in.
· Crime rates. Crime rates are a good indication of the safety present in this neighborhood. The higher the crime rate, the more likely you are to be the victim of a crime. Though less important to consider, crime rates also affect property values; areas with low crime rates tend to have higher property values, and as long as those crime rates remain low or sink lower, property values have a good chance of rising in the future.
· School quality. If you have kids, you’ll need to think about school quality for obvious reasons; this is where your kids are going to get their education, and the better education that is, the more likely they’ll be to succeed later in life. You’ll also need to consider the quality of local schools because it can impact current and future property values.
· Current values. Some neighborhoods are absolutely amazing, but their amazing quality leads to higher property valuations. You could end up spending twice as much, or even three times as much on a property in a good neighborhood just because it’s in a good neighborhood – and it may or may not be worth that to you.
· Potential for growth. If you see your home as an investment, You also need to think about the potential for growth in this neighborhood. What changes are on the horizon for this area? Are there companies planning on developing this area with new home constructions or the addition of new businesses? Are there new employers providing more work opportunities for the local population? The more a neighborhood has going for it, the more you can plan on growth potential. By contrast, if the neighborhood seems to be on a downward trajectory, or if it’s just remaining stagnant, you can’t afford to have the same degree of optimism.
· Spacing. If you’re working from home, you should also think about the spacing between properties in this neighborhood. For the most part, people work better when undistracted; if your houses are so close together you can see into your neighbor’s window, or if you can constantly hear noise from people outside, you may find it harder to work.
· Access to amenities. What kind of access to amenities does this neighborhood offer? Is there a local gym where you can exercise between work sprints? Are there plenty of bars and restaurants to allow you to go out and socialize? Where is the nearest hospital?
· Transportation. As a remote worker, transportation doesn’t mean as much to you as it did in the past. But it’s still a good idea to choose a neighborhood that has reliable access to transportation, and preferably, proximity to a highway or a public transit system. This is also going to be good for your future property values.
Other Factors for Remote Workers
These are some additional factors that remote workers must consider when looking for a neighborhood:
· Visuals. When you look out the window of this house, what do you see? It’s no secret that some neighborhoods are prettier than others. If you see lots of fresh greenery, tall trees, well-kept sidewalks, in beautiful architecture, every time you look out the window while working, you’re going to feel a boost of dopamine and stress relief. If the neighborhood looks like it’s in terrible condition, or you’re forced to look at an eyesore, It could take a major psychological toll on you.
· Air quality. Did you know that air quality can significantly impact your productivity? Outdoor air quality is largely dependent on the presence of local institutions and the behavior of residents any given area. If you live in a neighborhood that’s far away from industrial factories, and in an area where cars aren’t constantly driving, your air quality is going to be better.
· Noise. How much noise do you notice in this neighborhood? Some neighborhoods are afflicted by a plague of noise, such as loudly driving cars and motorcycles, and a cacophony of different voices outside. You don’t need these extra distractions while you’re working.
Remote workers don’t all think the same. They don’t all have the same values or philosophies. Accordingly, you may have different priorities for what you’re looking for in a new neighborhood. These factors for consideration are just a starting point, and you should spend just as much time thinking about what’s most important to you, personally.