When some workers started returning to the office this year, others were offered the opportunity to work from home indefinitely. Twitter
NerdWallet and many other tech companies will allow employees to travel entirely or almost entirely remotely, freeing them from cramped commute routes and elevators.
However, what is Travel and practical options If you are working remotely now? Should you become a digital nomad? Moving to a new city or staying? Is it really possible to work in a hammock on the beach, or is it annoying?
Many newcomers working from afar are excited and overwhelmed by the options. Here, we highlight five important points to keep in mind as you take the next step towards working remotely while traveling (or not).
1. Should you stay or should you go?
If your work is remote, are you automatically a digital nomad? Unnecessary. In general, digital nomads don’t have their own homes and move from location to location in search of cheap accommodation and fast Wi-Fi. As a digital nomad myself, I can tell you that most of us spend an unimaginable amount of time at our parents’ home.
One of the first things you should consider after your job is out of the way is where you want to live and how often you want to travel. At one end of the spectrum is purely digital nomadism. On the other hand is to stay exactly where you are. And in the midst of a myriad of lies, including:
- Insanity is slow: Instead of moving constantly, some remote employees work more slowly, spending more time in each location. This can be a great way to get started, as it allows you to explore and familiarize yourself with the rhythm of life in each destination.
- Home basis: Even those who work far away, who call themselves “digital nomads” often have a home to return between trips. This provides some comfort, but also has a lot of cost.
- Snowbirding: Although often thought of as tanned retirees, the term “snowbird” refers to people who migrate to warmer climates in winter. Whether to drive down in one RV Or jump on an incoming flight MexicoThis is an attractive option for remote workers looking for vitamin-D.
The big challenge with each option is balancing quality of life with cost. For example, keeping a facility at home means you can keep your belongings, but it can also carry a great price. And renting rooms furnished like a nomad can be more expensive than you might expect.
Each situation is unique. If you already own your home, you can probably use it as a home and rent it out while you travel. If you’re hiring, you may need to stay or move out altogether. Break up spreadsheets, get creative, and create a budget that’s right for you.
2. What about taxes?
They’re not the most exciting aspect of teleworking, but tax is an important and often overlooked consideration when deciding where and how to live. Local taxes and state taxes differ so dramatically that they can affect the cost of living in a particular area just like the cost of transportation or housing.
For example, the cost of living in Minneapolis and Austin, Texas, is nearly equal, according to the report NerdWallet’s computer. However, this has no effect on state income tax, accounting for 6.8% in Minnesota for an individual making $ 100,000 a year and 0% in Texas. That’s a difference of $ 6,800 a year or $ 566 a month – enough to make a meaningful impact on your budget.
Furthermore, the tax regulations for inter-regional nomads are extremely complex, varying from state to state. Remember to consult with a tax professional if you plan to work from multiple states within a year.
3. Can you live abroad?
Living on the beach in Thailand has been a digital nomad’s dream for decades, but can you make it happen? And do you want?
The biggest advantage of living in another country is the reduced cost of living. After you’ve savored a sandwich in Ho Chi Minh City for $ 1, it’s hard to go back to the price in the US. And for those who can earn a salary in the US, living elsewhere can be a financial dream come true.
However, working remotely while traveling abroad comes with a lot of complexity and important considerations. From tax regulations (varies by country) to visa considerations, it’s not as simple as packing and moving out of the country.
Plus, your job may not allow that. Be sure to check with your HR team before moving overseas, as many companies require their employees to stay in certain countries for administrative reasons. Plus, it can be difficult to do collaborative work when you’re 12 hours ahead of a colleague.
4. Should you move somewhere cheaper?
Surfing is passing time. For workers stuck in expensive cities for their jobs, it can be tantalizing See how much you can buy in other cities.
“If we move to Akron, we can buy a mansion!”
But don’t let the cost of housing rule your entire decision. In general, the locality is cheaper for a reason, and buying a dream home in a random city is not necessarily a recipe for happiness. Consider spending time like a “madman” in a cheap city before moving there.
5. What do you value?
This is the final consideration on our list, but actually it is the most important. Remote work offers options, and which option you choose will depend on what you evaluate. Do you want to be close to your family? Or for friends? Do you want to live cheaply and retire early? Or do you want to make the most of your money and live in a vibrant, dynamic city?
Many people never have to deal with these questions. They simply live close to their workplace and do the best of it. Shifting to distance thinking can – and should – raise some tough questions about what interests you and how you will build your life to maximize these values.
Remember: Few decisions are permanent and you can always test something new and vice versa. Experiment with each variable one at a time (e.g. whether or not to keep a house fixed) and see what works and what doesn’t.
The bottom line
A pandemic has changed many aspects of everyday life, from mundane to epic. And if your job gives you the chance to work from home permanently, you have the chance to change the structure of your life – or not.
Romantic notions about working remotely while traveling aside, there are several important financial considerations to keep in mind when planning your next step. If you want to travel more, make sure you don’t pay double your rent or mortgage back home. Make sure you understand the effects of the tax, whether you stay in the United States or move abroad. Don’t let cost of living decide your entire decision and make sure you maximize your personal values.
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Sam Kemmis writes for the NerdWallet. Email: [email protected] Twitter: @samsambutdif.