Top 7 U.S. Cities Freelancers Should Move

Did you know 35% of the workforce in the U.S. are remote workers? It is forecasted that by 2020, 25 percent of the workforce in Canada will be freelancers working from home.

If you work in marketing, IT, consulting, finance or graphic design, most freelancers service clients in these industries. Although there is a misconception that freelancers earn a low income, the average hourly rate is between $20 – $30 depending on experience.

As a freelancer, I decided to move from a congested city to a smaller town because the standard of living is low and I close to national parks. A few of the first action steps was updating my resume, searching my online presence and researching locations that offered a comfortable lifestyle. As you continue reading, keep in mind that your priorities and lifestyle choices need to match with the next destination you call home.

Factors to consider when moving

Before you start planning your move, remember a comfortable home is not the only factor to keep in mind. You might be a nature lover, and biking trails in the area are important. The urban scene of entertainment with a place to work with free Wi-Fi might be a high priority on your list. We selected these cities because each different offer benefits that include:

  • Low taxes
  • Co-working spaces
  • Rental prices
  • Standard of living
  • Environment
  • Most common industries

1. Las Vegas, Nevada

Population: 632,912

Median listing price: $241,500
Median one-bedroom rental price: $827

Las Vegas is internationally known as sin city, but it offers great benefits to freelancers. A freelancer has a higher chance of finding a bar in Las Vegas that offers co-working spaces, and it is the second top U.S. city with this service.

Income Tax

In Las Vegas, income tax does not exist, the median price for a house is reasonable, and coffee shops are abundant with free Wi-Fi which is comparable to the city of Seattle.

If you can live in this entertaining city without being distracted, it might be a place you want to consider.

2. Salt Lake City, Utah

Population: 193,744

Median listing price: $347,200
Median one-bedroom rental price: $790.15

Salt Lake City is the last place freelancers think about moving. However, in your down time, you can take advantage of skiing in the Wasatch Mountains. It offers health benefits to living in nature compared to the fast-paced lifestyle in most popular U.S. cities. Also, the internet fiber is fast in Salt Lake City which is an attractive benefit to keep in mind.

3. St. Louis, MO

Population: 315,685

Median listing price: $179,900
Median one-bedroom rental price: $683.79

The standard of living in St. Louis is low which is preferable for most freelancers that are new or seasoned. It is a city that embraces co-working spaces which are becoming a trend.

Do you work in the medical industry? St. Louis has some of the top medical schools that include Washington University. It can help with landing new clients with one-on-one meetings in person.

After work ends, there are interesting museums with the St. Louis Art Museum with free admission being one of them.

4. Albuquerque, New Mexico

Population: 559,277

Metro area population: 1.2 million
Median one-bedroom rental price: $650

The picturesque town of Albuquerque has a rich culture mixed with Native American, Mexican, and Spanish. The cuisine is one of a kind with delicious green chili cheeseburgers, burritos, and sopaipillas. When you experience writer’s block, you can rest assured that the many festivals that include crane, wine and balloon fests in nature will inspire you to get back to your computer and start writing.

If you are open to finding new local clients, the industries that are thriving in Albuquerque are tourism, agriculture, energy, government, and aerospace. The standard of living here is at the national average, and if you need solitude, the desert escapes and outdoor activities are within driving distance.

5. Pittsburgh, PA

Population: 303,625

Median listing price: $166,300

Median one-bedroom rental price: $700.38

A freelancer deserves the white picket fence lifestyle if that is what you desire. In Pittsburgh, the average down payment for a home is 20% which is reasonable if you move with your partner or spouse. It has a high per capita of coffee shops downtown. If you are a freelancer that likes to work in a new environment, you can count on a nearby Starbucks.   

As for entertainment, there are museums and universities to visit. If you work in technology, the city is evolving into this sector which opens the doors for potential opportunities soon.

6. Atlanta, GA

Population: 472,522

Median listing price: $274,300
Median one-bedroom rental price: $867.41

Hot Lanta has been known for decades as a city with a low standard of living, soul food and a southern hospitality culture. The good news is Atlanta has a fast internet service for people that depend their livelihood on the computer. The qualifying income to afford rent in Atlanta is $45,078.

Also, a Freelance Forum attracts the top freelancers offering an opportunity for you to network with other creatives and find potential clients.

7. Bend, Oregon

Population: 91,122

Metro population: 175,000
Median 1BD rental: $642

Bend is well known for its nature with a variety of trees, trails, peaks, and mountains. If you are a lover of nature to relax your mind, you will quickly realize living in a natural environment is a way of life here.

When you need to meet with prospects, some restaurants appeal to young adults. If I had to choose from the list, Bend in Oregon would be my top choice. The ability to live in nature, write, take a brisk walk and enjoy restaurants in the city would make my entire year. A few of the cons of living in this city is it is remote, traffic, and it is a tourist location.

Which city interests you the most? We highly recommend that you research all the cities on the list. If you can move to a place where you can lower your personal/ business expenses and find time to enjoy the entertainment it offers, you might find a winner.

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