From the sun and sand to accessibility, the Greater Daytona region is the ideal place for remote workers.
While companies enjoy the numerous assets that come with being in Greater Daytona, remote workers are another group that loves the advantages living here brings. Since these individuals can take their jobs anywhere, quality of life becomes a top factor in a relocation decision. Thankfully, Greater Daytona offers an envious lifestyle, complete with affordable housing, outdoor activities, education opportunities, coworking spaces and more.
Kyle Altes, the owner of the Foundry, one of Daytona’s coworking spaces, grew up in the area, and he notes that he could never have predicted the success of his concept.
“Two years ago, I would have argued with you that Daytona was not necessarily a good place for remote workers, but now, I’d argue that it’s an exceptional place to come and work,” he says. “I’d say that less than one-third of our members lived here two years ago – it’s that big a shift.”
Today, the Foundry and other coworking spaces are seeing an uptick in people relocating to work remotely, thanks to the area’s lifestyle appeal, but the rooms themselves also offer a solution to those who have found it challenging to set work/home boundaries.
“People love working in their jammies, but not if it causes a lot of tension,” Altes says. “It’s just exponentially difficult, whether the distraction is household chores or the kids not understanding that while you’re working, you’re not available to them.”
Remote workers also love that this area offers a relatively low cost of living, and it’s significantly less expensive than major metropolitan areas like New York and Los Angeles. So everything from trips to the grocery store to utilities and transportation is easier on your wallet. And housing prices are no different — the median value for a home in Greater Daytona is $284,000 compared to the national average of $316,368.
“The cost of living is still far lower here, even with the boom in real estate,” Altes says. “Florida has no state income tax. It’s more affordable. We have a lot of people moving here or coming here even temporarily from New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and even from South Florida.”
The other more obvious draw for remote workers is its proximity to the beach and its related activities, like boating, fishing, swimming and surfing, as well as other local amenities, such as hiking, outdoor dining and concerts — all of which can be done year-round thanks to the mild weather.
“We are just a few minutes drive from one of the most pristine beaches in the country,” Altes says. “People are really loving their ability to find a balance here with remote work and the lifestyle.”
Remote Life Trends: A Q&A with Kyle Altes, owner of Foundry
What trends are you seeing when it comes to remote workers relocating to Greater Daytona?
More than half of the members of the Foundry weren’t here a few years ago, and certainly, with COVID moving office employees and learning online, people were looking for space and the freedom to move around, as well as the mild weather. As people continue to have the flexibility to work from anywhere and not be tied to an office, people are looking for other factors in where they choose to live, not just being close to their job, and Daytona has a lot to offer.
Is the cost of living a factor?
Definitely, we have no state income tax, plus the housing is affordable, sales tax is lower compared to places like New York, where we’re seeing a lot of people relocating from. The cost of living is much more affordable. People can work the same job and earn the same salary, only not have the same cost of living. Who doesn’t want more money in their pocket?
What are some of the amenities attracting remote workers?
As someone who grew up in Daytona, obviously being minutes from one of the country’s most pristine beaches is great, and everything that comes with that: fishing, boating, surfing, being able to eat outdoors on a patio while restaurants around the country are on lockdown, and the weather. Just taking a walk on the beach is attractive to people.