One of the largest benefits of being a remote worker is that it doesn’t really matter where you get your work done. With COVID-19 launching what some have dubbed “The Great Work-From-Home Experiment”, many employers are realizing that it’s much more feasible to allow their employees to work from home than they thought. As such, more and more positions are going fully remote, causing many workers to re-evaluate their current housing situation.
With large metropolitan areas such as the San Francisco Bay Area being well-known for exorbitantly high rents, many remote workers are leaving the cities in favor of greener -and more affordable- pastures. If you are one of these remote workers looking for a new town to call home, here are some of the many reasons why Fresno should be on the top of your list:
Low Cost of Living
Perhaps one of the biggest draws Fresno has for remote workers is the low cost of living compared to other California cities. According to data from salary.com, the cost of living in Fresno is approximately 30% lower than in San Francisco. This means that the paycheck from your remote position goes much further than in the Bay Area, especially when it comes to housing. For the same or even less than your monthly Bay Area rent, you could be paying down a mortgage and building home equity.
Convenient Central Location
Fresno’s location in the center of California is another big draw for residents. The ironic reality is that one of the best things about living in Fresno is how easy it is to get away! Multiple world-class destinations are just a drive away. In an hour and a half, you could find yourself at Yosemite National Park. To travel to San Francisco or Los Angeles is three to three and a half hours, respectively. Fancy a day trip to the beach? Just two and a half hours away.
Future High-Speed Rail
Construction is underway for the California High-Speed Rail, which, when completed, will connect San Francisco to Los Angeles via the Central Valley. It’s expected that this will reduce the time to travel from Fresno to one of the larger metros to just 40-60 minutes.
Fresno is in close proximity to four amazing national parks. Yosemite National Park undoubtedly tops the list as the most renowned, but you also have your choice of Sequoia National Park, Kings Canyon National Park, and Pinnacles National Park.
Great Education Opportunities
Fresno and its neighboring city, Clovis, are home to three distinct school districts, each with their own merits. Clovis Unified School District is home to many of the best schools in the area, with the majority achieving a perfect 10/10 GreatSchools score. Fresno is also home to multiple colleges: Fresno State University, Fresno City College, Fresno Pacific University, Clovis Community College, and California Health Sciences University.
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A Foodie’s Paradise
Fresno’s diverse population means that you have easy access to a whole world of cuisine. Fresno is, of course, famous for its tacos, and the pho here is unbeatable, but the amazing selections keep going. Fresno is home to top-notch eateries from all cultures: Classic American burger joints, dim sum, Indian, Ethiopian, Mediterranean, Japanese, Chinese, Italian, and so much more.
Fresh, Local Produce
It’s easy to overlook Fresno as just an agricultural city, but that is precisely what makes it an amazing place to get access to fresh, local produce. On just 1% of the country’s farmland, the Central Valley produces 1/4 of the Nation’s food. Over 250 varieties of crops are grown here. Nearly every day of the week you can find a farmer’s market being held somewhere in the city, offering fresh fruits, vegetables, and other locally sourced items such as eggs, honey, homemade soaps, and more.
A Growing Tech Scene
It’s no secret that Fresno’s tech scene is rapidly expanding, with local tech hub and incubator Bitwise Industries frequently receiving coverage in major publications such as Forbes and Fast Company.
Amazing Black-Owned Businesses
Although Fresno is one of the most diverse cities in the country, it is not without many of the same struggles surrounding race and equality affecting the entire nation. That being said, Fresno is home to many incredible Black-owned businesses, such as local favorite Chef Paul’s Cafe. Fresno pastor Phil-Rici Skei has compiled a growing list of black-owned restaurants to check out in Fresno.
Arts and Culture
Fresno is home to a rich and vibrant arts and nightlife scene. From the monthly downtown Art Hop (currently on hold due to COVID-19) where you can discover and meet local artists and enjoy a night on the town, to live music venues, the philharmonic orchestra, open mic nights, and stage performances, Fresno has something for everyone.
Fresno is an incredible city with a lot to offer those who give it a chance. The centralized location allows you to enjoy all that California has to offer, without the sticker shock when it comes to finding housing. It’s where you can enjoy the relaxing, laid-back pace of a small town without sacrificing all of the amenities a big city has to offer.