Asking “Where should I live?” used to be a non-starter: you lived where your job was. Over the last two years, remote work has exploded, and many people can start asking this question.
Our chosen location impacts everything, including social, recreational, and business opportunities. After being stranded during COVID, we value the social aspect more and more.
“Life is short. Do not forget about the most important things in our life, living for other people and doing good for them.” —Marcus Aurelius
The importance of “social” to people cannot be overstated. See bars, restaurants, fraternities / sororities, and other types of social groups. We spend in time and money on these, for the chance to meet and connect with others.
Before the internet, big cities held a monopoly on socialization. People aggregated, in expensive cities like LA or NYC.
We (young, new remote workers) want the social opportunity of NYC or LA without the cost. Up-and-coming urban areas can offer this.
Higher demand means higher costs, though. Austin becomes the next San Francisco, then a new migration begins…
How to break this cycle? Internet communities.
The internet has expanded our social opportunities. We now have access to billions of people versus the thousands in our neighborhood.
Meet our tribe online first, buy remote land, then build a community. And it will be dirt-cheap living compared to a big city, affording its residents more time to do what they love.
This movement has not reached a critical mass yet, but it is already starting.
(Read The Network State for more context).
Finally, advances in “metaverse” technologies can one day surpass the “IRL” experience.
So, the progression for remote workers (a growing minority) will follow something like:
Big City → Co-living Community → Metaverse
Right now, Big City is king. Co-living communities will soon offer greater social opportunity for a fraction of the cost. And the Metaverse can do that to co-living communities.
For now, keep your eyes peeled. Or help build that future.