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Best city for telecommuters? It’s Las Vegas, analysis says

Las Vegas is the top city for workers who telecommute or freelance, according to an analysis by Realtor.com.

Researchers ranked the top 100 metro areas in the country, based on the number of households, to determine which spots matched up best for freelancers or those working from home.

Researchers looked at factors such as: median metro home prices, cost of high-bandwidth internet connections, and state and local taxes. Using data from the popular rating site Yelp, researchers also factored in the number of coffee shops with free Wi-Fi per capita and the number of bars open at 3 p.m. per capita.

Clare Trapasso, senior news editor at Realtor.com, said the ranking accounted for economic factors such as housing costs as well as entertainment.

Trapasso added that freelancers or telecommuters might want places nearby to walk around or take a break, because, “If you’re working remotely, you’re not around people all day.”

Marek Biernacinski, 35, runs his language services company Words by a Pro, out of his Henderson home.

Biernacinski, who founded the company with his wife, Melissa, in 2010, has one employee who works out of Kansas and 12 freelancers who work remotely.

Because the company does not have a centralized location where employees can interact, Biernacinski said he has tried to create a “water cooler effect” through digital means via phone calls and project management programs.

“That is a primary challenge for any kind of telecommuting work,” Biernacinski said.

Biernacinski added that the primary benefit of having his business in Nevada was the lack of state income tax.

Alejandro Rodriguez-Dawson, 21, a freelance audio engineer, moved to Las Vegas from Hawaii in 2014. Rodriguez-Dawson rents a space at a local studio but said he eventually would like to move the operation into his own home.

With the right equipment and home setup, Rodriguez-Dawson said one can “record out of your closet and still come up with high-quality recordings.”

When deciding to move to the mainland to pursue music, Rodriguez-Dawson said he considered the music hubs of Los Angeles and New York but decided on Las Vegas for economic reasons and because he had family in Kingman, Arizona.

“Cost of living is definitely good, one of the reasons why I chose Vegas,” Rodriguez-Dawson said.

Contact Alexander S. Corey at acorey@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0270. Find @acoreynews on Twitter.

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