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Plymouth Hoe

Choosing to earn money by freelancing as oppose to working within a specific location or company can offer great freedom in deciding where to live.  There are thousands of freelancers successfully running their own businesses across the country, but many are likely to have worked for larger firms in and around the country's major cities from a young age building a career and gaining valuable experience & knowledge.  

Professions that are tech based or can work online has led to an increase in the movement of homebuyers and tenants relocating out of the city and seeking the country life, and why wouldn’t you if you thought you could maintain a strong income yet potentially benefit from cheaper housing along with a change in lifestyle without the stresses of city living and commuting.

If you can maintain a decent salary from your business, living in the West Country is comparatively cheaper than the South East, and you can understand why the likes of Dorset, Somerset Devon & Cornwall are consistently at the top of buyers lists when wanting to relocate.

‘’I relocated three years ago from Windsor to Plymouth after a separation. The savings on my household outgoings was very enticing, plus the amazing upbringing for my son. 

In Windsor we spent our time in the city or London with friends. We loved our weekends looking at London's amazing museums and eating at great restaurants but I found myself thinking about where I attended University, and it was Plymouth.  I thought how amazing it would be to grow up with lungs full of fresh air and Devons countryside on our doorstep, so we made the move!  We now spend the warm sunny days on the beach or up on a Tor on Dartmoor (amazing even on a stormy day!) 

In Windsor I had a small two up two down terraced cottage with a courtyard garden, in Plymouth the same money afforded me a 4 bedroom detached house with a purpose built office overlooking a garden! If you are not tied down to an employer, freelancing does allow you to live in some of the most stunning places in the UK. I feel very fortunate to able to live here and still earn London Rates’’ 

Cheryl Buckingham, Freelancing Marketing Director

City Living

In Devon specifically, we have two thriving cities Plymouth & Exeter, where commerce and industry provides the bulk of the county's employment. All the benefits of city life can be found in both including National Museums, Royal Theatres, Universities, great restaurants and evening entertainment.

The best part of living in Devon is the stunning coastline and countryside with two national parks Dartmoor & Exmoor, two UNESCO World Heritage Sites and miles of blue flag beaches.  Not to mention it’s home to arguably some of the most picturesque towns and villages often acclaimed nationally for the prettiest or idyllic.  You never feel far away from the country even if you choose to live within Plymouth or Exeter.

This isn’t to say that freelancers living in Devon can’t reach the South East or further when they need to, whether this is for meetings or networking opportunities, as it is in quite easy reach for those wanting to make the trip via public transport.  Devon is well connected by rail and air, with a mainline rail service able to get you into London Paddington in just over three hours from Plymouth, and two hours from Exeter.  Exeter Airport provides regular scheduled national and international flights, and is easily accessed from the M5.  Flybe operate low cost internal flights on a regular basis to London City, Manchester and Edinburgh amongst many others.

We asked local leading mortgage expert Chris Newton, of Trinity Independent Mortgage Brokers about the freelancer's ability to gain a mortgage ‘’ Self-employed professionals can easily obtain high street lending with many mortgage companies offering favourable rates, the majority require just two years of accounts (some lenders will even consider just one year!)’’

So, if you are a professional freelancer with a strong work ethic and network, it is possible to relocate to the West Country but maintain an income comparable to the city affording you both the lifestyle and income benefits from living in the country, and believe it or not, Devon has 364 more hours of sunshine throughout the year compared to the UK average, so walking on the beach and outdoor activities can be enjoyed with less chance of rain than elsewhere in the country, so I know where I would be heading!


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