Working from home is a great way to save money. With no commuting costs or expensive lunches, your wallet will thank you.
According to a survey conducted by FlexJobs, nearly 45% of workers say they save around $5,000 a year by working remotely.
But how much money can you really save by working from home?
For Starters, Commuting Adds Up
There’s that whole ‘getting to work’ thing. The average American household spends around $10,961 on transportation, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. Yipes.
It shouldn’t be too surprising, though, since commuting is the second-largest household expenditure category after housing.
Below are some of the expenses that contribute to commuting costs:
- The days of employers covering workers’ parking expenses are long gone.
- Working from home means you only need a garage or driveway to park your car. Buh-bye expensive parking fees!
- Gas prices have skyrocketed, and there are no signs of slowing. The average gas price in America is roughly $4.50 a gallon.
- Taking into account the average cost of gas, commuters spend almost $1,188 a year on gas alone.
Auto Insurance, aka ‘Just in Case’
- Most insurance companies base your rate on how many miles you drive annually.
- If you drive less than 5,000 miles a year for work, it’s likely you qualify for a lower insurance rate.
Keeping Your Ride In Tip-Top Shape
- According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), car owners spend between $6,354 a year to own and operate a sedan and $10,054 annually for a pickup.
- When you’re WFH or hybrid, you commute less, so your car requires far less maintenance.
Planes, Trains, and Automobiles (and Ubers)
- Though using public transportation is usually less expensive than driving a car, it’ll still cost you. Trains, buses, Ubers, etc., seem trivial, but can add up quickly.
Some Additional Savings for WFHers
Some Grace from Uncle Sam
- Several tax breaks are available to self-employed workers and freelancers who work remotely. Check with an accountant to make sure you’re maximizing. Some of these include:
- Retirement contributions
- Home office deductions
- Healthcare expenses
- Depreciation of equipment
Keeping Your Body Fueled
- Commuting takes up a lot of time you could be spending preparing a home-cooked meal, so you resort to takeout food instead. Blah.
- What seem like small expenses, like buying coffee and eating out for lunch, add up quickly. Eating at home is cheaper, and your body will also thank you.
The WFHers New Clothes
- Even if your office has a casual dress code, you’ll still need to purchase “work” clothes to ensure you look presentable. In most workplaces, wearing pajamas is taking it too far. Although…hmmm.
- A survey on consumer expenditure by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that the average U.S. household spends nearly $1,434 annually on apparel. In addition, if dry cleaning is necessary, you’re in for significant costs.
Caring for the Kids and the Critters
- If you’ve children and/or pets, you know how brutally expensive daycare or additional help costs. When you work from home, you can keep an eye on your little ones without taking out a second mortgage.
- WFH also frees up parents to tinker with work schedules so that one parent or a family member can look after their children while the other is working.
Every Coin Has Two Sides
When it comes to remote work, it’s not all about savings, though. Some specific expenses are involved when working from home, so make sure to budget accordingly.
These are some of the expenses you can expect to shoulder:
- Wi-Fi and Data Plans (TV, Internet, Phone)
- Utility Bills (Water, Electricity, Gas, Trash and Recycling)
- Equipment/Supplies (Computers, Desk, Printer, Monitor, Keyboards, Headsets, etc.)
- Tech Tools and Subscriptions (Time tracking software, AI Tools, Com and Collab Tools, Accounting and Payment Software
Carefully tracking these expenses ensures that you can maximize your savings and make the most of remote work.
Working Remotely Saves Money Overall
There are many reasons why working remotely is becoming a more attractive option for employees and employers, and saving money is absolutely high on that list.
If you’re already working from home, leverage the cost savings. If you’re considering WFH, remember to weigh the potential financial benefits it can bring.
Embrace a lifestyle that lets you pocket some extra moolah while rocking those stylish pajamas.
Sounds sublime. Join the fun and start reaping the financial rewards today!