Jun Li

Jun Li



October 30 2023

Pros and Cons of Working Fully Remote in Des Moines

#Des Moines

#remote work

#United States


scenic view of des-moines


Des Moines, the capital city of Iowa, is known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and thriving business community. Nestled in the heart of the Midwest, this charming city offers a perfect blend of urban amenities and a relaxed, small-town atmosphere. With its booming economy and diverse job market, Des Moines has become an attractive destination for professionals looking to work fully remote.

With the advent of technology, more and more companies are embracing the idea of remote work. For many, the allure of working from anywhere is an exciting prospect, and Des Moines provides an ideal backdrop for such a lifestyle. The city is known for its strong sense of community, affordable cost of living, and abundance of outdoor recreational activities. However, as with any option, there are both pros and cons to consider when deciding whether to work fully remote in Des Moines. In this article, we will explore these factors in detail, allowing you to make an informed decision about whether this city is the right fit for your remote work lifestyle.

Pros of Working Fully Remote in Des Moines


scenic view of des-moines

  • Safety and Security

  • One of the biggest advantages of working fully remote in Des Moines is the city's reputation for safety and security. Des Moines consistently ranks as one of the safest cities in the United States, providing a peace of mind for remote workers. Whether you're walking around downtown or working in a coffee shop, you can feel confident about your personal safety. This sense of security allows you to focus more on your work and enjoy the freedom and flexibility of remote work without worrying about your well-being.

  • High-Speed Internet

  • With fast internet speeds available in Des Moines, working fully remote becomes a breeze. Whether you need to join online meetings, collaborate with team members, or complete your daily tasks, you can count on a reliable and efficient internet connection. Say goodbye to lagging video calls and frustrating loading times. With Des Moines' fast internet, you'll be able to work smoothly and without any interruptions, allowing you to stay productive and focused on your work.

  • Abundance of Leisure Activities

  • Des Moines offers a plethora of leisure activities for remote workers to enjoy during their free time. Whether you're looking to explore nature or immerse yourself in the city's vibrant culture, there's something for everyone.

    If you're an outdoor enthusiast, you'll be delighted by the beautiful parks and well-maintained trails that Des Moines has to offer. The city is home to numerous parks and green spaces, providing ample opportunities for hiking, biking, and leisurely walks. You can escape the hustle and bustle of work and enjoy the serenity of nature just a short distance from your home.

    For those who prefer indoor activities, Des Moines is packed with entertainment options. From art galleries to theaters, you'll always find something interesting happening in the city. The Des Moines Arts Festival is a standout event that showcases the talents of local artists and performers. You can spend your evenings enjoying live music, theater productions, or exploring the city's vibrant nightlife scene.

    Des Moines is also known for its incredible food scene. As a remote worker, you can take advantage of the city's diverse culinary offerings. From trendy food trucks to upscale restaurants, there's a wide range of options to satisfy your taste buds. You can also explore the local farmers' markets and enjoy fresh, locally sourced ingredients right at your doorstep.

    Additionally, Des Moines hosts numerous festivals and events throughout the year. From the Iowa State Fair, known for its delicious food and entertainment, to the Downtown Farmers' Market, where you can experience a bustling atmosphere and interact with local vendors, there's always an event to look forward to. These events provide a great opportunity to meet new people or simply enjoy the festivities with friends and family.

    With its abundance of leisure activities, Des Moines ensures that remote workers have plenty of opportunities to relax, recharge, and make the most of their free time. Whether you're seeking adventure in the great outdoors or immersing yourself in the city's cultural offerings, Des Moines offers a vibrant and exciting environment for remote professionals.

  • Pleasant Spring Weather

  • One of the many perks of working fully remote in Des Moines is enjoying the pleasant spring weather. As the temperatures rise and the flowers bloom, you can step outside during your breaks and bask in the warmth of the sun. Imagine sitting on your patio with your laptop, feeling a gentle breeze on your face, and typing away while surrounded by the beauty of nature. The mild temperatures create a truly rejuvenating working environment, boosting your productivity and enhancing your overall well-being. Say goodbye to stuffy office spaces and hello to the refreshing spring air of Des Moines!

  • Good Air Quality

  • Des Moines offers a refreshing advantage for remote workers with its good air quality. When working from home, it's crucial to create a comfortable and healthy environment, and clean air plays a vital role in that. Des Moines consistently ranks high in air quality due to its low pollution levels and ample green spaces.

    Breathing in fresh air is not only beneficial for your physical health but also contributes to a pleasant and peaceful work atmosphere. Being surrounded by clean air can boost your productivity, enhance focus, and improve overall well-being. It's much easier to concentrate and stay motivated when you're not constantly battling pollution or dealing with stuffy indoor environments.

    Des Moines' commitment to maintaining good air quality adds an extra layer of appeal for remote workers looking for a conducive environment to thrive in. Whether you prefer working with open windows and natural ventilation or rely on air purifiers, you can rest assured that your remote work experience in Des Moines will be accompanied by fresh and invigorating air.

    Taking breaks during the day becomes even more enjoyable when you can step outside into clean air, take a walk in one of the many parks, or simply bask in the city's inviting outdoor spaces. With Des Moines' good air quality, you can create a more holistic work-life balance by easily incorporating nature and fresh air into your daily routine.

    Overall, Des Moines' commitment to maintaining a high level of air quality ensures that remote workers can enjoy a healthy and refreshing work environment. Breathing in clean air can contribute to your overall well-being, enhance productivity, and even inspire new ideas. Remote work in Des Moines becomes even more attractive when you consider the city's dedication to providing a clean and invigorating atmosphere for you to thrive in.

  • Spacious and Uncrowded Environment

  • Des Moines offers a spacious and uncrowded environment that is perfect for remote work. With its low population density and ample open spaces, this city provides a refreshing change from the hustle and bustle of larger metropolitan areas. Working remotely in Des Moines means you can enjoy a peaceful and serene atmosphere, with plenty of room to breathe and concentrate on your tasks.

    The wide-open spaces of Des Moines not only provide physical comfort but also create a more tranquil work environment. You won't have to worry about noisy neighbors or crowded office spaces, allowing you to focus on your work without distractions. Whether you choose to work from a home office, a co-working space, or a coffee shop, you can find plenty of room to spread out and create your ideal workspace.

    Additionally, the spaciousness of Des Moines extends beyond physical surroundings. The city's low population density means fewer people are vying for resources, leading to less competition and a more relaxed pace of life. This can create a sense of calm and tranquility, allowing you to feel more at ease and less stressed during your workday.

    Moreover, the uncrowded environment in Des Moines also means less traffic congestion, making your commute (if you have one) much smoother. Say goodbye to long hours spent in bumper-to-bumper traffic or crowded public transportation. Remote workers in Des Moines can enjoy a stress-free commute, saving valuable time that can be better spent on work or personal activities.

    Overall, the spacious and uncrowded environment of Des Moines offers remote workers a sense of tranquility and peace, promoting focus and productivity. Embrace the open spaces and let the city's calming atmosphere boost your remote work experience.

  • Ease of Conducting Business

  • Des Moines offers a conducive environment for conducting business, making it an ideal city for remote workers. The city boasts a strong and growing economy, with a variety of industries present, including insurance, finance, and technology. - The ease of doing business in Des Moines is evident through its streamlined processes and supportive business community. The city's low bureaucratic barriers and friendly regulations make it straightforward for remote workers to set up and operate their businesses. - Des Moines is recognized for its efficient infrastructure, including reliable and accessible internet connectivity. With fast internet speeds, remote workers can seamlessly connect with clients and colleagues, ensuring productivity and efficiency in their work. - The city's spacious and less crowded environment also contributes to the ease of doing business. Unlike larger metropolitan areas, Des Moines offers a more relaxed pace, allowing remote workers to focus and concentrate without the distractions associated with overcrowded cities. - Additionally, Des Moines provides a conducive atmosphere for networking and collaboration. The city hosts numerous conferences, meetups, and networking events throughout the year, offering remote workers opportunities to enhance their professional networks and forge valuable connections. - The cost of living in Des Moines is considerably lower compared to major tech hubs like San Francisco or New York. This affordability allows remote workers to allocate their resources more efficiently, enabling them to invest in their businesses, professional development, or even personal aspirations. - Des Moines also benefits from a highly educated workforce and strong educational institutions. The city is home to several universities and colleges, providing a pool of talent for remote workers looking to hire or collaborate with local professionals. This access to a skilled workforce can be advantageous for those building and expanding their remote businesses. - Overall, Des Moines offers a supportive ecosystem for remote workers, combining a business-friendly environment, efficient infrastructure, affordability, and a well-educated population. Whether you're a freelancer, entrepreneur, or remote employee, Des Moines provides excellent conditions for achieving your professional goals while enjoying a high quality of life.

  • Quality Education Opportunities

  • Des Moines offers an excellent education system, making it an ideal place for remote workers with families or those who value lifelong learning. The city is home to several highly-rated public and private schools, providing a variety of educational options for all age groups.

    For remote workers with children, Des Moines offers top-notch public schools with dedicated teachers and a wide range of extracurricular activities. The city's public school district is known for its strong academic programs, ensuring that your children receive a quality education while you work from home.

    Additionally, Des Moines is home to several prestigious universities and colleges, including Drake University and Grand View University. These institutions offer remote workers the opportunity to pursue higher education or professional development through online courses or part-time programs.

    The city also boasts various community colleges and vocational schools, providing comprehensive training programs for individuals looking to enhance their skills or switch careers. From healthcare and technology to business and arts, there are ample opportunities to expand your knowledge and stay competitive in today's job market.

    Furthermore, Des Moines is committed to promoting a culture of lifelong learning and innovation. The city hosts numerous educational events, workshops, and conferences that remote workers can attend to network, gain new insights, and stay up-to-date with industry trends.

    Overall, Des Moines' high-quality education system ensures that remote workers, and their families if applicable, have access to excellent educational opportunities. Whether you're seeking educational options for your children or looking to advance your own skills, Des Moines has you covered.

  • Safe Roads

  • Des Moines, known for its spacious and not crowded streets, offers a safe commuting experience for remote workers. Whether you choose to walk, cycle, or drive, you can feel confident knowing that road safety is prioritized in this city.

    With low traffic congestion and a well-maintained road infrastructure, Des Moines provides a stress-free commute between your home and any local amenities or co-working spaces you may visit. This safety factor not only allows for a smoother and more efficient workday but also adds to the overall quality of life for remote professionals.

    In Des Moines, you can focus on your remote work without worrying about hazards on the roads. This not only saves time and reduces the risk of accidents but also contributes to a more peaceful environment conducive to productivity and work-life balance.

  • Strong Freedom of Speech

  • Des Moines boasts a strong freedom of speech, making it an ideal city for remote workers who value open dialogue and the ability to express their opinions freely. Whether you're working from a coffee shop or attending a local meetup, you can feel confident that your voice will be respected and heard.

    This vibrant atmosphere of free expression fosters creativity and innovation, as it encourages individuals to share diverse perspectives and ideas. It creates a work environment where individuals have the freedom to explore new concepts and push boundaries, leading to the development of groundbreaking solutions and approaches.

    Additionally, Des Moines has a thriving arts and culture scene, with numerous galleries, theaters, and literary events. This provides remote workers with ample opportunities to engage in thought-provoking discussions and attend enriching events that further nurture their creativity and intellectual growth.

    Moreover, the city hosts various forums and conferences that give remote workers a platform to participate in panel discussions, workshops, and debates on a wide range of topics. Whether you're interested in business, technology, social issues, or creative arts, Des Moines offers a stimulating environment for remote workers to engage in meaningful conversations and expand their knowledge.

    The strong freedom of speech in Des Moines also extends to the digital realm. With fast and reliable internet, remote workers can effortlessly connect with global communities, engage in online forums, and contribute to the larger conversations happening worldwide. This allows remote workers in Des Moines to stay informed, share their expertise, and collaborate with professionals from diverse backgrounds, thereby expanding their networks and fostering professional growth.

    In summary, the strong freedom of speech in Des Moines provides remote workers with an environment that encourages open dialogue, fosters creativity, and offers numerous opportunities for intellectual and professional growth. Whether you're seeking inspiration or looking to make meaningful connections, this city's atmosphere of free expression will undoubtedly enhance your remote work experience.

  • Democratic Values

  • Des Moines is known for its strong democratic values and active participation in politics. With a democratic system in place, working remotely in Des Moines allows individuals to exercise their freedom of speech and participate in discussions on various social and political issues. This can create a sense of empowerment and engagement, as your opinions and voices can be heard and valued. Whether it's joining local community organizations, attending town hall meetings, or participating in political rallies, being in Des Moines gives you the opportunity to be involved in shaping the democratic process and making a meaningful impact.

  • English-Speaking Community

  • Des Moines boasts a vibrant English-speaking community, making it a perfect destination for remote workers. With nearly everyone speaking English, it's easy to communicate and connect with locals, fellow professionals, and potential business partners. This not only eliminates the language barrier but also helps to foster a strong sense of belonging and community among remote workers. Whether you're attending networking events, joining professional associations, or simply socializing with like-minded individuals, the English-speaking community of Des Moines ensures that you can easily build relationships and expand your professional network while enjoying the benefits of working remotely.

  • Safe Environment for Women

  • Des Moines, Iowa is known for its safety, making it an ideal place for women who are working fully remote. With low crime rates and a strong sense of community, women can feel secure while living and working in the city.

    Des Moines consistently ranks as one of the safest cities in the United States. The locals take pride in their city and are actively involved in maintaining a safe environment for everyone. Whether it's the local law enforcement or the vigilant neighborhoods, there is a strong emphasis on personal safety.

    As a woman working remotely in Des Moines, you can enjoy the freedom to explore the city without feeling unsafe. Whether it's going for a jog in the park or attending community events, you can have peace of mind knowing that you are in a supportive and secure environment.

    Since Des Moines prioritizes safety, women working remotely can focus on their careers and personal growth without the added concerns of their well-being. It's reassuring to know that you have the freedom to work from different locations within the city, whether it's a coffee shop, co-working space, or your own home, without worrying about your safety.

    Furthermore, Des Moines is a city that promotes gender equality and provides resources and opportunities for women. The city has numerous women-led organizations and initiatives aimed at empowering and supporting women in their professional journeys. By working remotely in Des Moines, you can be a part of a community that values and encourages the success of women.

    In conclusion, Des Moines offers a safe and supportive environment for women who are working fully remote. With a low crime rate and a strong sense of community, women can feel comfortable and secure while enjoying the benefits of remote work in this vibrant city.

  • Family-Friendly City

  • Des Moines offers a high-quality education system, including top-rated public and private schools. Families can feel confident knowing their children have access to excellent educational opportunities, ensuring their academic success and bright future.

    - Safe and Secure Community: Des Moines is known for its low crime rates and a safe, secure environment. This sense of safety provides peace of mind for families, allowing parents to raise their children in a secure and nurturing community.

    - Cultural and Artistic Experiences: Despite being a mid-sized city, Des Moines offers a rich cultural scene that caters to all ages. Families can enjoy visiting museums, attending theater performances, exploring art galleries, and participating in various cultural events throughout the year.

    - Family-Oriented Events: Des Moines has a diverse range of family-oriented events that take place annually. From festivals and concerts to food fairs and farmers' markets, there is always something happening in the city to engage and entertain both children and adults.

    - Strong Community Support: Des Moines has a tight-knit community that values the well-being of its residents. Families will find ample support from local organizations, community centers, and parent groups, fostering a sense of belonging and ensuring they never feel alone.

    - High Quality of Life: With its affordable cost of living and high quality of life, Des Moines offers families the opportunity to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle. From spacious housing options to accessible healthcare facilities, the city caters to the needs and well-being of families.

    Des Moines truly prioritizes the needs and interests of families, making it an attractive city for those working remotely with children. With its combination of outdoor activities, educational opportunities, safe community, cultural experiences, and strong support systems, Des Moines provides an ideal environment for remote workers who want to balance their professional and family lives effectively.

  • LGBTQ+ Inclusivity

  • Iowa has enacted laws to protect LGBTQ+ individuals from discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations. This means that you can work and live in Des Moines without fear of facing discriminatory practices.

    3. Safe and Welcoming Environment: Des Moines is known for its friendly and welcoming atmosphere. The city embraces diversity, and you will find many businesses, organizations, and community groups actively supporting LGBTQ+ rights and causes.

    4. LGBTQ+ Resources and Support: Des Moines offers a variety of resources and support for LGBTQ+ individuals. There are LGBTQ+ community centers, support groups, and organizations dedicated to promoting equality and providing assistance to those in need.

    5. Social Scene and Entertainment: Des Moines provides a vibrant social scene with LGBTQ+-friendly bars, clubs, and events. Additionally, the city hosts cultural events, art exhibitions, and live performances that cater to diverse interests.

    6. Acceptance in the Workplace: Many companies in Des Moines prioritize diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Working fully remote, you can enjoy the benefits of an accepting work environment where your contributions as an LGBTQ+ professional are valued and respected.

    7. LGBTQ+ Health and Well-being: Des Moines is home to LGBTQ+ healthcare providers and clinics that specialize in providing inclusive and competent medical care. This ensures that you can access healthcare services that cater to your specific needs.

    8. LGBTQ+ Representation: Des Moines has a growing LGBTQ+ representation in the political sphere, with openly LGBTQ+ individuals holding positions in government and advocating for equal rights. This representation helps to ensure that LGBTQ+ issues are being addressed and progressed.

    In summary, Des Moines offers an accepting and inclusive environment for LGBTQ+ individuals working fully remote, with a supportive community, non-discrimination laws, ample resources, and a range of LGBTQ+-friendly social activities. If you are looking for a city that embraces diversity and values the contributions of LGBTQ+ professionals, Des Moines should be at the top of your list.

  • Low Prevalence of Smoking

  • Not many people smoke tobacco.

    Des Moines has a noticeably low prevalence of smoking, making it an ideal city for those who value a smoke-free environment. Whether you're working from a cozy coffee shop or enjoying a stroll in the city park during your lunch break, you won't have to worry about being surrounded by clouds of smoke. This not only promotes better air quality but also reduces the risk of secondhand smoke-related health issues.

    For remote workers who prioritize a healthy and smoke-free lifestyle, Des Moines offers a refreshing change of pace compared to other cities. You can breathe easily and focus on your work without the distraction or discomfort of smokers nearby. Furthermore, the absence of smoking also creates a welcoming atmosphere for non-smokers, fostering a more inclusive and enjoyable environment for everyone.

    With the low prevalence of smoking in Des Moines, remote workers can fully embrace a healthy and smoke-free lifestyle, enhancing their overall wellbeing and productivity. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the fresh air while you work remotely in this vibrant and tobacco-free city.

    Cons of Working Fully Remote in Des Moines


    scenic view of des-moines

  • High Cost of Living

  • Des Moines may be a wonderful city to work remotely, but it does come with its fair share of drawbacks. One prominent disadvantage is the high cost of living. Living expenses in Des Moines are generally higher compared to many other cities in the Midwest.

    The cost of housing, in particular, tends to be a significant expense. Rent prices for apartments and houses in desirable neighborhoods can be quite steep, making it more challenging to find affordable housing options. Additionally, the purchase price of homes in popular areas can be costly, making it difficult for remote workers to enter the housing market or afford larger properties.

    Another factor contributing to the high cost of living in Des Moines is the relatively high tax rates. While Iowa has a lower overall tax burden compared to some states, the higher cost of living can still impact your overall budget. Property taxes can be on the higher side, and state income tax rates are also significant.

    The cost of groceries, healthcare, transportation, and entertainment can also be higher compared to other cities in the region. These factors can make it more challenging to balance your expenses and save money while working fully remote in Des Moines.

    However, it's essential to remember that the high cost of living is relative. Des Moines still offers advantages like a strong job market and a high quality of life, which may justify the higher expenses for some remote workers. Additionally, with a proactive approach to budgeting and finding affordable options, it is possible to work comfortably in Des Moines without sacrificing your financial stability.

  • Chilly Winters

  • One downside of working fully remote in Des Moines is the cold winter weather. While the spring season is warm and pleasant, winters can be quite chilly. The temperatures often drop below freezing, and snowfall is not uncommon. This can make it difficult to enjoy outdoor activities or even just to stay motivated when the weather outside is less than inviting. However, if you prefer cozy indoor workspaces and don't mind bundling up for some winter fun, the cold weather may not be a major deterrent.

  • Difficulty building Working Connections

  • Difficulty building working connections can be a challenge when working fully remote in Des Moines. While the city offers a range of professional opportunities and a friendly atmosphere, it can still be difficult to establish meaningful connections with colleagues and fellow professionals. Without the opportunity for in-person interactions, remote workers may find it harder to network, collaborate, and build relationships with others in their field.

    In an office setting, spontaneous conversations, water-cooler chitchats, and team-building activities often provide organic opportunities to connect with coworkers. However, when working remotely, these organic connections may be limited to virtual interactions, such as video conferences, chat messages, or emails. This lack of face-to-face interaction can make it harder to establish a personal rapport or create a sense of camaraderie within the team.

    Additionally, Des Moines, like any city, has its social circles and established professional networks. As a remote worker, gaining entry into these circles may require additional effort and proactive networking initiatives. It may take time to build relationships and find like-minded professionals in your industry who can offer support, mentorship, or collaboration opportunities.

    However, with some intentional effort and creativity, it is possible to overcome these challenges. Joining professional organizations or industry-specific groups can provide remote workers with chances to meet others in their field. Attending virtual meetups, conferences, or workshops can also offer opportunities to network and learn from industry experts. Engaging in online discussion forums or social media groups can help remote workers connect with like-minded professionals and share ideas.

    Working remotely may require you to be proactive and take the initiative to reach out to colleagues for virtual coffee chats or brainstorming sessions. By setting clear intentions, being open to new connections, and actively participating in virtual events, remote workers can start to build their professional network and establish valuable working relationships.

    While Des Moines may present some challenges for building working connections as a remote worker, it is important to remember that these difficulties can be overcome with effort, persistence, and a willingness to forge new connections in different ways.


    scenic view of des-moines


    In conclusion, working fully remote in Des Moines has several advantages that make it an appealing option for many professionals. The city embraces a safe and secure environment, making it a great place to live and work. With its fast internet connectivity and abundance of fun activities, Des Moines offers a conducive environment for productivity and work-life balance. The warm spring weather and good air quality further enhance the appeal of the city.

    Des Moines is known for its spaciousness and lack of overcrowding, creating a peaceful atmosphere that allows individuals to focus on their work. Moreover, doing business in Des Moines is remarkably easy, with a supportive and business-friendly environment.

    Education is highly valued in Des Moines, with access to high-quality educational institutions. This ensures that individuals have ample opportunities for professional and personal growth. Additionally, the city boasts safe roads, contributing to a stress-free commute for remote workers.

    One of the key advantages of Des Moines is the emphasis on freedom of speech and democratic values, fostering an environment where individuals can freely express their thoughts and opinions. Furthermore, the majority of the population speaks English, eliminating language barriers for both personal and professional interactions.

    Des Moines is proud to be a safe and family-friendly city, catering to the needs of all residents. It is also known for its inclusive nature, being very friendly towards the LGBTQ+ community. Additionally, the low incidence of tobacco use provides a healthy environment for all individuals.

    Despite these numerous benefits, there are a few drawbacks to consider. The cost of living in Des Moines can be quite high, which may make it challenging for some remote workers to afford the city's lifestyle. Furthermore, the winter season can be cold, which might impact remote workers who prefer a warmer climate. Lastly, forming social connections and making friends can be difficult initially.

    In conclusion, working fully remote in Des Moines offers numerous advantages, including safety, fast internet, a variety of activities, and a welcoming environment. The city's high quality of education, safe roads, and commitment to freedom of speech further enhance its appeal. Although the cost of living and cold winters may pose challenges, the overall benefits make Des Moines an attractive location for remote workers. Whether it's a safe and family-friendly atmosphere, LGBTQ+ acceptance, or the absence of tobacco smoke, Des Moines has a lot to offer. So, if you're considering working remotely, don't overlook the vibrant and prosperous city of Des Moines.

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