How much does coworking cost?

Coffee post.jpeg

How much does it cost to cowork, you may ask?

…roughly four mochas per day.

A few days ago, a coworker stood up with coffee in hand, and said. “Jeff? I’m pretty sure I get my rent back in coffee!” So, I decided to put her theory to the test.

For our mathematical purposes, a full-time desk at The Wheelhouse is $350/month, which includes unlimited internet and local craft coffee, 24/7 access to the space, parking, Swamp Rabbit trail accessibility, discounted rates at Soul Yoga and Crossfit, use of the building’s locker room amenities (showers, towels, shampoo, etc) and, most importantly, an introduction to our diverse pool of coworker talent!

Fueling the beast

But back to my story. This particular coworker drinks 3-4 cups of coffee per day. A cost for a medium (because I refuse to use the word “grande”) Caffé Mocha at Starbucks is, on average, $4.15. If you drink 4 of those per day, you’d spend $16.60. There are 261 week days in 2018, but take out another 10 days for holidays and vacation and you’re looking at 251 days x $16.60 = $4,166.60, which translates into $347.22/month.

While many freelancers don’t choose to work from Starbucks every day, and 4 cups of coffee might be excessive for some of us, the point remains true: coworking may not be nearly as expensive as you might think.

But if you’re more of a loner and don’t mind staying in your house, making your own coffee and eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every day, coworking may not make mathematical sense for you. But for those of us that need to get out sometimes to preserve our sanity and social skills, the value is absolutely there.   

Let’s talk about lunch

Many who work from home use “lunch meetings” as an outlet for socialization, but the costs of eating out adds up too. Even if you take advantage of a Taco Tuesday deal, unless you eat like bird, you’ll still probably spend around $10 (after tip).

So, let’s re-run our numbers with a more conservative coffee intake and 4 lunches per week: let’s say you drink 2 cups of $4.15 coffee and eat a $10 lunch every day. That adds up to $18.30 per day or $382.78/mo.

So, if you’re a 4 cups of Starbucks coffee per day kind of person, then yeah, coworking is going to cost a little over $2 per month when it negates your coffee budget. But if you’re a 2 coffee and a lunch kind of person, then you’ll actually end up saving some money.

Let’s be real though. You probably don’t buy Starbucks coffee every day and even if you were at a cowork space, you’d probably still eat out sometimes, so the math isn’t quite as neat as I made it out to be, but the fact still remains. Coworking is a much more affordable option than you might have initially thought.

And we won’t even touch the scenario where some of you work from one of the many awesome breweries in Greenville a few days a week!

 What about work opportunities?

You know I can’t end a blog about the cost of coworking without commenting on the opportunities to make money when you’re in a cowork space.

Having just recently made the IRS deadline for 1099s, I calculated that more than half of our coworkers paid less in membership than they received for work they did for The Wheelhouse Group, the marketing agency of The Wheelhouse Cowork space. In fact, several of our coworkers have made enough to pay for their membership for many years to come.

So, take a look at your spending and, while you can’t predict lost opportunity, you may find “working from home” could actually be costing you.