EVERY weekday Michael Dendle is working from the same Warrnambool dining room table he grew up doing his school homework at.
Only this time it's a decade a later and the 28-year-old is doing tax accountancy for a Melbourne firm.
When the cornonavirus forced staff at Mr Dendle's Southbank workplace to work from home in March, he and partner Rebecca Davis gave notice to vacate their Melbourne residence.
The two city-side workers are now living and working from Mr Dendle's mum's Warrnambool home.
"There was no need to be in the city anymore because there's nothing the city offers that I can't get here," Mr Dendle said.
He left for Melbourne in August last year but the unexpected homecoming has been an opportunity to see his Warrnambool friends again, spend time with his mum, and enjoy a regional lifestyle with financial benefits too.
"It was a huge financial decision to go from paying $1300 a month in rent to paying $50 a week to mum," he said.
"I am loving having the ability to have a much bigger house to live in ... it has taken me a bit not to regress to my childhood self while here."
The pandemic has raised the possibility for Mr Dendle that more workers like him could work remotely in the future.
"Discussions we are having right now in our firm are 'going forward what does the business model look like?' There will be a lot more people working from home," Mr Dendle said.
"I could go into the city one or two days every fortnight just to check in.
"If Melbourne was opened back up I would want to go back. But if I wanted to settle down with a family, Warrnambool has that option for me, it's great to know that I could do what I'm doing now."
But Mr Dendle said he was unsure if the pandemic would become the tipping point leading to more high-rise office workers permanently moving to regional areas.
"I would love it to be a good thing for regional areas, I think there's that opportunity for it.
"But a lot of people are finding 'at first this is great for us, but hang on we are missing a few little things that coming into the office provides'.
"Some businesses need you to come in and have those interactions with your colleagues.
"If employees could work in regional areas and not be discriminated in the workplaces for doing so it would be fantastic."
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