Certain professions allows this fexibilty. As far as living of the tenants is a viable proposition. However you will need to have some one responsible/trustable person back home to deal with emegencies.
Tenants seams to have the knack of breaking/damaging/destroying things in the property that as an owner occupier will go on working/functioning for years without needing any attention.
Losing the keys/subletting is a common problem to deal with. If the tenants knows that the landlord is away. Cannot trust the managing agents due to creative works and equally creative invoices.