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EACCESS permission denied

I completely removed nodejs and npm from my system, such that running the commands node -v and npm -v returned no version numbers and then I re-installed node and npm first with nvm and then I completely removed it again and tried with the node source repository. I’m going crazy here, trying to figure out why all of a sudden it is making me use sudo to install local packages?
Do I need to remove any caches or something to fully uninstall and re install node?

This is the error:
Unhandled rejection Error: EACCES: permission denied, open ‘/home/noah/.npm/_cacache/tmp/ed9ce957’

I just discovered the “which” command and it looks like I did not completely uninstall npm.