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With more companies now offering their employees the option to work remotely from anywhere in the U.S., workers have much more freedom to choose where they want to live, whether that’s in a small town or a bustling city. This means that there may never be a more opportune time than right now to move somewhere new. What’s more, you can even get paid to move to certain areas.
All over the country, local governments and organizations are targeting workers and potential residents with incentives like grants, cash toward a down payment on a home, free co-working space and more in order to lure them to their towns. So, if you’re up for an adventure, read on for eight places that you can potentially get paid to move to. Note: Make sure to check out a program’s website for complete details and application dates.
1. Morgantown, West Virginia
If you have a remote job and love the outdoors, Morgantown, West Virginia, (pictured above) might be the place for you. A program called Ascend WV is offering participants $12,000 to move to the West Virginia University college town. The program will also throw in a free outdoor recreation package and co-working space once you arrive. Not ready to move quite yet? The program will extend into 2022 and expand to include other charming West Virginia towns, like Lewisburg and Shepherdstown.
2. Southwest, Michigan
A beautiful coastal town that’s only 90 miles outside of Chicago, Southwest, Michigan is offering potential full-time residents who have remote employment a $15,000 forgivable grant towards a new home that’s worth $200,000 or more. In addition, the Move to Michigan program will offer participants two perks they can choose from a list of options. These include a year-long co-working office space membership, an annual golf membership, car service to local airports for a year, or an annual park and beach access pass.
Not only does Maine boast gorgeous coastal scenery, but the state also offers a tax credit that is specifically aimed at young professionals with student loans. After living and working in Maine for a year, people who graduated after 2015 from a university anywhere in the U.S. and who are paying off student loan debt can qualify for the state’s Educational Opportunity Tax Credit. This credit can help offset your personal income taxes and may even be refundable if you were a STEM major. Plus, unlike many other programs on this list, this financial incentive is open to remote workers but does not require you to be one.
4. Newton, Iowa
If homeownership is a goal, you may want to consider Newton, Iowa, a small town in the Midwest that’s 30 miles east of Des Moines. The town boasts the Iowa Speedway, a golf course, a historical district and an art center among its amenities. To encourage new residents to move there, Newton Housing Initiative offers potential home buyers between $5,000 to $10,000 towards the purchase of new construction homes (the amount is dependent on the price of the house). You also get a welcome package that’s worth over $2,500.
If you love to hike and ski, Vermont could be a great place to call home. The state legislature offers two grant programs via ThinkVermont to attract out-of-state workers: one geared towards remote workers and one for people who want to get paid to move to Vermont to work at a local business. The remote worker relocation grant allows residents who qualify up to $5,000 per year for two years, while the new worker grant offers $5,000-$7,500 based on their physical relocation address.
6. Tulsa, Oklahoma
If you don’t want to abandon city life altogether but love a small-town vibe, Tulsa, Oklahoma, offers the best of both worlds and even describes itself as the “world’s largest small town.” Through the city’s Tulsa Remote program, people who are employed as full-time or self-employed remote workers can be eligible to receive $10,000 towards the purchase of a home in the Tulsa area. The program also offers a supportive community and access to co-working space among its other benefits.
7. Topeka, Kansas
Brimming with Midwest charm, Topeka, Kansas, is another small city looking to draw workers to its area with a financial incentive. People who move to Topeka for full-time employment and rent a home there are eligible for $10,000 in relocation funds; they can also get up to $15,000 if they purchase a home in the area through the Choose Topeka program. Remote workers may also apply to receive up to $5,000 to rent or $10,000 to buy a home. As a resident, you can take advantage of the city’s historical and cultural offerings, including museums, live music venues, and other attractions.
8. Honolulu, Hawaii
With its beautiful beaches and laid-back lifestyle, the appeal of Honolulu, the capital city of Hawaii, is obvious. To help lure remote workers to its state, Hawaii has created a program called Movers & Shakas that offers a free roundtrip flight, discounted hotel stays, and other perks specifically for remote workers and their families who are interested in temporarily relocating to the Aloha State for 30 consecutive days or more. The program requires 15+ hours of volunteer time with local non-profits, along with mentoring and cultural education duties.
For more relocation ideas, check out this list of the most affordable beach towns in the United States. Want to live abroad? These Greek islands have paid people to move there.