Remote work has opened up the country for Americans who no longer need to be tethered to a physical office on an expensive coast or metro hub.
Workers looking to move may want to check out the cities and states that have created incentive programs for relocation. This week, West Virginia announced its new program to compensate inbounders with $12,000 cash as part of a $25 million donation made by Intuit's executive chairman (and former CEO) Brad D. Smith and his wife Alys.
“Employees now have gotten a taste for what it’s like to be able to live in a new area where they have less commute time, they have a lower cost of living, [and] they have access to outdoor amenities like West Virginia has to offer,” Smith recently told Yahoo Finance Live. “I think that's absolutely going to become part of the consideration set in this war for talent."
Some state programs are looking to lure residents with certain occupations or technical skills, while others are looking to attract more diverse and younger populations. Others are just looking for more people.
If you’re interested in ditching the pricier coasts, here’s where you can make some money with your move.
Moving outside the lower 48 might be a big ask, which is why the state is offering a $1,600 incentive through The Permanent Fund Dividend. The catch is that you have to stay a year, but once you get there and reap the benefits of no state tax and the outdoors, you might be inclined to stay.
Newton, Iowa has been trying to attract residents and housing inventory since 2014. Through the Newton Housing Initiative, new homeowners will receive up to $10,000 in cash and a welcome package valued at over $2,500 after buying a new home, depending on the home’s value.
The Northwest Arkansas Council invites newcomers to the region in exchange for $10,000 and a new mountain bike or museum membership. The council is specifically looking for remote workers in one of the STEAM disciplines of science, technology, engineering, arts, or math.
Georgia’s coastal jewel hopes to attract remote workers through the Savannah Technology Workforce Incentive by offering a grant of up to $2,000 to cover moving expenses to inbound remote tech workers with at least three years of professional experience. Newcomers are required to sign a minimum one-year lease or purchase property in Savannah’s county of Chatham.
Choose Topeka is offering up to $15,000 for professionals to relocate to Topeka or Shawnee County, Kansas.
The initiative shows a preference for people relocating to the area for on-site work and buying a home, as that scenario earns newcomers up to $15,000. For remote workers planning to buy a home, the payout drops to $10,000 and then to $5,000 for renters.
Through Tulsa Remote, the city is offering $10,000 upfront grants for transplants that can be applied to the purchase of a home, including down payment and closing costs. With $157,000 as the median home price in Tulsa, inbound residents will receive nearly a third of an average down payment.
The Mountain State’s offer comes with $12,000 for a no-strings-attached relocation through Ascend West Virginia. Also included in the deal is a free co-working space, socialization opportunities, and a year’s worth of outdoor gear rentals and an “outdoor focused welcome trip” worth over $2,500.