As we learned in the last year, travel doesn't have to mean vacation only. Relocation can be a type of journeying, too, especially for those who can work remotely.
During the pandemic, many destinations have tried to make up for drops in tourism by enticing gainfully employed digital nomads.
In fact, a growing number of cities and towns are paying people to relocate.
When there's a trend, you can count on an online business to pop up to support it.
For paid relocation opportunities, there's MakeMyMove. This new online directory lists offers from communities across the United States—more than three dozen different locations when I visited—for would-be residents.
To help with planning, MakeMyMove includes stats for each destination listed, including median home value ($296,646 in Juneau), population (31,911), high and low average temperatures (65/11), and perks of living in the area (the Northern Lights, a bear-to-human ratio of 1:21)
The biggest payout at the moment goes to those willing to move to Southwest Michigan, a cluster of lakeside towns about a 90-minute drive east of Chicago.
New residents will receive a $15,000 forgivable grant for buying a home in the area (median value $199,398). They'll also get an array of add-ons, such as an annual pass to local beaches, a one-year membership at a co-working space, and even two tickets to the 2022 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship in Benton Harbor.
To get the grant, you must move from another state and must establish residency, among fulfilling other requirements.
Medium-sized and smaller locales include Augusta, Maine; Topeka, Lincoln, Osborne, and Wilson, Kansas; Tulsa, Oklahoma; the Shoals area of Alabama; Ontario, Oregon; Natchez, Mississippi; West Lafayette, Indiana; Curtis and Elwood, Nebraska; La Villa, Texas; and several spots in Northwest Arkansas.
In addition to giving out money, some destinations are reimbursing tuition, others are waiving certain taxes, and still others are providing goods and services. They might throw in a mountain bike or moving expenses.
If you can't find your ideal match on the site, click "Design My Move" to enter the location you'd like and what kind of package would entice you to move.
MakeMyMove staffers then get in touch with local economic development programs in the area and see if they can broker an acceptable deal.