With many people stuck at home during this pandemic, it has become more and more common for employees to find alternative working locations. For some, it has been their vacation home or staying with out-of-state family. Now, a third option is emerging. 

The pandemic is forcing employers to rethink their policies regarding where people must work. And given the lower cost of living in smaller towns, employees can’t help but consider a move. 

Cities are taking notice of this trend. Several places are offering relocation bonuses to remote workers. These cities know that workers will spend money and bring tax dollars to their economies. To attract remote workers, they’re offering incentive programs that range from $5,000 to $15,000.

In Oklahoma, Tulsa is offering people $10,000 to move there. They’ll also throw in free desk space at Tulsa’s top co-working community and other perks. To be considered, you must be a remote worker who can relocate within six months and be at least eighteen years old. 

Alabama has a similar incentive program for remote workers. They offer those in the tech industry up to $10,000 to live in and work from The Shoals. 

In Kansas, the Choose Topeka initiative offers up to $15,000 to relocate to the city and the Shawnee County community. To qualify, you must purchase or rent a home within a year of your move. 

The Choose Topeka website highlights that the average cost of a single-family home in Topeka is $125,000, and the average monthly rent is $762.

If moving to a cheaper city has ever crossed your mind, the next year may be the time to try it. Start by searching online for remote jobs. You can do this on every primary job site (LinkedIn, Indeed and Glassdoor) by using the word “remote” in the field where you specify the city. 

If you’ve been at your current job for a long time and have a good relationship with your boss, you could ask if working remotely is an option with your current role. Or you may want to see what your company decides to do about returning to the office. Some companies, like Twitter, have decided to allow employees to be remote indefinitely. 

If you’ve ever thought of relocating, spend some time researching to determine what cities may be offering. 

— Angela Copeland, a career expert and founder of Copeland Coaching, can be reached at