As we begin a new year, people who are moving to a new city are faced with unique challenges that will affect their decisions. The pandemic has forced millions of people to work from home or relocate to areas that are sparsely populated. Those who have learned to work at home are planning on continuing part of their weekly schedule as telecommuters. Here are some of the ideal cities to consider in 2021 if you’re thinking of moving this year.
1. Bloomington, Illinois
This city has one of the best percentages of jobs that can be done from home at an impressive 39.4%. The median income of households in Bloomington is about $10,000 above the national level. The share of income that goes toward rent is also low in this city, which means that incomes are well above the cost of living here. Nearly 80 percent of households spend below thirty percent of their income on rent. There are forty parks for residents to enjoy the outdoors and exercise, and the city has some large arenas and concert halls that provide exceptional entertainment.
2. Jefferson City, Missouri
This city has a much lower cost of living than the national average, ranking 5th in the nation in this category. Consequently, over 80 percent of households spend less than 30 percent of their income on mortgages or rent. It ranks 11th among metropolitan areas for its share of income going to housing payments.
Jefferson City has become a popular moving destination partly due to its beauty. It was named the most attractive small town in the US by Rand McNally. The views of the river, historic architecture and the surrounding vineyards add to the visual appeal of the town. The unemployment rate is relatively low at 4.7%, and student graduation rates are high. Pleasant year-round weather also adds to the city’s appeal.
3. Champaign, Illinois
Before the pandemic, Champaign, Illinois had an impressive unemployment rate of 3.2 percent. This college town also has an exceptional number of students enrolled in elementary and high school classes. The city has a high rate of employment for students who graduate from the University of Illinois and other local schools. There is also a thriving culture for entrepreneurs and terrific places for dining and venues to appreciate the arts.
4. Fargo, North Dakota
Fargo is famous because of a movie and a television series of the same name. The town had a very low unemployment rate of 2.1% before the pandemic, and it has risen to only 5.4%. Housing in this city is surprisingly affordable, and it’s not difficult for people to find the kind of home that they want in the area. Fargo boasts many beautiful historic homes and tree-lined streets. The city has many employers who are always looking for individuals to take high-paying jobs. Additionally, Fargo also boasts some of the shortest average commute times for metro areas in the nation.
5. Ames, Iowa
Ames had a rate of unemployment that was ranked fifth-lowest in the country in July of last year, and it only rose about 2 percent during the pandemic. This city also has a well-educated population with 44.6% of people over 25 years old holding bachelor’s degrees. This college town is charming, and it’s only 30 miles from the major city, Des Moines.
In 2015, Ames was named the healthiest city in the country because of the commitment of residents to nutrition and fitness. There are also relatively few people who smoke, and a higher percentage of residents of the town have health insurance than in other metro areas.