Last year changed a lot about society.
Much of this change pushed people to relocate to new cities and states.
One of the biggest drivers was remote work. Lockdowns accelerated the remote trends, freeing people from being “tied down” to their employer’s local area. You could move across the country without seeking new employment to take advantage of a lower cost of living, friendlier tax structure, or simply a new experience.
But of course, there were plenty of other reasons that vary from person to person.
If 2020 made you realize that you need a change of scenery but you aren’t sure where you’d like to move, fret not. We’ve put together a list of some of 2021’s most popular cities to move to.
1. Austin, TX
People have been moving en masse from various other areas to Texas in recent times for a variety of reasons. Some seek warmer weather, moving from the northern states and midwest; others pursue financial benefits, such as a smaller government and lower taxes (Texas has no state income tax).
In any case, Texas is a massive state. New Texans tend to settle into several of the larger cities, but the capital of the Lone Star state stands apart.
For one, employment. Austin has a thriving tech sector, leading to plenty of high-paying jobs. Combined with no income tax and a business-friendly regulatory environment, finding work in Austin comes relatively easily.
On top of that, Austin is known for having some of the happiest residents in the nation, as well as putting in place plenty of environmentally friendly policies to protect their environment.
And of course, you can’t ignore the warm weather and Texas BBQ.
Fun fact: Austin attracted even more attention in 2020 when Joe Rogan of podcast/MMA/Fear Factor fame up and left Los Angeles for a mansion just outside of Texas’ capital.
2. Boulder, CO
Colorado has always been a popular state to move to, thanks to its varied climate and amazing geography. There are plenty of beautiful hills and mountains, as well as a plethora of trails throughout Colorado.
Boulder in particular is one of the hottest cities to move to. It offers plenty of job opportunities, a low cost of living (relatively speaking), and gorgeous views of the landscape if you’re outdoorsy.
But don’t worry — the outdoors isn’t the only thing in Boulder. The city also offers excellent schools, shopping, and nightlife. It’s a family-friendly city with plenty of new and beautiful suburbs.
Oh, and it’s worth noting that Boulder isn’t a far drive away from Denver. Denver offers even more job opportunities — and if you’re a millennial or Gen Z’er, plenty of peers. If you want a taste of the big city without sacrificing the great outdoors, Boulder might be for you.
3. Raleigh, NC
There’s a trend of people moving to warm states during the pandemic. It may be because people want some sunlight to lift their moods, or they’re seeking more opportunities to be outside.
In any case, Raleigh, North Carolina has fast become one of the most popular cities to move to in 2021.
Raleigh brings together the best of the big-city lifestyle and amenities with the small-town feel. Many residents praise the city for being comfortable and affordable, yet with excellent amenities and a growing job market.
Plus, there are plenty of new suburbs around the city, making it a great place to raise a family.
Now, North Carolina is known for being warm, but it’s no Deep South state in terms of weather. You get all four seasons in NC — whether it’s wintery weather near the mountains or the summer sun on North Carolina’s coastal beaches.
4. Boston, MA
Back northwards, we have Boston in Massachusetts. It’s hard to say if Boston has ever not been popular. It’s one of America’s oldest cities, so it has plenty of cultural attractions — not to mention historical charm.
But of course, Boston’s also known for having some of the planet’s most brilliant minds. After all, it’s home to Harvard University, MIT, and Boston College, among other prestigious institutions.
And with elite institutions come plenty of good-paying jobs in high-demand fields.
Not to mention that the universities themselves offer more employment opportunities for Bostonians.
One thing to keep in mind: Boston has quite long average commute times. If you work from home, though, this shouldn’t be an issue.
5. Tampa, FL
Yes, back southwards again. This time, all the way to Florida’s west coast on the Gulf of Mexico to arrive at Tampa.
Florida might be known mostly as a state for retirees (hey, who wouldn’t want to retire to warmth and sun year-round?), but Tampa offers plenty of opportunities for the workforce, too. Tampa has an affordable cost of living given its size, a growing job market, and nearly 80 institutions of higher education in the nearby area.
Oh, and remote employees could enjoy more than just Tampa’s sunshine, job opportunities, and low cost of living. Like Texas, Florida has no state income tax, potentially saving you a few hundred dollars a month.
And hey, if you want to visit Disney World, Orlando is only an hour and a half by car.