Tips & Advice5 US States that Pay Homebuyers to Move There

5 US States that Pay Homebuyers to Move There


With the pandemic came a new era of remote work. As a result, people can now work from anywhere in the world, making the prospect of living in your dream city more attainable. You’re likely excited to be on the move, but before you pick up your bags, are you aware that some states have created incentive programs for relocation? That’s right; some states pay you to move there.

Does this sound too good to be true? Many states benefit from higher revenue from a larger tax base. Therefore, they create programs to encourage more people to move to their state, developing a larger population of residents who pay taxes. Many states offer financial incentives like straight cash, tax break, reimbursement, and even student loan forgiveness to attract more people.

In some states, you don’t necessarily have to be a remote worker to be eligible for the incentives. All you have to do is to accept a local job or buy a house. If you decide to move across the country for financial incentives, a change of scenery, or retirement, there are few states on this list that will pay you to become a resident.

1. Maine’s Smart Buy Program

Maine offers an attractive financial incentive for young workers called Maine Smart Buy. With this program, you can move to and work in Maine to receive a tax break and reduce your student loan debt. First-time home-buyers with student loan debt can receive up to $40,000 in student loan forgiveness. This program is available statewide, and students are eligible to apply.

Compared to other states, housing in Maine is relatively affordable. In the most popular city of Portland, a one-bedroom home has an average purchase price of $502,000. With student loan forgiveness, you can easily find and buy affordable homes that suit your needs.

To qualify for this program, you have to meet the qualifications for Maine’s first-time homebuyer program, meaning you must:

  • Have a credit score at or above 640,
  • Purchase a home in Maine with a purchase price between $86,600 and $131,100,
  • Be a first-time homebuyer,
  • Not a current resident of Maine,
  • Live in the home for at least five years and occupy it as your primary residence.

You must then also have student debt totaling between $5,000-$40,00 to qualify for this program.

2. Baltimore, Maryland’s Homebuying Programs

Baltimore is a popular city for homebuyers. Known for the world-renowned John Hopkins Hospital, the birthplace of the National Anthem, and a sports hub, many potential homebuyers may consider moving to this city. To sweeten the deal, Baltimore offers several homebuying programs.

The median purchase price of a one-bedroom home in Baltimore is $180,000, but you can even find less expensive homes and potentially be eligible for discounts and incentives. New Baltimore residents can qualify for two programs, the Buying Into Baltimore Program and the Live Near Your Work Program.

Buying Into Baltimore Program

The Buying Into Baltimore Program offers first-time homebuyers $5,000 to purchase a home anywhere in the city.

To qualify for the Buying Into Baltimore Program, you must:

  • Earn a homeownership counseling certificate before making an offer on your home,
  • Live in the home as your primary residence,
  • Contribute at least $1,000 of your own money to your home purchase
  • Receive a mortgage that does not exceed the FHA mortgage limit of $583,050 for a single-family home,
  • Apply and get approved for the program before closing on your home.

Live Near Your Work Program

If you work for an employer who partners with this program, you can receive between $2,000 to $5,000 to put toward your down payment or closing costs. Homebuyers must refer to the website’s list of qualified employers to determine if they are eligible to apply.

3. Vermont’s New Worker Grants

If you work remotely or are open to some new scenery, then Vermont may be at the top of your list of states to move to. The state entices new residents to move there by offering two relocation grants: the New Worker Relocation Grant and the New Remote Worker Grant.

In the city of Burlington, Vermont, the median purchase price for a two-bedroom home is $475,000. With affordable housing and beautiful outdoor space, Vermont provides an affordable option for homebuyers looking to relocate.

New Worker Relocation Grant

This relocation incentive program began in 2018 and has since provided 435 new workers with $1,780,000 to help acquire property in Vermont. To qualify for this program, you must work outside of Vermont, accept a job in the state, and purchase property there.

The state recently announced that they are in the process of releasing a new relocation grant program that further helps new residents to the state.

The funding for this program does not cover moving expenses. Interested parties can subscribe to the program’s newsletter to learn about financing opportunities.

New Remote Worker Grant

This program reimburses moving expenses including closing costs or the cost of one month’s rent, a moving company, renting equipment, shipping materials, and the cost of moving supplies. To qualify for the program, you must:

  • Relocate to Vermont and become a full-time resident,
  • Work full-time remotely for an out-of-state employer,
  • Make a wage that matches or exceeds Vermont’s liveable wage.

4. Tulsa, Oklahoma’s Tulsa Remote Program

Through the Tulsa Remote program, remote workers to relocate to the city can receive $10,000. The program launched in 2018 and now attracts a steady stream of remote workers, all who agree to work from home in Tulsa for one year to cash in on their various benefits.

In addition to $10,000 in cash, the program provides recipients with a one-year membership at a local co-working space and exclusive access to additional perks and events. The program also helps new residents access a community and resources to make relocation easier.

Aside from the attractive incentive, Tulsa has a low cost of living and a thriving remote community with plenty of employment options. Homebuyers can purchase a two-bedroom home in Tulsa at a median price point of $144,500, significantly lower than homes in places like New York City.

To qualify for the Tulsa Remote program, you have to be:

  • 18 years of age or older,
  • Eligible to work in the US,
  • Full-time remote or self-employed worker based outside the state of Oklahoma,
  • Able to move to Tulsa within 12 months of applying.

Once you receive approval, you earn the first $2,500 upfront to help with moving costs. The rest of the money comes throughout your first year as a monthly stipend, ending with a larger sum at the end of the first year of residency.

5. Newton, Iowa’s The Get To Know Newton Incentive

This city is attracting new residents with its affordable housing and housing incentives. Newton has one of the oldest housing incentives, Get To know Newton.

The Get To know Newton incentive provides a check of up to $10,000 for homebuyers who purchase a newly constructed single-family home in Newton. Homebuyers who purchase a property at a price between $100,000 and $179,999 receive $5,000. Homebuyers who purchase a home a price of at least $180,000 receive $10,000.

Newton offers two-bedroom homes at a median price of $124,950, making this spot an affordable and welcoming place for homebuyers looking to relocate.


As more employees work remotely, several states are incentivizing new residents to move there by offering attractive home-buying programs. Whether you’re looking for a check, assistance with your down payment or closing costs, or access to a network of residents, you can select from the above cities and states when considering where to move.

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