Big city life is not so appealing to Americans anymore. More Americans are leaning towards a rural location. Across some of the largest cities in the U.S. chunks of the population are moving away to rural areas in the country.
In a 2020 Gallup survey, almost 50 percent of Americans said they are considering moving to a small town or rural area in the country. Entrepreneurs are finding more local success, homeowners are enjoying a lower cost of living and employees are reporting better wellbeing statistics. However, along with the perks of moving to the country, getting the transition from city to country life is important to get right. To smoothen the adjustment and make the move a success, here are some tips that can help you succeed as you get ready to move to the country.
How Good Are Your Self Sufficiency and Independence Skills?
Living in the country comes with a lot of space. While the benefits of increased access to nature are great for your physical and mental wellbeing, it can also challenge you to change your attitude on self-sufficiency and easy access to amenities. The term ‘next door’ takes on a whole new meaning when living in the country and in some cases, it can be quite remote. Since it may not be as convenient to run to the grocery store or hospital, it is recommended that you brush up on your first aid skills and stock up on essentials such as food items. Also, make sure you are comfortable with basic DIY maintenance around the house and for your car.
Prepare Your Finances for the Move
Living in the country is often championed to be cheaper- and this is true in some respects. For instance, an estimate by Wealth Meta claims house prices are 30 percent cheaper in rural areas. While you can get a lot more for your money when moving to the country, the landscape is rapidly changing. Rural house prices are rising now that more people are trading in their city homes for ranches and country homes. So while the cost of living is still lower, it is mainly due to the difference in housing costs (a gap that is rapidly closing).
Other elements such as transport and property taxes can rapidly erase any financial benefits of moving to the country if you are smart about your financial planning. For instance, rural states like Texas and Illinois have some of the highest property tax rates in the country. With tax rates ranging from 1.2 to 2 percent of your property value, buying a larger chunk of land in the country can drastically impact your finances. In addition to planning for the increase in tax duties, Texas landowners can take advantage of Texas wildlife exemptions or other relief measures to reduce the cost of owning land in the country. With a wildlife exemption, Texas landowners can pay as little as $0.50-$2.00 per acre in property taxes.
Find Local Support
Because of the smaller population, communities in country areas can be tight-knit and friendly. If you are moving from the city, your neighbors and community members will be invaluable as a social base- great for combating the isolation or loneliness that can crop up. Start with visiting the community you plan on moving to beforehand. Introduce yourself to your neighbors and get to know about any local community events like book clubs or community groups that can be opportunities to socialize.
Moving to the country can be a great choice if you are prepared for the change in the pace of life. It is quite different from the hustle and bustle of living in the city but if you plan it right, it can be a welcome change.