For a lot of busy parents, the ability to work from home is a godsend. Now, thanks to one state’s rapidly aging population, there’s a place that will pay you to do it. Vermont is offering 300 people up to $10,000 to cover moving expenses if they relocate anywhere in the state but work remotely for an out-of-state employer. Burlington. Yes. Montpelier. Of course. The slopes of Stowe Mountain Resort. Yes, you can even on Mountain Road.
As one of only seven states with a population under the one million residents, Vermont has had trouble getting more people to move in. Despite the fact that it’s arguably one of the most beautiful, healthy, and safe states to live in — not to mention home to everyone’s favorite disheveled socialist Bernie Sanders and ice cream. As a result, the state has been struggling to replenish its shrinking tax-base.
Based on the most recent Census data, close to half of Vermonters are older than 42.8-years-old, and the median age keeps rising. In fact, when you compare Vermont’s median age to the other 49 states, it’s second only to Maine, where the median age is around 44-years-old. Vermont’s even older than the retirement hotbed of Florida — a state some jokingly refer to as ‘God’s Waiting Room.’
If anything, the fact that the state is actively trying to offset its shrinking tax-base says a lot about its commitment to making the economics of life easier to manage for families and everyday folks. A smaller tax base means higher taxes for those who do live there. Once the tax base shrinks to a certain size, many of the social benefits and safety nets that protect every day Vermonters become harder to pay for. Pennsylvania is going through a similar conundrum but has yet to offer a program that literally pays people to move there.
This isn’t the only step that Vermont is taking to get people to move there. The Green Mountain State has also implemented “Stay to Stay Weekends,” where people who visit the state are encouraged to network with local businesses during four pre-planned weekends between April and October. Still, if you’re thinking of taking the plunge and moving, you’d better get going. The remote-worker grants are available on or after January 1, 2019, and beyond that are very limited. The state has only budgeted for 100 remote-workers annually for three years. The number will drop to 20 remote-workers for every year after that.