Remote work has boomed during the pandemic, and being locked down in a small apartment has driven many people to re-evaluate their choice to live in metropolitan cities. Large cities had the sharpest drop in population during the pandemic, as people migrated and searched for living in more suburban areas, while keeping their coastal, remote jobs.
As remote workers search for a great place to set their roots, Omaha makes a strong case. The city’s population grew by around 1% in both 2020 and 2021, with over 20,000 people moving to the area since 2019.
Here are a few reasons that make Omaha a great base for those working remotely.
Your dollar goes farther with a lower cost of living
According to Payscale, Omaha’s cost of living is 8% below the national average. Housing is 11% cheaper than the national average, with a median home price of $308,136 and median rent of $965.26.
Compared to higher cost of living areas, your dollar can be stretched much farther in Omaha and allows for more disposable income or a higher standard of living. You’ll be able to get a larger living space in Omaha, and it can be really nice to have the extra elbow room. Especially when considering your home office space, you might be able to get a separate office instead of working from your couch.
The Silicon Prairie is home to several top companies
According to Livibility’s 2016 list of Best Cities for Entrepreneurs, Omaha was ranked #27 because of the high-growth startups in agribusiness, e-commerce, financial services, and software-as-a-service companies.
Omaha is home to many well-established global companies like Valmont Industries, HDR, Werner Enterprises, Berkshire Hathaway, and Kiewit. Several high-growth tech companies have decided to call Omaha home like Breeze, Workshop, OpsCompass, and SecureSky.
Some factors driving business growth is the low cost of living, friendly Midwest values, and an average commute of less than 20 minutes. There are also several government resources dedicated to bringing companies into the area.
Increased options for entertainment
Let’s be honest, Omaha is not the top destination for entertainment options. However, several construction projects are in the works to open new areas for nightlife, dining, and shopping. Learn more about Omaha’s newest developments.
Main entertainment districts like the Old Market, Midtown, Blackstone, Benson, and the up-and-coming Little Bohemia offer many options for great restaurants, lively bars, shopping, and events.
Large attractions like the Omaha World Series bring baseball fans into Omaha from all around the world every June, and the Henry Doorly Zoo attracts global visitors as well. The warmer months hold other smaller events like the Maha Music Festival, farmers markets, and food truck rallies. There are also many options for weekend fun for families.
Live local, work coastal
With the boom in remote work, there are more companies than ever hiring their employees from anywhere in the world. Previously, if you wanted to work for a Silicon Valley tech company, you’d need to move to the Bay Area – but now those opportunities are available while staying in the Midwest.
LinkedIn’s remote job search feature allows you to easily find job listings open to anyone, anywhere. Other work-from-home job hunt options include WeWorkRemotely.com, Remote.co, WorkingNomads.co.
Working for a larger company based on the coast is a great way to get the benefits of working in big cities without the higher cost of living and other headaches.
The Midwest’s friendly and community-oriented mindset
In 2013, the University of Cambridge did a study on personality traits between 1.5 million people around the world, and found that people in the Midwest were more likely to be extraverted, agreeable, and conscientious.
When it comes down to it, Midwesterners are just nice! Many communities are very tight-knit and look out for their neighbors. You’ll often see people greet each other while passing on the sidewalk, holding doors open for one another, and generally being courteous.
According to WalletHub’s 2021 study on the most and least stressed states, Nebraska is one of the least stressed states at #44. They also found that Nebraska ranked favorably for highest job security and most affordable housing.
The pandemic has shifted people’s priorities, and made remote workers look for places that give them a better bang for their buck and offer more room to grow. With Omaha’s growing tech community, low cost of living, increased entertainment options, and Midwest values, the city offers a great place for singles, couples, and families to move to and thrive.