Top U.S. Cities and States to Live for Your Industry

As inconvenient as it may be for our personal lives, most of our careers will be impacted by where we live geographically. Some industries thrive in bustling cities, where others require the resources of deeply rural areas.

Geography isn’t the only factor that determines where the jobs are. However, it can give you a leg up in finding a job or changing jobs if you look for a home in a region that has a thriving job market in your industry.

In this article, we’re going to cover some of the main industries in the United States–industries in which many of us work–and talk about which parts of the country have a lot of jobs in those industries.

So, whether you’re just starting off in your career or looking for a change of scenery, read on for the best places to live for your industry.

Health care

Health care is needed universally. And if you’re in the industry, whether as an administrator, a nurse, or one of the other hundreds of health-related careers, the good news is that it is typically the fastest growing industry in the country.

That being said, some parts of the country favor the health science careers disproportionately. The states of Massachusetts, California, Florida, and Illinois are the four leading places in the country for jobs in healthcare.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics)

The STEM fields make up some of the highest paid and most in-demand careers in the country. They tend to be located around urban hubs. However, it isn’t just Silicon Valley that needs great workers in STEM.

First, we’ll state the obvious. San Jose, Santa Clara, and San Francisco are all bursting with high-paying jobs in the technology industries. With companies like Google, Apple, Adobe, and HP, it’s obvious why this region is known are the heart of the technological world.

However, cost of living in this area is quite high, and there are other regions with a flourishing workforce in STEM. Huntsville, Alabama has low rent prices and is home to several large tech companies like IBM and Lockheed Martin. Boulder, Colorado is another area with a quickly growing tech industry, low unemployment (2.7%), and high salary ($91,000).

Manufacturing

Manufacturing jobs have been at the forefront of conversation for years. In spite of many blue collar careers being outsourced overseas, there still remains a thriving manufacturing workforce in the following areas.

North Carolina is ranked number one in manufacturing in the United States. With plants for IBM, Goodyear, and Lenovo, there is a variety of industries that look to North Carolina for manufacturing their products.

Texas has been attracting young workers for their growing number of tech giants and reasonable cost of living. Companies like Lockheed Martin Aeronautics and  ExxonMobil make it a good place for machinists and manufacturers to live.  

Michigan and the Great Lakes cities are often thought of as being where all the manufacturing jobs fled from. However, there are still a number of large companies who are flourishing in the region. In Michigan alone resides General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, and the Dow Chemical Company.

So, if you work in one of these key industries and are on the lookout for a new place to start or continue your career, keep these cities and states in mind.

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Create a Game Plan for Saving for Your First Home

You’ve been thinking it for a while: “I really should start putting some money aside for a down payment.” But, you just can’t seem to find any wiggle room in your budget.

You’re not alone. Saving for a down payment isn’t easy. Especially if you’ve got rent, car payments, student loans, and are trying to put money aside for retirement.

In today’s post, we’re going to talk about how to make a game plan for your down payment. This way, you can start saving immediately, bringing you closer to your goal of homeownership each day.

Step 1: Give each dollar a job

The first rule of budgeting is that you need to know where each dollar you earn ends up. From there, you can start re-allocating funds to the things you want to save for.

There are many apps and tools available to help you out with this process, including YNAB (You Need A Budget) and Mint. If apps aren’t your thing, you can always use a simple spreadsheet.

First, account for all of your income. This could include your salary, rental income, or other forms of money that you have coming in.

Next, detail each of your weekly and monthly expenses. Everything from groceries to the internet bill and retirement contributions.

Step 2: Reassess your expenses

Now it’s time to make some tough decisions. Are there ways you can cut down on your weekly or monthly expenses? Maybe you aren’t using that Amazon Prime membership as much as you thought you would. Or, maybe you’ve decided you don’t really watch anything on cable but the news. There are a number of ways one might cut back on their monthly bills.

Get creative with family plans, bulk shopping for food, or cooking budget-friendly meals. All of these savings will add up quickly.

Step 3: Pay off small debts with high interest

Let’s face it, if you have thousands of dollars in student loans, you might not be able to aggressively pay them down by the time you want to move out of your apartment.

But, for small debts (under $1,000 credit card debt, for example), you could save more in the long run by paying them off and avoiding interest payments.

Step 4: Be smart about your savings

With the right savings account and credit card, you can earn money through savings interest and through cashback rewards on credit cards.

First, find a savings account with the highest possible interest rate. These can often be found from choosing an online bank who doesn’t have the overhead of running branches.

Next, direct deposit a set amount of your paycheck each week into that savings account. This way, you can be sure that you won’t dip into your down payment savings.

To generate additional income, you can use cash back rewards from credit cards for things like groceries and gas. Choose a credit card that offers the best cash back rewards for things like groceries and gas purchases. The key here is to only use your credit card on necessities and to always pay off the card in full at the end of each month.

If you follow these four steps, you should be able to streamline your down payment savings process and start saving right now.