Looking for a well-paying job but want to live in a rural area? You’re not alone. Many people dream of escaping crowded cities and enjoying a slower pace of life in the countryside. The good news is, there are plenty of high paying jobs you can find in rural settings if you know where to look.
If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Skilled trades like plumbers and electricians, healthcare jobs like nurses and physicians, remote work in tech or business, and jobs in transportation, energy, and agriculture can offer salaries of $50,000 or more in rural areas.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll highlight over 15 in-demand roles with strong earning potential that are accessible across small towns and remote countrysides. We’ll include details on median pay, job outlook, education requirements, and day-to-day responsibilities.
Whether you’re looking for a hands-on gig or want to work from home, you’ll discover rural jobs that align with your skills and interests.
Plumbing is an essential service that is always in demand, regardless of the location. In rural areas, the need for skilled plumbers is just as crucial as in urban areas. Plumbers are responsible for installing, repairing, and maintaining plumbing systems in residential, commercial, and industrial buildings.
They ensure that water supply and drainage systems are functioning properly. With the rise in construction projects and infrastructure development in rural areas, there is a growing demand for plumbers.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for plumbers was $55,160 in May 2020, making it a highly lucrative career choice.
Electricians play a vital role in rural communities by ensuring the safe installation and maintenance of electrical systems. They are responsible for wiring buildings, installing lighting fixtures, and troubleshooting electrical issues.
As rural areas continue to expand and modernize, the demand for skilled electricians is on the rise. Electricians can work in various settings, including residential, commercial, and industrial. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that electricians earned a median annual wage of $56,900 in May 2020.
This high earning potential, combined with the satisfaction of providing a vital service, makes electricians an attractive career choice.
Welding is a versatile skill that is in demand across various industries, including construction, manufacturing, and automotive. In rural areas, where agriculture and farming are prevalent, welders are needed to repair and maintain equipment and machinery.
Welders use specialized equipment to join metal parts together, ensuring their durability and strength. According to the American Welding Society, the average annual income for welders in the United States is around $45,000, but highly skilled welders can earn significantly more.
With the right training and experience, welders can find lucrative job opportunities in rural areas.
These skilled trades offer excellent career prospects and high earning potential in rural areas. Whether you choose to become a plumber, electrician, or welder, you can enjoy the benefits of a stable job market and the satisfaction of providing essential services to your community.
It’s important to note that these professions require specialized training and certification, but the investment in your education will pay off in the long run. So, if you’re considering a high-paying job in a rural area, exploring the opportunities in skilled trades is a great place to start.
When it comes to high-paying jobs in rural areas, the healthcare industry is a promising field to explore. Rural communities often have limited access to healthcare services, creating a demand for healthcare professionals. Here are some lucrative healthcare careers you can pursue in rural areas:
Nursing is a highly in-demand profession, and rural areas are no exception. In fact, nurses play a vital role in providing primary care and support to residents in remote communities. They work closely with physicians and other healthcare professionals to ensure the well-being of patients.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for registered nurses was $75,330 in 2020. With the increasing need for healthcare services in rural areas, the demand for nurses is expected to continue to grow.
Physicians are essential in rural areas, where access to specialized medical care may be limited. Rural physicians often have the opportunity to work in a variety of settings, such as clinics, hospitals, and private practices.
They provide comprehensive healthcare services to patients, diagnose illnesses, and develop treatment plans. The median annual wage for physicians and surgeons was $100,980 in 2020, making it a highly rewarding career in rural areas.
Oral health is an important aspect of overall well-being, and access to dental care is crucial in rural communities. Dentists in rural areas have the opportunity to make a significant impact by providing essential dental services to residents.
They perform dental procedures, diagnose oral diseases, and educate patients about oral hygiene. According to the American Dental Association, the average net income for general dentists in private practice was $205,960 in 2019.
With the shortage of dental practitioners in rural areas, dentists can enjoy a stable and financially rewarding career.
These healthcare careers not only offer high earning potential but also provide the satisfaction of making a difference in the lives of individuals residing in rural communities. Whether you choose to become a nurse, physician, or dentist, your skills and expertise will be highly valued and appreciated by the people you serve.
Living in a rural area doesn’t mean you have to settle for low-paying jobs. Thanks to the rise of technology and the internet, remote jobs have become a popular option for those seeking high-paying opportunities.
Remote jobs allow individuals to work from the comfort of their own homes or any location with internet access, making them perfect for rural areas. Here are some high-paying remote jobs you can get in rural areas:
Software development is a field that offers great opportunities for remote work. With the increasing demand for digital solutions, software developers are in high demand. Whether it’s developing mobile apps, web applications, or software systems, software developers can work remotely and earn a handsome income.
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for software developers in 2020 was $110,140.
Accounting is another profession that can be done remotely. Many businesses, both big and small, require the services of accountants to manage their financial records and ensure compliance with tax regulations.
Remote accountants can work for multiple clients or even start their own accounting businesses. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for accountants and auditors in 2020 was $73,560.
Customer Service Representatives
Customer service representatives play a crucial role in ensuring customer satisfaction and maintaining positive relationships with clients. Many companies now offer remote customer service positions, allowing individuals in rural areas to work from home and earn a competitive salary.
These roles often involve handling customer inquiries, providing support, and resolving issues. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for customer service representatives in 2020 was $35,400.
These are just a few examples of high-paying remote jobs that can be pursued in rural areas. The internet has opened up a world of opportunities, allowing individuals to work in high-paying professions without the need to relocate to a big city.
So, if you’re looking for a rewarding career in a rural setting, consider exploring remote job options.
When it comes to high-paying jobs in rural areas, the transportation industry offers a range of opportunities. Whether it’s transporting people or goods, there are several lucrative careers to consider.
Becoming a pilot can be a dream come true for many aviation enthusiasts. In rural areas, there is often a demand for pilots to transport passengers or cargo to remote locations. Pilots can work for regional airlines, charter companies, or even private individuals.
The average salary for pilots can vary depending on the type of aircraft they fly and their level of experience. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers was $147,220 in May 2020.
Truck driving is another high-paying job that is in demand in rural areas. With the increasing need for goods to be transported across the country, truck drivers play a crucial role in the supply chain.
They transport goods from manufacturing plants to distribution centers or directly to retail stores. The average salary for truck drivers can vary based on factors such as experience, type of truck, and the distance traveled.
According to the American Trucking Associations, the average annual salary for a truck driver in the United States is around $55,000.
Logisticians are professionals who coordinate and analyze the movement of goods and materials. They work with transportation companies, manufacturers, and retailers to ensure that products are delivered efficiently and on time.
In rural areas, logisticians may work closely with truck drivers and other transportation professionals to optimize routes and streamline operations. The average salary for logisticians can vary depending on the industry and level of experience.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median annual wage for logisticians was $76,270 in May 2020.
It’s important to note that while these jobs offer high earning potential, they may also require specific training and certifications. Aspiring pilots, for example, need to obtain a commercial pilot’s license, while truck drivers must have a commercial driver’s license.
However, with the right qualifications and dedication, these transportation careers can provide excellent opportunities for those seeking high-paying jobs in rural areas.
Rural areas are often rich in natural resources, making the energy sector a promising field for high-paying jobs. Here are some energy-related careers that can be found in rural areas:
Power Plant Operators
Power plant operators play a crucial role in generating electricity for both urban and rural areas. They are responsible for operating and maintaining power plants, ensuring that they run smoothly and efficiently.
These professionals monitor the production and distribution of electricity, troubleshoot any issues that arise, and make adjustments as needed. With the increasing demand for sustainable energy sources, power plant operators in rural areas are now also involved in managing renewable energy facilities, such as wind farms or solar power plants.
Line workers, also known as electrical linemen, are essential in the energy industry as they install, maintain, and repair power lines that transmit electricity from power plants to homes, businesses, and other facilities.
In rural areas, where power lines often stretch over long distances, line workers play a crucial role in ensuring that electricity reaches remote locations. These professionals are skilled in working with high-voltage electrical systems, climbing poles, and using specialized equipment to perform their tasks safely and efficiently.
They may also be involved in responding to power outages caused by storms or other emergencies.
Rural areas with oil and gas reserves offer excellent opportunities for petroleum engineers. These professionals are involved in the exploration, extraction, and production of oil and gas resources. They use advanced technologies and techniques to determine the best methods for extracting these resources in a safe and cost-effective manner.
Petroleum engineers also play a crucial role in environmental impact assessments, ensuring that extraction activities are carried out responsibly and in compliance with regulations. With the increasing demand for energy worldwide, petroleum engineers in rural areas can expect lucrative job prospects.
Rural areas often have a strong agricultural industry, providing numerous high-paying job opportunities. Here are some of the high-paying jobs you can get in the field of agriculture:
Farmers and Ranchers
Farmers and ranchers play a crucial role in sustaining the agricultural industry in rural areas. They cultivate crops, raise livestock, and manage agricultural operations. With advancements in technology and agricultural practices, farmers and ranchers can earn significant incomes.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the average income for farmers and ranchers in 2020 was $67,950 per year. They also have the opportunity to increase their income through various government programs and subsidies aimed at supporting the agricultural sector.
Agricultural inspectors ensure that agricultural products meet quality and safety standards. They inspect farms, processing plants, and transportation facilities to ensure compliance with regulations. In rural areas, agricultural inspectors play a crucial role in maintaining the integrity of the agricultural industry.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for agricultural inspectors was $46,170 in 2020. The demand for these professionals is expected to grow in the future, making it a promising career option for those interested in agriculture.
Food scientists play a vital role in the agricultural industry by conducting research and development to improve food production, safety, and quality. They work on developing new food products, analyzing nutritional value, and ensuring compliance with regulations.
In rural areas, food scientists can work in research institutions, government agencies, or private companies. According to the American Society of Agronomy, the median annual wage for food scientists was $70,990 in 2020.
With the increasing demand for sustainable and safe food production, the job prospects for food scientists in rural areas are promising.
Living in the countryside and earning a high salary is completely achievable with a bit of strategic planning. Focusing your job search on in-demand roles like healthcare, trades, and technology is key.
With the right education and experience, you can secure a lucrative rural job that allows you to enjoy nature and escape the busyness of urban life.
The jobs highlighted in this article are just a sampling of the many possibilities out there. Do your research to find remote-friendly employers in your target field as well as ones with locations in the specific rural community you want to live in.
Be persistent and open-minded, and your ideal role that combines country living with a hearty paycheck could be right around the corner.