Rural life often gets a bad rap: There’s no culture, no convenience, and locals are uneducated, we hear. It’s high time we examine the benefits of living in the country, writes Trent Hamm in the Christian Science Monitor. Indeed, the lifestyle can provide “a lot of economic and social opportunity,” Hamm writes. First off, “the cost of living is stunningly low,” for land, housing, bills and property taxes—not to mention food. How’s $15 for a pair of professional-quality cakes? You may not make a lot of money, but you won't need to, either.
Meanwhile, it’s much easier to focus on what you’re doing. You can leave behind the sounds of traffic, canvassers at your door, the need for quick runs to the store: “You don’t have a store a mile away, so you plan more carefully for your groceries and just use what you have.” As for culture, almost anywhere in the US has a city just a few hours away. And rural schools actually have an advantage over suburban schools: a great teacher-student ratio. Hamm himself lives in the city, but after his recent visit to family, "we may just be living in the country before too long." (Read more rural America stories.)