If you’re considering moving for a job, there are many things you need to think about. New people, new schools, new hobbies and activities, and so much more are in store for you in your new place. There are endless logistics you will need to think about when moving to a different city or state, so we have outlined seven of the top things to know before moving for work.
Perhaps the most important thing everyone considers when moving for work is their family, especially those who have children. You should do some research beforehand to know what the schools in the area are like and decipher if private or public school would be better for your family’s needs. A simple Google search of schools in the area will give you an idea of which consistently perform better and might be more attractive to your family.
Doing some research about which areas of your new town are safer than others is also a must when preparing to move. You’ll want to become familiar with the different areas of town and make sure to pick one that will be safe for you and your family. There are plenty of websites available that allow you to look up crime rates and recommendations, so be sure to do your research when looking for a new home.
If your spouse or significant other will be looking for work, make sure there are options wherever you are going. Some industries have “boomed” in certain areas compared to others, so you’ll want to make sure his or her credentials will be able to get him or her employment at your destination. Having an idea of how in-demand his or her skillset is in your new area can help you determine how difficult finding employment will be, if at all.
Moving somewhere new can be exciting but also very scary, especially if you are relocating to a place where you don’t know a single person. There is no question relationships are key regardless where you live. We all desire (and need) to have human connections, preferably with people we don’t live in the same house with. When you move for a job, you should do some digging into the people at your destination.
Having at least just one person we know and trust nearby can make us much more comfortable where we are living; therefore, making sure you know what the local community is like before you move somewhere for your job is critical so you know what to expect there. When you’re doing your research to decide which neighborhood to live in, make sure you try to get a general idea of what your neighbors will be like.
Of course, one of the chief complaints movers have is that they’re leaving their friends in their current place, but promising to FaceTime/talk/text and making sure there’s a decent route, flight, or halfway meetup spot and making plans to visit one another can alleviate the sadness.
Budgeting: First Moving Costs, and then New Cost of Living
If you’re generally one of those people who doesn’t formally sit and write out a budget plan, that’s fine, but it is highly encouraged movers do so. Moving expenses can certainly add up! Of course, you’ll need the movers, moving truck, and/or shipping container, but if you’re moving far you may also need to spend a night or two (or three or four) at hotels and that can get expensive. The farther you go, the more expensive it will probably be. Have pets, too? Tack on extra time, expenses and space/accommodations needed.
Next, budget for your new life. Everybody knows the cost of living varies greatly from state to state. Salaries are sometimes adjusted to accommodate living costs, but not always. The prices of constant basic needs also vary greatly, such as fuel prices and groceries. One-time expenses can add up, too. For example, registering your car in a new state can cost several hundred dollars and overall just be a hassle. Make sure you know if your living expenses are going to go up or down so you can plan for both short term and long-term expenses and savings.
Relocation Expenses – You or the Company? Pods or movers? Relocation bonus?
Many people are hesitant to ask their new companies if they offer relocation assistance, but you don’t have to be. Some corporations, especially large ones, offer reimbursement assistance for storage containers, moving expenses, temporary lodging while you find a new home, and so on. Although you may be concerned your question might come off as “greedy,” it can’t hurt to ask – chances are it’s been asked many times before!
The Job’s Present and Future
Even if you have a fancy job offer in hand, you’ll want to know about the long-term job sustainability. Can you move up in the company, or will you have to stay at the level you are entering at? Consider if the move will help you down the line, too, and help you get better positions a few years from now. Most people don’t want to feel “stuck,” so make sure the move will be good for you long-term.
Also, depending on what profession is, you should find out if you’ll need to get licensed in the state you are moving to. Some states offer reciprocal licensing for certain professions, but others don’t and therefore you may need to go through a certification process in your new hometown.
Things to Do, Where to Go, and How to Get Around
If you’re moving near the ocean, you’ll obviously be able to spend time along the water if you choose to. Big cities are usually easy to find things to do in, but you may be moving somewhere rural and less popular. Therefore, you should know what kind of hobbies you might take up or activities you (and the family) could be engaged in.
Google each area and see what kind of small businesses, restaurants, grocery stores, and so on are around. Google street view is very useful, especially in bigger cities, as you can literally take a virtual tour around town. Of course, this is not as helpful as actually visiting and seeing the place for yourself, but it’s close.
Transportation is another major thing to consider when moving somewhere else. If public transportation is big there, you may not need as many cars (or a car at all). You should know your route to work and what the commute will be like, as you don’t want to come in totally unaware and end up sitting in traffic jams every day.
Yes, weather deserves its own section! You should most definitely be aware of the new climate wherever you are going. Prepare to either layer up or down and consider how the heater or air conditioner may raise your electricity and/or gas bills. If you’re moving from Sunny California, USA to somewhere that gets a slew of snow per year, you may need to trade in your convertible for a nice 4-wheel drive truck. That said, if you’re moving from snow and ice to heat and sun, you might be able to get that sporty car you’ve always wanted.
Ultimately, moving for your job is undoubtedly stressful but if you have prepared well and know what you’re getting yourself into, it can be a very rewarding experience.