Whether it’s for a new job, retirement, or simply to find a new start in life, people will relocate at some point in their lives.
Before taking the plunge into finding a new city to call home, there are a few things to consider when relocating.
Cost of Living
This is so crucial. Before you move, you need to know how your financial situation will compare to what you’re used to. You may be pleasantly surprised, or you may have to pick yourself up off the floor from shock of the increased cost of living in a different city. Cost of living includes food and groceries, transportation to housing costs – and everything in between.
Weather is another huge factor to consider before making a move. Do you need warm weather and sunshine, or are cold winters more your thing? Maybe you land somewhere in the middle and enjoy a variety of seasons. Whatever type of person you are, research the type of weather that a location typically has to ensure you will be happy with the climate and conditions. Especially if you love being outdoors, the weather can impact your quality of life and the range of activities you can enjoy in your spare time.
Oh, taxes. Nobody likes them, but we all have to pay them. Research to see if the state where you are considering moving to has a state income tax. Also, check out property and sales tax percentages to see how they compare to where you are now living.
What is the average commute time for working people in a city? How long does it typically take to get downtown from the suburbs? What are the traffic patterns? Is there mass transit, or is the community bike-friendly? A long or short commute can make or break your day, so check on commute times (and transportation options) for cities and surrounding areas.
If you don’t have children, the quality of the school district may not be a huge concern for you. However, if you do have children, this is a definite priority. You will want to ensure the city/area you are moving to has good and safe schools for your children to attend. Even if you don’t have children, buying a home in an area with good schools increases your property value and is a huge benefit when/if you want to sell your home in the future.
Quality of Life
A good quality of life, balance, happiness – these are the things we all try to achieve daily.
Does the city have a big arts and culture scene? Entertainment? Cool restaurants? Sports teams? Outdoor recreational activities?
When considering relocating to another city, ensure the new location will have the features that you need to have the quality of life you desire.
If you know someone who lives in a city you are considering moving to, great! Be sure to poll your friends and local resources to get candid insider information.