If you’ve just graduated, divorced, or you just feel stagnant about where you are, now may be the right time to move out of state. Although moving to a new place can be hard, especially if you’re moving to a new state, sometimes it is necessary.
Depending on your safety, career, political views, or other important factors, moving out of state may be the best path to start afresh. In a recent Gallup poll, approximately 33 percent of Americans considered moving out of state.
Benefits of Moving Out of State
Are you debating on whether moving out of state is a good idea? It all depends on your current situation and the available opportunities. However, there are several indisputable benefits of moving out of state, including:
If you’re looking for new opportunities, moving to a new state can make this possible. Some of the opportunities you can get include, new job, business opportunities, new interests to pursue, and you can engage in various leisure activities among several other options you never had a chance to try. Moving out of state can also help you enhance your skills, expand your knowledge, and improve the overall quality of your life.
A Fresh Start
If you’re sick and tired of your daily routine or you want to get away from your past mistakes or even your current situation, moving out of state will give you the opportunity to start afresh. This means that you can forget some of the things you don’t like in your life:
- By moving to a new state, you will get a new job and a new home. This means you have the opportunity to find your dream job and create your dream home. When you achieve these goals, you will live a happier, more comfortable, more fulfilling, and more enjoyable life.
- You will move to a new area with new and exciting places where you can explore and enjoy new experiences. Changing the scenery will break your humdrum routine, and you can get out of the rut.
- Because it will be difficult and expensive to move all your earthly possessions when moving, you will be motivated to leave behind the unnecessary items that you don’t like. You will get rid of clutter and only surround yourself with the things that are dear to you.
No one in your new neighborhood will know you. And this means that you can start with a clean slate. Leave behind your bad friends, bad experiences, bad memories, and drop those bad habits. Moving out of state can help you become the person you have always wanted to be.
A new environment can help broaden your horizons by:
- Getting out of your comfort zone and handling the unknown without the safety net of friends or family. This will make you a more resilient, stronger, and self-reliant person.
- Encountering harsh challenges will help you define your priorities and discover your true self.
- Facing different cultural practices, ways of life, and social attitudes will increase your knowledge and make you a more tolerant and open-minded person.
When you move to a new state, you will meet new people, get new neighbors, and new co-workers. You will also get the opportunity to join local organizations, new professional groups, and hobby clubs. Your social circle will expand, and you will start new relationships.
Improve Your Health
According to a recent study by Scholars, moving to a new place can be good for your health. Mental stagnation resulting from stress from your daily routine can quickly wear you down. Eventually, this may cause psychological strain. Moving to a new state can rejuvenate both your body and mind and alleviate those mental burdens you have been shouldering. Moving to warmer areas can help cure some ailments like arthritis and some respiratory complications.
The bottom line is that moving out of state will give you new opportunities to create a better life. However, before you can decide to move, you also need to consider the negative side of making such a big decision.
Disadvantages of Moving Out of State
There are several reasons why you should consider moving out of state – the high cost of living, unsatisfactory employment, and a desire to change your current environment. Yet, moving such a long distance can be expensive, arduous, and emotionally-draining. Keep in mind that the outcome may not be a happy one.
You Will Be Far From Your Loved Ones
Parting with your friends and loved ones is probably the hardest part of moving to a new place. Although you can stay in touch with them through phone calls or video chats, it won’t be the same as spending quality time with them.
You won’t be able to hug them, engage in one of your favorite activities, or even share a meal. This may make you feel lonely, even after you have made friends in your new place. You will still miss your family and old pals.
The cultural practice in your new area may be totally different from what you’re used to. For instance, you may not understand the slang used in your new area, you may not have access to brands that you’re used to, and you may not be able to practice that favorite activity you always enjoy.
Even though you may just be moving a few states away, you may still experience cultural shock, and you have to adapt.
After you have moved to a new state, you will be in a totally new environment:
- You won’t know anything about the new place. For example, the best places to go and shop, eat, or even chill out. This may make you feel like a complete stranger.
- After moving, for the first few weeks or months, the new area won’t feel like home.
- You will have to adapt to your new job and the new lifestyle.
- You will have to find a new beauty salon or barber, a new doctor, and a new favorite restaurant. You will also have to establish an entirely new routine.
It Will Be Expensive
Moving is always an expensive task, especially when you’re moving to another state. The cost of moving mainly depends on the distance to your new area, and the weight of your items.
Therefore, you will pay more if you’re moving far from home and if you have more belongings. Although there are some efficient ways to cut on moving costs, when moving out of state, you will have to dig deeper into your pocket.
Bonus tip: To be on the safe side, consider purchasing moving insurance, and have your valuables and delicate items professionally packed.
Expect to incur high travel expenses as you move to a new state – plane tickets can be expensive, and driving yourself will also require money for gas, lodgings, and meals along the way. Additionally, living expenses for the first few months will be high.
Remember that you need a security deposit for your new house, you need to buy stuff for your new home, you will be eating out often, and you won’t know the best stores that offer great deals for quality products.
How to Plan to Move Out of State
Now that you have decided to move to a new state, you should know that the move won’t be easy. To make things easier, you should prepare a checklist.
Why a Checklist?
Our brains tend to break when stressed. According to Amy Morin from Forbes, “human beings don’t think clearly when pressured or overwhelmed.” What’s more, decision making is among the resource-intensive activities humans engage in. Therefore, the more decisions you have to make within a certain time, the more tired you will become.
But you can avoid this whole dilemma by preparing a list of all the tasks you want to accomplish ahead of time. With a checklist, you won’t be worried about which task to complete when. Prepare your list beforehand and use it as a reference when you wake up in the morning to make sure that everything is on track.
A checklist can make moving out of state easier. Below is a good checklist that will enable you to move swiftly to your new area.
Two Months Before Moving
At this point, you should be preparing to prepare for the move. For the next two weeks, focus on planning, prepping and organizing, and ticking off various activities, such as:
Preparing a moving file: This binder will help you organize all the documents you will need. Additionally, it is a great way to relieve stress and remain focused.
Print the checklist: Print off your moving checklist and file it in your moving binder for easier reference.
Buy moving supplies: If you’re the type of person who enjoys DIYs and you want to handle the moving task by yourself, get all the necessary supplies.
Explore the new neighborhood: Before you can even look for a house to rent, first choose the neighborhood where you would want to live. Some of the things you should consider include schools, hospitals, restaurants, and other amenities.
Schedule appointments: If you need to see anyone before you leave, now is the right time. Book eye exams and shrink appointments. Keep in mind that your children should be up-to-date on vaccines before they can enter a new school.
Set a budget: Now that your head is still clear and you’re psychologically prepared for the move, proceed to set a moving budget. Your budget should include how much you will spend in a house, meals, and travel costs, among others.
Six Weeks Before Moving
By now, you should have an official date on when you want to move. This date is important as it will determine when movers will be ready for you, when to turn off and on utilities, and when to enlist the assistance of a friend. If you haven’t yet picked a date, focus on doing so before you give your attention to any other items in your checklist.
After setting the date, you can proceed to:
Buy plane tickets: If you decide to fly, now is the time to get your tickets.
Plan about your car shipment: If you’re not driving to your new area, hire a shipper to move your car before you even move out.
Get a secure house: By now, you should know where you want to move to. In case you’re unable to buy or rent a home before you get to your destination, consider some short-term rentals.
Declutter: A general rule of thumb is to never Declutter after moving. Ensure that you do it before. Sort through your personal items and get rid of as many things as possible, you can donate some of the items you no longer use.
Research and hire a moving company: Moving has its share of risks, especially if you’re moving out of state. When relocating to a faraway place, ensure that you research and hire a moving company that is well equipped. Such movers will make your move safe and easy. Before you hire a mover, check the following information:
- Is their registration up-to-date?
- Information on their employees, motor vehicle insurance, and liability insurance
- An identification number issued by the U.S. Department of Transport
Most moving companies will have this information readily available, sometimes even on their website. If you find a moving company that is unable to provide you with this information, this should raise some red flags. It’s also advisable that you check reviews from other customers to help you determine the quality of a moving company.
Schedule favors: Notify your friends or family about any assistance you may need.
Contact your old utility company: Contact your current utility company and confirm the shut-off date. These include electricity, internet, and cable companies. If your landlord takes care of these utilities, then you don’t have to worry about it. Before you move to a new state, it’s important that you also arrange on when to activate utilities at your new house. Some property managers may handle this for you, but in other cases, you’ll have to do it yourself.
If you’re using a realtor, get in touch with them or your landlord on how to set up utilities like gas, water, telecommunication, and electricity services.
Hang out with friends and family: As the moving day draws nearer, time will be more valuable. Therefore, ensure that you set enough time in your checklist to spend with those you love.
Decide if you should sell your car or not: if you decide you don’t want your car to be shipped to your new area, plan about selling it. There are several platforms and dealers who can help you out.
One Month Before Moving
By now, you have already made most of the major decisions. All that remains is to check items off your list and see them through. In the next two weeks, you should:
Come up with a packing plan: Packing can be a daunting task. Therefore, make plans for tackling the packing job.
Organize records: Collect all passports, birth certificates, deeds, social security cards, medical records, titles, and pet documents and put them all in one place and carry them with you during the move.
Plan your route: Now, it’s time to figure out the route you’ll take to your new home. If you’re driving to your destination, you will also have to determine where you will stay along the way.
Declutter your fridge: Start by using the perishable items. Next, drain the pantry and eat the emergency supplies you have set aside in case of an earthquake or any other natural disaster.
Hire professional cleaners: If you intend to use professional cleaners after you move, you should book them now.
Two Weeks Before Your Out of State Move
Time is running out, and you need more concrete plans about the moving date. Some of the tasks you should be handling now include:
Change address and forward your mail for important accounts: This includes banks, government institutions, and cell phone service providers whose services you will continue using even after moving. USPS allows you to change your address online. Additionally, you also need to let your friends and family know your new address.
Transfer to a renter’s insurance: If you’re planning to rent, contact your insurance company and transfer your home insurance to your new home. This becomes effective during the move-in date.
Transfer all medical records: When moving, medical records are the last thing on your mind. But when you transfer them as early as now, the entire process will be a lot smoother. Instead of struggling to get copies of your medical records sent when you need them in your new area, pay a visit to your physician and dentist before you leave. When you have printed copies, you can take them with you and provide them to your new doctor.
Confirm with the moving company: Get in touch with the moving company and confirm all the final details.
One Week Before You Move
Now you’re almost ready to move. Remain focused by:
Packing a “Move-in Box”: This box will contain easy snacks, utensils, a one-pot meal, napkins, a first aid kit, paper towels, and toiletries.
Finish parking: Ensure that you have taped all boxes two days before the moving trucks arrive.
The Day Before You Move
You’re now winding down to the end of the moving checklist. You should now focus more on the finishing touches that will make the transition from your old home to your new home smooth. The day before you move, ensure that you:
Set aside your most treasured and valuable items: Put out your jewelry, documents, and other important items in your car or suitcase.
Pack some snacks: Ensure that no one goes hungry when moving.
Drain gas and oil from outdoor equipment: if you’re taking your weed whackers, mowers, or other fueled outdoor equipment with you, remember to drain them.
Deliver the car: Now is also the best time to give your car keys to the new owner.
You’re nearly done with your checklist. But before you start celebrating, make sure that you complete these tasks perfectly:
Clear the pathway: Before loading your possessions into the truck, move all the boxes out of the way so that the path from your house to the van is clean.
Do a last check: after packing everything into the van, do a last walk-through of the house, attic, basement, yard, and garage. Open the cupboards and closets and check every nook and cranny.
How to Adjust After Moving
By this time, you have moved across state lines, and you have found yourself a new home. It is completely normal to feel out of place. Everything around you is different and unfamiliar, and the situation can sometimes be confusing.
You have no idea how to get your life back; however, adjusting to your new surroundings is not as hard and daunting as many can see it. There is no specific method or formula for adjusting to a new place. But with an open mind and a positive attitude, you can make it.
Do Your Research on Your New Place of Residence
Learn as much as possible about your new place of residence well in advance. Visit your new state government’s website to get some info about education, businesses, leisure, and way of life in that area. There are some counties and cities that have websites that offer specific information about the area you moved to. Additionally, you can follow local blogs and join local forums. It will be best if you know what to expect in another state well in advance.
Become Familiar With Your New Surrounding
Learn more and familiarize yourself with the local parks, malls, markets, and other places you might want to visit. If you will be using public transportation, make sure to get a bus route as well as a map to aid you in learning your way around your new home.
If you have your own car, take some time to explore the state and start with your neighborhood. You can familiarize more with the people around you by:
- Introducing yourself to neighbors
- Throwing a housewarming party
- Being friendly
- Getting yourself involved in community life
- Ask your new neighbors for help whenever you need it
- Get a driver’s license from your new state residence
When you move to a new state, you usually have thirty days to change your license; however, this might vary depending on the state you are in. Although this might seem like a daunting task, it will be over soon. The process is simple, and every state has its own requirements for issuing a Driving license as well as an Identity card.
Make Sure Your New Home Is Safe
You will not be able to relax in your new home unless you know that you are safe. Set up an appointment and have the security system changed.
Crime is everywhere, but you can never be too cautious when it comes to defending the people you love as well as protecting your belongings. Make sure you change the locks of your new home since you don’t know who else might be having some extra keys to the house.
It is always important to take care of yourself physically. Exercise is important, especially when you have stressors like homesickness.
According to a recent study by Mayo Clinic, exercise can help relieve both short term and long term anxiety and depression. Apart from helping you feel better, taking your exercise out will offer you a chance to meet new people and relieve homesickness.
Get a New Phone Number
You will have to change your phone information. Moving to a new state means changing your provider or even your number. The best thing to do before changing your service provider is to research which ones are best for your area.
Stay in Touch With Your Old Life
Never lose touch with the people you love, no matter the distance. You don’t have to sever the bonds with your old life just because you have moved to a new place. Fortunately, in this high tech world, you can easily get in touch with your friends and family even if they are far away. Good friends, no matter the distance between you, can help you adjust and accept your new environment easily.
Accept and Appreciate Your New Home
Accepting and appreciating your new home for what it is the best way to adjust. Although the new state might not be perfect, learn to look at the positive side of things.
Start a New Chapter
Moving out of state is a big decision, but you get to start a new chapter in your life. Now that you know everything on how to plan to move out of state, you can easily complete your journey with ease.
Whether you’re looking to retire in a sunny and quiet place, or you want to transition to a big city like New York, take your time before you make this decision, and follow the above tips for a smooth move across state lines.