Aug. 29, 2016
Whether you are looking to move to Denver or Denmark, there are a lot of things you need to take into consideration before moving to a new city.
When you are moving to a new city, everything is new and exciting, but it can also be a little scary. Preparing will help you get past that insecurity the unfamiliarity of a new city can bring. And overspending is almost always a result of under planning.
One of our awesome listeners has been thinking of making a move to a new city and asked us for some tips on how he can prepare. Thomas has been planning a move to Denver and will share some tips and resources he in today’s episode.
Before you move to a new city, you want to have your finances in order. Get your debt situation under control and work on your credit score. If you are planning on renting, landlords look at that very seriously when considering a tenant.
Make sure you have a job when you get there. If you’re moving because of a job, get a relocation bonus. ASK FOR IT! You’d be surprised what you can get if you ask.
Creating a moving budget. This will show you how much money you will need to save up for all expenses including broker fees, security deposits, moving companies, possible storage, furniture and at least the first month’s rent.
Step 1: Choosing the new location
If you’re relocating because of a job or school, either for yourself or a spouse, apparently you’re skipping this step. For Thomas, he just wants to leave Iowa so he can have a new place to call home. Start by researching locations you might be interested in. Figure out what you want out of a new location and make a priority list with value scores.
Don’t get caught up in what you might do when you get there. Make a list of real priorities and things you truly value. Maybe you don’t have a car, so you want a city to be walkable. You love hiking and the outdoors, so you need to find a place with the nice weather most of the year.
Since it is more likely than not that you’ll need a job when you move, some of your top priorities should be:
* What’s my industry like in this city?
* What’s the probability that I can get a good job?
* What’s the cost of living index, and will my likely salary be able to manage it?
* Will I have to downgrade my current lifestyle because the new city won’t let my dollars stretch as far?
Compare your cost of living now to what it will be on the move along with your new salary. Thomas has been using Numbeo to compare the cost if living between Des Moines to Denver.
He figured out he will need $4,837 each month to get the same standard of living I’d get on $4,000 in Des Moines. Also, check out tax rate differences. If you have children or plan to have kids, then you need to consider schools and daycare costs in the area.
Once you have all the info you need, start scoring cities you’re interested in based on your priorities.Check out city-data websites, forums, and Reddit to get the low-down from locals. Thomas has found this pretty helpful except for those few people who don’t want any newcomers in town.
Once you have your shortlist, visit a city or two if you can. It’s probably not feasible for most people to visit every potential city, but if you can try to Air BnB it up for a few days in your top pick. You can tour some apartments and get a feel for the place. Thomas did this in Denver, and that was fantastic. It solidified the decision for him.
Step 2: Start preparing
Moving sucks, so make a plan for everything that needs to be done way ahead of time and work on it in little chunks. Pare down your life and get rid of stuff you don’t need or use. You are starting a new life so leave some of the old behinds.
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