7 Things To Consider Before Moving to a New State

Before you leave

Now you’re all ready for the big move, but there’s still a few more loose ends to tie up before you leave. A few weeks before you move, notify USPS of your change of address by going to USPS.com and choosing the date you want to begin forwarding your mail. Notify your old utility companies of your move so you won’t have to pay for an extra month of electricity. Similarly, notify your new utility companies so you won’t have to deal with having no power for the first week in your new place.

There’s a ton of important factors to consider before locating to a new state. Make sure to follow these tips in order to make your moving experience as easy and stress-free as possible. Although moving is complicated process, you’re on track to start your new adventure in a new state. Whether you’re starting a new job or you’re looking to start a new chapter in your life, moving to a new state is an exciting adventure. It can be difficult to figure out how to find the perfect place to live from hundreds of miles away and move with there all your stuff, especially if you’re moving alone. Here are some tips to eliminate as much stress as possible while making the move to a new state.

Start researching early

You should start conducting as much research as possible about your new town or city a few months in advance. If you’re moving to a new state because you landed a job, make sure to check out all of the surrounding areas to find the location that best suits you. On the other hand, if you’ve made the decision to move on your own, there’s more gray area. If possible, set aside some time to visit and explore the area you have in mind. 

Don’t be afraid to talk to the locals, ask questions, and drive around the surrounding neighborhoods to get a feel for the area. Try to get to know what kind of restaurants are in the area and check out local businesses and recreational activities. The internet is full of information — if you’re not sure where to start, try searching Yelp.

Save up

It’s no secret that moving to a different state is expensive. There are a lot of hidden costs in moving that a lot of people fail to consider. The American Moving and Storage Association estimates the average cost of an interstate household move to be $4,300. If you’re on your own, a full service moving company will cost more.

Packing supplies, the moving company, and the security deposit on your new place are costs that add up quickly. You’ll also have some decisions to make, like buying moving insurance or taking out a mortgage loan, so it’s best to have some extra money. Mortgage loans can be taken out through your local credit union — to speed up the process, search for lenders near you with a search like “mortgage loans in Louisiana.”

Determine your budget

As mentioned previously, moving costs add up fast. Although you should save up for any extra costs, it’s also important to set a budget. Your real estate agent will ask you what kind of rent or mortgage payments you’ll be able to afford on a monthly basis, so be sure to have an idea of what you’re willing to pay along with a limit that you can’t exceed. 

If you’re into organization and list-making, try using Microsoft Word or Excel to create your own budget and spending template. You’ll be able to list out everything you need and easily calculate all of your expenses. Find out how much money you’ll be able to set aside for the moving process and as well as home buying or renting. Don’t forget to include a moving company fee, including fuel charges and labels, as well as any additional insurance you choose to buy. Determine if you’ll need to pay for any extra services, like moving heavier items. 

You’ll also want to budget for the trip to your new home. If you’re driving to the new state, add in costs for fuel and maintenance fees, including oil and a general vehicle check-up. Figure out where you’ll be stopping along your moving route if the trip spans across multiple days — booking hotels in advance will help you secure a room at a lower rate. Finally, you’ll probably be eating out for every meal during the trip and immediately after moving in, so include these in your budget.

Look for your new home

After you decide exactly where you’re looking to move, look into local real estate agents to help you look for a place to live. A simple Google search specific to the area, like “luxury real estate agent in Vancouver, WA,” will help you get started. Whether you’re buying or renting, find a reliable agent who knows about the area’s housing market. They’ll be able to show you around and narrow down your search, allowing you to spend less time worrying about finding somewhere to live and more time preparing for the big move. 

If you have some more money to spend, you might want to search for a construction company. A hometown builder will work with you to design a team and set a realistic budget for the project. You can easily find a reputable company near you with a search like “trusted hometown builder in Royersford, PA.”

Find a moving company

Moving companies are expensive, so it’s important to conduct some research before spending thousands of dollars to move your stuff. To find the best moving company, browse a few different websites. Most companies offer free quotes as long as you have a rough idea of how much space you’ll need. Reading previous reviews and testimonials is necessary since you won’t want anything happening to your stuff.

If you’re not sure where to start, ask friends, family, and neighbors for recommendations. You should also check to make sure the companies you’re considering are properly licensed with the Department of Transportation.

Start packing

Once you’ve paid your security deposit and set a moving date, it’s time to start packing. It’s easy to procrastinate if you’re packing yourself, so it’s best to start as early as possible. Set aside a few days to decide what you’re going to keep and what you’ll be tossing and donating — keep in mind that, although paring down is difficult, it will pay off immensely in the long run. The cost of a long distance move is often based on the overall weight of your things, so the less you bring, the cheaper you’ll have to pay to move it all.

Craigslist and other online marketplaces are great ways to list your unwanted things and get some extra cash for the move. For clothes, drop them off at a nearby Goodwill or consider consigning them at a local consignment store. After sorting through all your belongings, calculate how many boxes you’ll need using a Packing Calculator. Don’t forget to label your boxes so you can prioritize what needs to be unpacked.