Having decided to move, it’s time to find a place where you can settle in. In the first step of your decision-making process, you must have a clear picture of all the different available options. If you don’t know what exactly you need for yourself when moving, it will be overwhelming and extremely stressful to make the best possible choice. But part of the stress can be alleviated by carefully considering all your options and picking the perfect location for you and your family.
This article will help you make the process easier and narrow down your search. We’ve outlined some tips on how to decide where to live and factors to consider when moving to a new place.
Evaluate Your Needs
Whether you’re downsizing, upsizing, or just relocating to a new area, it’s important to evaluate your needs and find the right home for you. Here are a number of factors to consider which can significantly impact your quality of life in a new city:
1. Cost of Living
The cost of living is the amount of money you need to spend on necessities like housing, food, and transportation. It can vary widely from one place to another, and it’s important to make sure you can afford the lifestyle you want in your new location. Here are some tips for evaluating the cost of living in a potential new location:
Decide whether you need to buy or rent. Weigh your options and figure out what’s best for your budget before making a decision. For some people, buying a home is the best option because it allows them to build equity and invest in their future. However, renting can also be a good option, especially if you’re not ready to commit to a long-term mortgage. If you decide to rent, how much can you afford to spend on rent each month?
Look at the cost of necessities. How much do food and transportation cost? This will give you a good idea of what your basic costs will be in your new location.
Consider your current income. If you’re relocating for a better job, you may be able to afford a higher cost of living. But if you’re moving to a more expensive area without a raise, you’ll need to make sure your income can cover the extra costs.
2. Job and Business Opportunities
If you are looking for a stable job, it is important to research the job market in potential locations. Are there plenty of job opportunities in your field? Will you be able to find a job that pays well? If you are looking to start your own business, find out what kind of support and resources are available in the area.
3. Proximity to Work and Other Important Places
If you are considering a move to a new city, it’s important to think about your daily routine and how long it will take you to get to work, the grocery store, the city center, and other important places. For example, if you have a long commute, you may want to consider moving closer to your workplace. Alternatively, if you have young children, you may want to choose a neighborhood with good schools.
4. Safety and Security
One important factor that is often overlooked is safety. After all, you want to choose a place where you feel comfortable and secure. So how can you tell if a neighborhood is safe? One way to get an idea is to research the crime rates. You can also talk to locals and get their opinion on the area. Pay attention to your gut feeling when you visit potential neighborhoods. If you don’t feel safe, it’s probably not the right place for you.
Another factor to keep in mind is the risk of natural disasters. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, some parts of the country are more prone to floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes than others. If you choose to live in an area that is at high risk for one or more of these disasters, it’s important to have a plan in place in case of an emergency. Make sure you know the evacuation routes and have a kit stocked with supplies in case you need to leave quickly. It’s also a good idea to purchase homeowners insurance that covers damage from natural disasters.
5. Weather Conditions
The weather can have a big impact on your quality of life, so you’ll want to make sure you’re moving to a city with the best weather in the US. Different parts of the country have different benefits and drawbacks when it comes to climate. Here are some tips on how to determine the best city for weather:
- Take a look at the average temperatures in the area you’re considering moving to.
- Pay attention to the amount of precipitation in the area.
- Be prepared for possible dust storms and wildfires.
- Keep an eye on natural disasters that could affect the area. Be aware of that risk and take steps to protect yourself.
6. Schools and Universities
A good school system can be important for your children’s future, as well as your own peace of mind. Different schools have different strengths and weaknesses, so it’s important to do your research before making a decision. There are a few things you can do to research the quality of education in an area. You can talk to people who live there and ask about their experience with the schools. You can look up test scores for schools in the area. You can also look into the types of programs and resources that are available in the area.
7. Recreational Opportunities Nearby
Take the time to assess your recreational needs so you can ensure that you’ll be happy with your new location. If you enjoy hiking, biking, swimming, or any other outdoor activity, it’s important to choose a location that offers easy access to these activities. Likewise, if you’re looking for nightlife and entertainment options, it’s important to choose a neighborhood that offers a variety of bars, restaurants, and other attractions.
8. Public Transportation Options
Is there a bus stop or train station near your potential home? How often do they run? If you rely on public transportation, it’s important to make sure that there are stops nearby your home and that the schedule is reliable. Another consideration is the cost of fares. In some cities, public transportation is free or very affordable, while in others it can be quite expensive.
9. Personal Relationships
If you have close extended family or friends who live nearby, then you’ll probably want to stay close to them. But if you don’t have many ties to the area, then you may be more open to moving elsewhere.
Every city has its own unique culture, and it’s important to make sure that the culture is a good fit for you. How traditional or modern is the city? What kind of activities does it offer? Is the nightlife bustling or more low-key? How diverse is the population? These are all important factors to consider when deciding if a city is a right fit for you.
11. Community and neighborhood
Do you want to be in a bustling city or a more relaxed suburban area? Do you want to live close to family and friends or start fresh in a new community? Once you’ve decided on the general area, it’s time to start looking at specific types of neighborhoods. Do you want a close-knit neighborhood where everyone knows each other, or are you more independent and prefer your own space? There are pros and cons to both types of communities, so it’s important to know what you’re looking for before you start your search.
Once you’ve decided on the type of community you’re looking for, it’s time to start thinking about the specific amenities that are important to you. Make a list of the must-haves and nice-to-haves for your ideal neighborhood.
Visit the Place in Person
This will give you a better sense of what the neighborhood is like and whether or not it’s truly somewhere you could see yourself living long-term. If possible, try to visit each place at different times of the day so that you can get a feel for the area at different times of day and night.
Trust Your Gut Instinct
Try to imagine yourself living in different places, and pay attention to how you feel. Does a certain location give you a sense of peace and happiness? Or does it make you feel anxious or uncomfortable? Paying attention to your inner voice will help you tune into your intuition and make the best decision for you.
Another important factor to consider is the energy of a potential home. Everyone has their own unique energy field, and it’s important to surround yourself with positive energy. If you’re feeling negative energy at home, it’s best to move on and find somewhere that feels more supportive. Your goal is to ensure that you’ll be moving into a space that feels good for you on all levels – physically, emotionally, and energetically.
Ask Around for Opinions
Talk to friends, family, and co-workers about their experiences with different neighborhoods, cities, and states. Find out what they like and don’t like about where they live. This can be invaluable information when you’re trying to make a decision about where to put down roots. Hearing first-hand accounts of other people’s experiences can help you narrow down your options and make the best choice for yourself and your family.
Consult a Real Estate Agent
Real estate agents are experts in the field and typically have a wealth of knowledge about different neighborhoods. They can help you learn how to decide where to live and narrow down your options. They can provide insights about safety, schools, and even the best places to eat. In addition, they usually have access to listings that are not yet on the market. This means that they can help you find your dream home before anyone else even knows it is for sale.
While there are many factors to consider when moving to a new place, hopefully, our tips have given you a good starting point for your decision. If you’re still unsure or need help narrowing down your options, reach out to our consultants at Homes by Ardor. We would be happy to assist you in finding the perfect place to call home.
Kris Reid is the CEO of Ardor SEO, a company that helps real estate professionals get more leads and customers to predictably grow their business.
Over the years, Kris acquired extensive knowledge of SEO and its practical applications in various industries, with the main focus on real estate.
In 2021 Ardor launched the Icons of Real Estate Podcast to share proven strategies from the top producing icon agents with the real estate community.
After obtaining the real estate license in 2022, Kris joined eXp Realty and launched Homes by Ardor, the platform that was built to be the fastest way to buy or sell a house. Homes by Ardor also provides leads for its partner companies and realtors.