So you’re thinking about moving and don’t know where to start? There are many steps involved in the process and many details to keep track of. Depending on your reasoning, moving can be stressful. If your reason is retirement, you want to make sure you choose the right location and house so you’re happy and comfortable in your home. If you have a dream location in mind, your search might be easier than most. If not, make sure to do your research into different areas and think long-term about accessibility of the houses you’re looking at.
Another common reason for a move is to live in a better climate and experience something new. This type of change can be great for a lot of people, but do keep in mind that no matter where you live, there will always be an adjustment period. Moving away from friends and family is less stressful today with the technology we have to stay in touch, but it’s still not the same as spending time in person with each other. As you get involved in your new community, it’s important to stay in touch with friends and family from back home.
If you’re moving because of a job change, there are a few things you should keep in mind before the move. First, consider the cost of living compared to your new salary. The difference in prices by location can be quite a shock in certain areas. The same size home you live in now could cost twice as much in a different location, and everyday items can be much more expensive.
Prepare Your Finances
Perhaps the most important part of a move is the financial burden. You might have the perfect idea in your head about where you want to live and what kind of house you’d like to live in, but if the costs don’t line up with your budget, you’ll either be unable to move, or be in house debt longer than you expected. The last thing you want to do is settle or reach above your means, as that can end up being a costly mistake in the long run.
Look into how much money you’ll be spending per month on your new mortgage if you were to follow through with the purchase. If you don’t have a lot of money on hand after the down payment, you might consider taking out a small loan to cover moving costs, especially if you’re traveling a long distance. It’s important to know the minimum credit score for a personal loan, as that’ll affect the amount of interest you’ll pay, and your ability to have a reasonable interest rate on your mortgage payments. If moving isn’t time sensitive, it may be best to spend the time to increase your credit score by making regular credit card payments on time. The difference in credit scores could save you thousands of dollars over the course of your mortgage if you qualify for a lower interest rate.
Timing is also an important consideration when selling your current house. The market could be a great time to sell, but the value of your home could also happen to be less than what you bought it for. If you absolutely have to move during a certain time frame, you may have to take the loss, but if you can choose a timeframe that allows you to at least break even on your home, it would be worth the wait.
If your plan is to rent an apartment instead, your financial situation will be much less complicated. You’ll likely still have moving expenses, but you can make the move without having to shell out a large down payment on a house. If all of your utilities are included in the rent, you can easily include this number in your overall budget.
Most people need to utilize a truck rental to move all of their belongings, especially with a family. Renting one yourself is an option, but you can also hire a moving company to handle everything for you. If you’re older or have physical issues, this is well worth it, and it’ll save you time and effort. There are also services that can ship vehicles. If your move is cross country, you probably don’t want to add thousands of miles to your vehicle, so this is a great way around that problem.
Choosing a Location
As previously mentioned, the reason for a move can vary from a job, retirement, climate, and more. Keep in mind your long-term and short-term goals, and make sure the move will not hinder your future plans. When scouting an area to live in, one of the things you can do is explore the area using Google Maps and Street View specifically. Keep in mind that the environment could be a few years old, so what you see may not be exactly as it is today. Even so, this is a great way to gauge what the area is like and what kinds of things there are to do.
partnered post • cc-licensed image by Thad Zajdowicz