Seven Tips to Share After Moving Across The Country

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Moving across the cross country can not only be fraught with anxiety, but can also be extremely difficult to manage from a logistical standpoint. By the time you finally get to the new destination that you will be calling home, you can be in such a state of tension and end up making basic mistakes you would normally never make. Thankfully, the task of moving to a new state thousands of miles away doesn’t have to be as difficult and stress inducing as it is for many people. Let me share with you the lessons I learned after recently conducting my own cross country move all the way from Colorado to Washington.

My Story And How It Can Help You

The preparation for my big move took the best part of a month to get completed. Having never undertaken such a big personal move before, I was met with surprises and had to adapt in order to deal with the realities of the big task, which was a bigger and harder task than I imagined it would be. Fortunately, after successfully completing my long distance move I feel that I learned a lot from the experience and am able to share my tips for dealing with both the practical logistics and the emotional aspects involved. Hopefully these will prove helpful to you and make it all go a little more smoothly!

It Can Be Hard To Know Where To Move To!

which way should i move across country?If you find yourself in the position that I found myself in, which is to say that I positively decided it was time for me to move to a different city, rather than having to move to a particular city for a job I’d applied for or been assigned to, then you’ll quickly discover just how many options you have. Normally options are a good thing, however sometimes too much of a good thing can be overwhelming.

Firstly, you have to decide which city to move to and then you have to narrow it down to specific neighborhoods where you’d be happy to live. Fortunately, it’s now possible to find out almost everything you need to know about a place just by using Google for a couple hours on your laptop or tablet. This allows you to find out information about the job market, housing costs, entertainment, the general culture of the city and a bunch of other useful things which are helpful to know about a place.

Once you’ve chosen a city be sure to use a site like Yelp to get a good of what the area is like street by street. After you’ve settled on a neighborhood within a city that you want to move to it’s then time to set a date on the move. If you have any flexibility in your schedule, then you should move at a time other than the summer months. Generally speaking, a higher percentage of people want to move in the summer which forces the price up on everything moving-related. Pick another time of the year and you can save a fair amount. Also getting multiple moving quotes from a reputable website online can save you the hassle of contacting companies one by one.

You’ll Need To Deal With All Your Stuff

sell-stuff-to-move-easier-cross-countryOver the years you end up accumulating tons of stuff, a lot of which you never use. When moving across the country you basically have to decide whether you want to transport stuff or sell it (or give it away) before leaving. A good strategy is to do a bit of both. Give yourself a clear weekend to go through all the stuff you currently have and decide what’s to be shipped and what’s to be sold. Once you’ve decided what you’re going to sell, two great places to start selling it off quickly are Craigslist and eBay. Selling things can be a little bit of a hassle, but a huge bonus is you generally raise more money than you would expect to. This can give you a nice amount of cash to pay for renting a truck and the gas you’ll need to transport it all cross-country.

Sorting Out A Rental From Afar Is Tricky

This part surprised me as I genuinely thought that in today’s internet world it would be easy to rent an apartment in Washington from the comfort of my sofa in Colorado. As it turned out it was actually quite tricky. A problematic aspect is the whole deal with putting down a deposit on a place which you haven’t yet seen in person. Obviously, nearby you would always want to see an apartment first before you put down any money. However, with the distance involved this can be hard to get landlords to agree to. In the end I found a workaround which involved staying at a friend’s house for a few days to check apartments and neighborhoods out until I felt comfortable putting down a deposit. If you don’t have friends or family to stay with, then consider taking a hotel or Airbnb for a few days.

Dealing With Appointments Can Be Crazy At First

Moving to a completely new places is like living in a whirlwind for the first few days when you get there. You need to meet with landlords, register with a doctor, dentist, meet new friends, workmates and employers. This all happens at breakneck speed and it can be easy to miss an important engagement. To avoid this happening, make sure you get a good calendar app to help you manage your schedule and be able to easily slot in new appointments as and when they appear.

Don’t Trust Your Memory – Make A To-Do-List!

To do moving listWith so much going on it can be easy to lose sight of what’s important and forget to get vital tasks done. Remove this possibility by making a to-do-list every day to keep you on track. Everyday in the build-up to moving cross-country right up until it was completed successfully I made a new to-do-list every morning and stuck to it. You can use an App such as Wunderlist if you like keeping things digital. I relied on using a small piece of paper with the key tasks written down in order and always kept it in my pocket.

I Found It Incredibly Stressful To Move Cross-Country

Sometimes it’s better to acknowledge a problem rather than pretend it isn’t there. Moving long distance caused me a lot of anxiety and I didn’t always find it easy to cope with. A couple of times I had a minor breakdown where I needed to remove myself from the stressful situation and take some time to breath. One of these was when I was told that some of my stuff, which I’d chosen to ship, was going to be delayed in getting there by two days. That sucked and made an already difficult day even more trying. I learned to cope with the stress by listening to some meditation apps on my phone and making sure I got plenty of sleep. I tell you this not to discourage you from moving. Rather I just want you to know that moving can be stressful and you should be prepared to deal with it.

Get On The Ground To Really Know The Place

A key thing I learned was that getting my feet on the ground and walking around the area got me acquainted with the neighborhood I’d moved into far better than travelling by car ever would have done. You really gain a much better feel for an area when you go through it on foot compared with passing by it in a car. Even if you’re going to rely on your car most of the time, it’s still a good idea to go for a good walk in the area to get to know the area better.

Summing Up

It can be hard moving cross-country. However, it has been so worthwhile for me and I don’t regret it all. Hopefully the lessons I’ve learned will help you cope better with moving and make it a better, less-stressful experience. Good luck!

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17 Comments

  • Adeline Ee

    Thanks for sharing your story and tips on moving more seamlessly, i personally hate moving and having a system and structure helps!

  • Christine

    Moving is always stressful, and its hard enough to pack up, we have to settle down in our new place and hope no harm comes to our belongings as well..thanks for sharing these tips!

  • Sheila Chingwa

    Interesting bit of information to consider when it comes to moving. Getting rid of things that are not important is a good thing for moving and using the information here gave me the information I need.

  • Shakandra Washington

    Making a list is a great idea. Keeping organized
    when you’re moving that far is key.

  • Jhei

    Not making a “to-do” list is the most common issue most of the people I help move encounters. They keep on telling me that the things they need done are all in their heads. I would often nag them about stuff they may forget but they wouldn’t listen or forget. Oh well, as long as get pizza for helping them out!

  • Barbara Austin

    Going from the east coast to the west coast was so intimidating.
    But the advice here is good. It’s really helpful to walk around and
    get to know the lay of the land in a new place. It makes if feel less
    strange and helps to start your roots.

  • Toni Fontello

    There’s alot to think about and plan before moving, and even more so after the move. Thanks for the tips to keep in mind when starting a new life in a new location. There’s a lot to do before getting back to a normal, routine life after moving.

  • RAVI BISHT

    Moving to a new place is really difficult without proper planning.Selling the unwanted stuffs which are no longer of use is the best way to get rid of it and helps in cutting down your transportation charges.In order to keep all this in memory a to do list should be the inevitable part of the process which involves lot of steps.

  • Dave Jones

    Do you do any short distance moves?
    And do you insure the contents?

  • Yosleidis Fleitas

    I will add something that has worked for me, don’t be picky at first. I have move many many times, I always move first to houses I may not like much but once I’m in the area I get to find out better options.

  • Isabel

    I’d say that list is very important for you do tend to forget things and also, you remember stuff while doing something. Hence, it is a good idea to keep your tiny notebook where you can jot down things. Keep an inventory list of your stuff with purchase costs and replacement values in case they get damaged while in transit. It will be handy for insurance purposes.

  • Daniel Ong

    Great sharing tips and personal experience pertaining to moving abroad out of comfort zone! I strongly believe that this is a dare to try experience especially if you are totally migrating! Remember to really do your homework well and have to always be positive in the changes that is necessary for a fresh start!

  • Samantha

    Finally, a to-do list of all the things to prepare and pay attention to prior to the big move. THanks!

  • jen

    i’ve seen my friend experienced this kind of stress while preparing to move. and to find a rental apartment is even harder, if you have friends or acquaintances in place you’re moving in to it’d be nice if you can ask their help to check the place for you.

  • Michael

    I find tossing stuff is the hardest part of moving. It could be very difficult to decide whether to toss or to keep some stuff.

  • Amy

    Yes, making a to-do list is very very helpful! It helps you to make sure that there is nothing missed.

  • sahid abdurrahman

    thank you for sharing your experience. it is always difficult when you must move from your home right now to your next home, even its not cross country. so, this article is very useful to someone who wants moving to somewhere and make the stuff easier.

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