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How to Research Your New Home’s Location

by Levi Sims

By in Real Estate Blog with 0 Comments

Guest Post by Levi Sims of

A small yellow bus with luggage on top to show that someone is moving locations. This is for an article about how to research your new home's location

Moving is often a big and overwhelming experience. When you are preparing to move to a new location, even another part of the same neighborhood, you will want to make sure you know what you are getting into and have a pretty good sense of where you are preparing to land. When you are moving to a new state it can amplify the feelings and potential stress of moving. Luckily for you, this helpful guide will share tips, tricks, and advice on how to research your new home’s location, no matter which state it will be in!

All About Location

“Location, location, location!” You have probably heard that famous real estate maxim before, but have you actually considered all the parts of what it means? The location of your new home is not just a point on a map, but a dynamic web of relevant local features.

The internet is an extremely handy tool for this type of research. Look up your new area online and you will be able to learn a heck of a lot about it. As you zoom in on Google Maps, take a look to find out where there are features that are important to you. How close is your nearest coffee shop, for example? Can you walk to a grocery store, or will you need to drive? What about public transportation? All of these features will add up to shaping your experience in your new home.

Here is a starting list of things you can look for in your new neighborhood, town, city, and state:

  • Health: Closest pharmacy, doctor’s offices, and hospitals.
  • Travel: Distance or proximity to the nearest airport.
  • Dining: What types of restaurants, bars, cafes, and coffee shops are nearby.
  • Nature: Access to natural spaces, such as parks, lakes, rivers, the beach, and the forest.
  • Local Transportation: Proximity to train stations, bus stops, metro stops, and freeways.
  • Education: How close are the nearest schools, from pre-Kindergarten all the way up through college.
  • Climate: What kind of weather does your state get regularly? Is the climate warm or cold, rainy or dry? How might this impact what you do in your new state?

How to Research Cost of Living

One of the most significant factors to consider as you search for your new home or prepare to settle into your new state- is the cost of living that will greet you once you arrive. There are many different factors that add up to create your cost of living. While you may find a home that seems affordable on its own, this can sometimes fail to take into account other factors that can amplify or soften your overall costs.

Things like monthly utility bills, taxes, homeowner’s insurance, local mortgage rates, and homeowner’s association fees can all combine to make your cost of living more than expected. But if you research in advance, you will have a better sense of how to prepare your budget, and how to make sure that your intended destination actually provides a lifestyle that you can afford. Use an online cost of living comparison tool to help get a clearer sense of how your new state matches up.

Quality of Life

Whether you are moving as a single young professional or packing up the whole family home to move with your kids (or anywhere in between), you will want to get a sense of the quality of life in the new state where you will live.

Job Prospects

If part of the purpose of moving is to seek out new job prospects, then it will be well worth your while to look for job opportunities before you go. Utilize the internet for this purpose as well. Online job search boards can be a great ally to help you land the dream position. Read up on the industries and job market ups and downs specific to your new state. This will give you a better sense of where you can expect to position yourself within the job market available. 

Think about your current skills and abilities. How much do you see yourself thriving within the most competitive industries in your new state? Think strategically about how to find a new job that fits you and that can allow you to support your financial lifestyle.

How to Research Education Options

If you are moving with kids, or perhaps interested in going back to school yourself, you will definitely want to have a good sense of what kinds of education options will be available to you in your new home state. We have mentioned above that proximity to schools at all levels of education is important. But the quality of these schools is also key.

Do some research to discover the top-rated schools in your new state. Get to know the areas in which these new schools thrive. Are there schools that emphasize an excellent STEM program for your science and math-minded child? What about arts education, or bilingual schools? Keep this research in mind as you seek out the perfect location for your new home.

Researching Local Culture & Activities

Of course, life is not only about work and school. While the financial and geographic considerations may be the most important for you to consider, it is still worthwhile to get to know the local culture of your new state. What kinds of attractions does your state offer?

If you are an outdoorsy type, look into nearby adventurous activities, such as mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, or surfing. If you prefer some high culture, check out the local museums available in your city or nearby towns. Amusement parks, zoos, aquariums, and other kid-friendly activities will be important to keep in mind if you have young kids in particular. If you have specific hobbies or activities that you like, this is a great way to get involved with the new community.

Looking into the nightlife, local festivals, concert halls, performance venues, and sports stadiums can all give you a much richer experience of the place you will live. And the more you can picture yourself living in that new state, the more easily and comfortably you will settle in once you do eventually arrive there.

Final Thoughts

When researching your new state, think about the key information that will help you succeed in your new home region. What kinds of things are important to your day-to-day quality of life? Look into the ease of transportation, the weather, the school system, and job prospects.

Then balance these factors against your intended budget. This process will help you to prepare for your new location. Further, it will help you to narrow down your options to places that fit within your list of criteria. That way, starting afresh in a brand-new state will be exciting and easy. You can start checking out homes in Lewis County here! Happy searching!

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