In today’s increasingly connected world, relocating for a brand new job or temporary assignment is a fairly common occurrence. Yet, no matter how many times you move, it never gets easier. The process requires you to adjust to a new environment, a new job, and a new network of coworkers and friends—all at the same time.
While moving can be daunting and downright difficult, the more prepared you are, the easier your transition will be. Consider these tips to help streamline your relocation process.
1) Stay Organized
Managing logistics is often the most time-consuming aspect of a move. From selling your current home or apartment, to finding a new one, taking care of business is easier said than done.
Even if you’re not a note taker, a planner or notebook is an invaluable tool for an upcoming move. During these house-hunting days, use it to track phone calls, take notes on prospective houses, and gather phone numbers for the connections you’ll make—from realtors and rental agents to moving teams and handymen.
2) Know Your Options
Depending on your industry, many companies offer a variety of relocation packages—and most are flexible when it comes to making the big move. Unfamiliar with your company’s policies?
Ask about the following:
Location Scouting – Finding new housing is a big part of a job relocation, especially if you’re unfamiliar with your new city. Ask your employer if they cover your expenses to visit a prospective location to shop around. Even if you don’t find the perfect residence, these reconnaissance trips provide you with a feel for the new area.
Temporary Housing – Staying in short-term corporate housing is a great way to adjust to new surroundings. Typically, these extended stays run about three months—just enough time for you to get comfortable. Ask if your employer works with short-term housing experts to facilitate your relocation.
3) Pack it Up
Relocating is a great time to reduce and simplify. While packing is an inherent headache, with the right mindset, it can also be therapeutic. Decide what’s worth taking, and donate the rest. And be sure to pack the essentials last.
When you’ve finished, box everything up and label accordingly. Unpacking belongings can often be a long process—so you’ll appreciate the easy access to your important items. If you’re living in temporary housing, consider the option of storage units. But if you’ve already found your long-term residency, research your moving options.
4) Familiarize Yourself
Whether you’re moving across country or across town, the first couple weeks in new area can be overwhelming. Expect a couple wrong turns as you navigate your way around town.
The best way to familiarize yourself with a new location? Just ask! If you’re in a big city, chances are you know at least one or two people that live or have lived in the area. Invite them to lunch or email them to pick their brain. Even if you move blindly, you can always ask your neighbors, barista, or a local bartender for the best spots in your new ‘hood.
Once you gather your bearings, the other half of the moving equation is finding activities to fill your time. One of the easiest ways to do this is by engaging with new co-workers. Not only is this an easy way to adjust to a new city, it’s a great way to ease into a new job.
While interfacing with co-workers from time to time outside of work is certainly positive, it also helps to have a life outside of work. If you don’t already have friends—or friends of friends—to interact with, Meetup.com is a great way to find groups of people that share similar hobbies.
Above all, remember not to stress out. No matter how overwhelming, relocating is an exciting next step in your life.