We've walked you through a lot of the logistics of a move before, as well as how to settle down in a new city once you're there, so I won't retread too much into that territory again. However, after (mostly) finishing up the hell of a move from Colorado to Washington with about three weeks of preparation, I picked up a few tips along the way for dealing with both logistical oddities as well as the emotional stress that comes along with a move.
If you've gotten a job in a specific city, then you've already figured out the "where." But if you're moving just because it's time to leave your current city, as I was, you have a big decision to make. Deciding where to move depends on a ton of different factors. For me, it boiled down to one place being logistically easier because I had a place to stay and was already heading there for a wedding.
Even still, cities are big, and finding the right neighborhood makes or breaks your new city experience for the first year. We've shown you how to research a city from your couch before, and it's well worth the couple hours of your time to figure out exactly where you want to move. Obvious factors like cost of living, job availability, and the rental market are good to consider. Beyond that, it's also worth looking around neighborhoods with something like Yelp or Google Street View so you have a good idea of what each neighborhood is like before you decide where you want to end up.P
As for the when, that's when things start getting a little complicated. The day and month really do matter when picking a good time to move, and if you have the luxury of choice you can save a little money.P
For the most part, it's best to move any time other than summer if you can. Everyone wants to move during the summer. That means apartments are harder to find, moving companies can charge more, and even moving truck rental companies can get more money out of you. If you move between October and May, you'll have less competition for apartments and your move will be cheaper if you're renting a truck or using a moving company.
When you're moving locally it's easy to just rent a truck, grab some friends, and have everyone move all your belongings to a new place in an afternoon. That's not really the case with cross country move. Instead, I had to make a very decisive choice: sell everything I own or pay for it to get transported.P
Each has their own set of benefits. If you sell everything, you can move to a new city with just an airplane ticket, but you'll arrive with just the essential stuff. You also have to go through the trouble of actually selling all your stuff, which is a liberating experience, but still a hassle. When you arrive and get a new apartment, you'll just start anew and shop for new stuff. It's a worthwhile binge with a lot of benefits if you don't feel like lugging your belonging across the country.P
Likewise, you can also rent a truck, car, or van, and bring everything with you. This obviously saves the hassle of selling your stuff, but it means you have to pay a lot of money to get your belongings from A to B.P
I did something in between. I threw a going away garage sale party before I left where I sold off all of my books, a large chunk of vinyl, random little things, and every obnoxiously heavy space-consuming object I owned. What was left was still too much for a car, but it fit into a smaller moving truck where the cost of renting the truck and gas was about equal to the amount I'd pay in Seattle to buy everything new. So, I decided on the truck so I didn't have to spend my last few days in Colorado frantically selling things on Craigslist only to spend my first few weeks in