How to Know it’s the Right Time to Move

From breakups and cabin fever to new jobs and wanderlust, we all move for different reasons.

For some, deciding whether to stay put or relocate can be gut-wrenching.

It’s an easy issue to overthink, and the repercussions can be huge.

If big decisions aren’t your forte, you’re in the right place.

In this post we’ll cover several classic indicators that’ll help you assess your situation and determine whether moving makes sense.

Before reading on, check out these helpful pre-move resources:

  • Best interstate movers – The moving industry is full of shady players. With so much at stake, it’s worth hiring a top-rated long-distance mover with verified customer reviews
  • Best moving container companies – It’s simple. You load and unload, they drive, and you save big bucks
  • How much will your move cost? – Our moving cost calculator is a great resource. Just enter your move dates, origin and destination cities, and the estimated size of your move, and the magic algorithms will do the rest

1. You’ve had it with the “same old, same old”

Been there, done that.

There are tons of advantages to living, working, and raising a family in a familiar environment.

On the other hand, seeing the same scenery and faces every day can lead to boredom, depression, and feelings of wanderlust.

There’s nothing quite like a long-distance move for those who dream of new experiences and distant horizons.

Perpetual boredom and complacency might not be sufficient reasons to move, but they’re two more indicators worth taking into account.

2. You’re looking for new job opportunities

In many rural areas, job opportunities and room for professional advancement are more limited than they are in cities.

Not surprisingly, more college grads move to New York and San Francisco every year than to Ardmore, Oklahoma and Dubuque, Iowa.

Ardmore and Dubuque may be wonderful places to live, but they’re not exactly hotspots for the tech, finance, and aerospace industries.

New jobs and better professional opportunities often top the list regarding reasons for moving.

Of course, your prospects will depend on your age, skills, experience, and education, so it’s wise to be realistic.

While young singles often set out before securing new jobs, this may not be the best idea for jobseekers with families.

3. Things just aren’t working out

Despite our best efforts, sometimes things don’t work out.

This is often attributable to personal, professional, or financial factors, and sometimes a combination of all three.

When things aren’t clicking on all cylinders, it may be another indication that it’s time to reconsider the move that’s been brewing in the back of your mind.

This is especially true if you’ve been in your current home, apartment, city, or town for at least a year or two.

However, if you’re experiencing these feelings just a few months after making a move, try to resist the urge to move back home prematurely.

4. Your budget changed

Moving to a big city after college can be an epic adventure.

From art galleries and cultural events to world-class dining and robust job markets, cities like Chicago and Los Angeles have a lot going for them.

But sometimes dreams eclipse reality, and cities are generally expensive places to live.

And let’s face it, eating ramen noodles and canned tuna for dinner gets old.

In short, when your salary can’t cover your expenses and your savings account is drying up like Lake Mead, it may be time to consider moving somewhere less expensive.

5. You’re ready for a challenge

It’s easy to fall into a rut regardless of who you are, where you live, and what you do.

Routines can be rewarding, but too much monotony can make some of us feel like we’re being lazy and just plain settling.

This is especially true for self-aware folks who realize that fear and complacency are keeping them from working toward their dreams and aspirations.

Moving to a new city or state can be rewarding, fulfilling, and challenging, particularly if it’s just one element of an overall personal or professional growth plan.

On the flip side, the biggest gambles can turn out to be major flops, so don’t skimp on research, planning, and introspection before heading out.

6. You’re tired of living in the country (or city)

Most of us are either city or country people at heart.

Of course, many people can be perfectly happy in both rural and urban settings.

However, living in hectic cities surrounded by jackhammers, car alarms and traffic noise can be debilitating for introverts.

Likewise, living in the country can feel like a prison sentence for extroverts and go-getters.

Both city and country living have their pros and cons, but staying in a setting that doesn’t agree with you can have serious long-term effects on mental health.

7. Crime is on the rise

Even within cities and states, crime rates can fluctuate from year to year due to factors like demographics and economics.

And crime is increasingly becoming an issue in rural areas.

Sustained escalations don’t usually happen overnight, but they can happen surprisingly quickly in some cases.

Whether crime creeps up slowly or quickly, the ramifications can affect everything from safety and home values to job prospects and overall quality of life.

Since few things are as crucial as well-being and peace of mind, it’s worth considering crime trends when contemplating a move.

8. You want to live in a better school district

There’s no better way to give your kids a leg-up than by sending them to top-notch schools.

That said, the quality of public schools varies significantly from area to area.

Not surprisingly, the search for better schools is one of the most cited factors in family relocations.

Packing up and moving across town or to another state isn’t easy or inexpensive.

Still, when moving will give your children access to better schools, resources, and educators, it may be worth the effort and expense.

9. The long commute is wearing you out

Living in the suburbs is great, but long daily commutes in bumper-to-bumper traffic can ruin the experience.

For digital nomads and remote workers, commutes are non-issues.

However, working from home isn’t feasible for everybody.

For traditional workers, moving closer to the office is a great way to relieve stress, save tons of money on gas, and free up more time for hobbies, family, and personal development. 

Don’t forget to negotiate an adequate relocation package when moving for work.

10. Your family needs you elsewhere

Moving is usually a personal decision, but it’s often out of our control.

This is often the case when sick siblings or aging parents need more help than we can provide from afar.

In addition, a spouse’s new job, promotion, or transfer can make uprooting the whole family unavoidable.

Unplanned and unwanted relocations can put undue stress on each family member when this happens.

Whatever the case, staying positive and setting reasonable expectations will go a long way toward making the move process easier.

And remember, moves aren’t necessarily permanent.

Here’s how to prepare for a temporary move.

11. You want to meet new people

Living in a rural town with 200 residents can seriously minimize the likelihood of finding a significant other.

Worse yet, in many areas, large portions of the population may be made up of retirees and school-age kids, making finding a mate even more depressing.

Dating isn’t (or shouldn’t be) a big issue for established families, but it can have a huge impact on relatively young singles’ quality of life.

Frequently asked questions (faqs)

Am I too old to move?

There’s no hard-and-fast answer to this commonly asked question. Older folks handle the stresses associated with moving better than their younger counterparts in many respects.

Why do most people move?

Most local and interstate moves result from family issues, new jobs, and finances.

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