Relocating for work is perhaps one of the most unnerving parts of looking/moving for a new job! In the last 5 years, I have worked in 5 cities (5 states and 2 countries). Another fun fact – I have never lived in the same city for more than 3 years in my entire life span. Clearly, the topic of relocation for work is close to my heart. Perhaps that’s the reason why people also call me The Relo Pro! I am kidding.. no one calls me that .. yet! In this blog post, I’ll be sharing 5 big lessons that I have learned from my multiple experiences of relocating for work. If you’re considering a new job in a new city, this article is for you!
1. Cost of Living Comparison
The thumb rule for me is that you need to make adjustments in the salary such that you can uplift or atleast, maintain your current standard of living in the new city that you’re moving to. There are various online tools that can effectively calculate the salary adjustments needed and also perform a cost of living comparison of groceries, housing, utilities, transportation, and healthcare between any two cities. Additionally, many companies offer a relocation bonus, which can either be a lump-sum amount or relocation services and you’re free to choose whatever suits you the best. Personally, I am big fan of convenience, so, I always choose hassle-free relcocation services over the lump-sum bonus. Here’s a Relo Pro Tip -Never rely upon the results from a single source/tool for salary conversion. Average out the results from multiple sources and level your expectations accoringly.
2. Find a Home
Finding home in a new city can get pretty overwhelming and exhausting in no time. When you’re new to a city, most of the times you don’t know a lot about the neighborhoods, the people, and the options for your daily commute. You can either take the approach of cherry picking your roommate, neighborhood, house layout, window views, utilities, etc. or choose to act fast by prioritizing your requirements and being ready to make some adjustments and compromises, when needed. I have followed both of these approaches, but, I lean more towards the latter. My prioritization order is as follows – (1) roommate, if applicable, (2) location/neighborhood, (3) daily commute, (4) house layout, (5) rent, followed by rest of the stuff. Here’s a Relo Pro Tip – Once you’ve narrowed down on a location, you and your roomate can simply walk on the streets in your desired neighborhood and find real-time offers in the nearby vicinity.
3. Find your tribe
Once you’re settled in your new job and the new city, it’s time to find your tribe – your kind of people! You can always start by making work friends and setting up lunch or coffee chats with them. You can also invite your neighbors over for a house warming party and use that time to make some strong connections over drinks and food. However, if you want to pursue some specific interests such as music, art, technology, or blogging, then I highly suggest using meetups.com or facebook events and filtering the events/meetups by your interest.Here’s a Relo Pro Tip – You’ll quickly find out that it’s way easier to make friend with people who have shared interests rather than making friends with a random stranger, which, by the way, is an art in itself.
4. Rethink your Lifestyle
Relocation is a great opportunity to start new things. If you’ve ever dreamt of a particular decor in your bedroom, setting up a new theme in your living room or developing healthier food habits then now is the time. I can speak from experience that as you’re making a fresh start in a new city, you tend to face least resistance in adopting new habits. Stock your fridge with healthy food, set up brand new furniture in your living room, hang inspiring and motivational paitings on your walls and buy new clothes that compliment your personality. Here’s a Relo Pro Tip – Relocation is a fresh start to your life and you can use it to your advantage. Just like you make new year resolutions, make some resolutions when you relocate to a new city and try to see them through!
5. Follow the minimalistic approach
Before relocating to a new city, get rid of that worn off couch, the saggy bean bag, or the TV that you haven’t touched in ages. Don’t pack things that you don’t need. You can either sell them or donate them. If you have mistakenly packed things that you don’t need, then don’t unpack them upon relocating. And if you have mistakenly unpacked things that you don’t need, then again, sell them or donate them. Here’s a Relo Pro Tip – If you get a chance to relocate, don’t stuff up your new bedroom, living room, closet, and kitchen with old and unnecessary items. Remember, less is more.
So those are the 5 big lessons from the the Relo Pro! I would love to hear about your relocation experiences and tips in the comments below!
Wish you a happy relocation!