Where Should I Live?
The Guide to Finding the Best Place To Live
People relocate for several reasons – they look for a more affordable place, they want a change in their lives, or they want to live in a smaller city. With the rising trend of remote working, many employers also prefer to relocate to cheaper places and enjoy the perks.
But what to do when you’re suddenly faced with the prospect of looking for a new place to live? How are you going to know if your dream city is the right place for you? How can you make a choice when there are many options out there.
In this article, we’re going to help you to figure out how you can choose a place to live and start your new life.
How To Choose Your Next Place To Live
The first step in locating the ideal place is determining your budget. It’s crucial to consider how much house you can buy in one community vs another, as well as the property taxes. Find out what the current mortgage rates are and which mortgage options are available to you. You’ll be better prepared to buy once you’ve set your monthly payment and expected escrow.
You must also consider your cost of living, which refers to how much money you spend on essential living expenditures such as groceries, entertainment, gym membership, dining out, and so on, in addition to the price of a property. The cost of living is a big factor in deciding how much house you can afford and where you want to reside.
Real Estate Value
Current home pricing and short-term home price trends, the amount of time for-sale homes sit on the market, whether and by how much homes sell above or below the asking price, and likely long-term value trends are all factors to consider.
Even if you have no immediate plans to purchase a home, the cost of real estate is crucial. You’ll still need to budget for rent on a monthly basis. Before moving (or even choosing to relocate), thoroughly studying current rent costs ensures you’ll discover an affordable property or avoid moving to a new area you can’t afford.
If you’re thinking about relocating, there are probably multiple areas in the world where you could live with a higher quality of life than where you are now. By setting your budget you’ve already established realistic boundaries. So, how do you choose the best location that suits your lifestyle?
- Do you like the hustle and bustle of a huge city or the quiet of nature?
- Do you want a place that offers great outdoor activities?
- Do you want to be close to a grocery store, shopping center, or coffee shop?
- Do you want to be able to surf in the mornings or walk in the evenings?
You can extend this list by adding points that are essential to you. Just make sure you’re asking the right questions and know what matters most.
Are you a big city person or do you prefer small towns? Are you comfortable with both? You need to answer the “Where should I live” question depending on your preferences. Still note that your needs might change with age so make your decision considering long-term.
If you have the good fortune of being able to pick where you live, the climate is a major factor to consider because it will surely affect your energy expenditures, access to outdoor activities, and, most significantly, your mood. Do you prefer chilly temperatures with six months of winter and sweaters, or do you prefer warm weather all year? Look up the average monthly temperature in your desired city to see if you’ll be able to live there.
Consider elevation as well. Are you relocating to a mountain city? Although the sight is breathtaking, it may take some time to adjust to breathing at that altitude, and you may never adjust (as many people do). If your preferred location is below sea level flooding can be an issue too. This is why it’s important to check if it’s a flood risk area.
Don’t forget to consider the type of house you want to reside in while deciding on a city. The easiest way to assess this is to check at several real estate websites to see what’s available – whether it’s mostly single-family houses, apartments, or a city full of condos. You may also look for a city’s most popular neighborhood to get a decent idea of what kind of property is in demand in the area.
Look for crime statistics in any city, town, or neighborhood you’re interested in using municipal or state information. However, just because a place is secure now doesn’t mean it will be safe tomorrow. The neighborhood’s long-term stability might be a determining factor in how safe your surroundings are.
If you have children or plan to have one in the future, you’d better look into schooling options in your desired location. Are there enough public schools? Do you want your children to go to international schools? If yes, have you checked the tuition fees? If you have a location on your mind, make sure to check the schools before proceeding with your decision.
Proximity to Your Family
Having the support of friends and family nearby can often make more sense during times of difficulty than living thousands of miles away. If spending time with family and close friends is important to you, you may want to reconsider your decision to relocate.
Make sure the neighborhoods or suburbs you’re considering offer reliable public transportation. Also, check if your dream city is walkable. The ability to walk from your front door to restaurants, pubs, and parks in minutes is a very desirable feature.
If you’re thinking about relocating, don’t forget to consider the number and quality of healthcare facilities available in the area, especially if you have any health conditions that require frequent attention.
The cultural amenities and opportunities in major urban regions outnumber those in smaller cities and rural locations. You’ll naturally want to live in a big city or its suburbs if you want to be close to world-class museums and theaters, and music venues. When you’re interested in an area, also check the art scene.
The Bottom Line
Relocating to another place isn’t an easy task but it doesn’t have to be scary. As long as you do a thorough search, you’ll be fine. Before you leave, check out our How To Choose a Neighborhood Guide. Good luck!
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