You might be considering a change of scenery, but it can be tough to decide where to relocate to. You have to think about various aspects such as the cost of living, school systems, and public transportation options. You might also be looking at your credit score, and trying to decide if it is finally time to put a down payment on a house.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing where to live:

Healthcare

When moving to a new city, healthcare may not be the first thing you think of, but it should be at the top of your list. No matter your age, healthcare is important. This is especially true if you have any chronic conditions that require a specialist. If you have children, you will also want to make sure that there are quality pediatricians in the area, or family therapists close by for any on-going health concerns.

Mental health care is also key to living a happy, meaningful life. When choosing your new home, consider asking yourself “is there a therapist near me?” Some prefer to physically visit a mental health professional, but there are plenty of others who don’t. The good news is that there are also other, home-based or remote, options even if there is an office in close proximity. Teletherapy offers a more convenient solution to getting the best therapist care you need, without having to leave your new home.

Housing Market

Whether you decide to put aside an amount of money every month and rent your real estate, or take your first step towards buying your first home, you still want to take a look at the housing market first. Home prices will actually help you to gauge rental rates. Comparing national housing statistics can give you insight on overall affordability, median home prices, and more, to really get a sense of a home’s value.

Depending on your budget and what you learn from your research, you can decide if it’s time to visit a leasing office or enroll in mortgage 101. If you do decide to buy and become a first time homeowner, many banks and credit unions offer free resources to help with the mortgage process. You can learn how to get started with a mortgage lender, compare and contrast loan types to get a lower interest rate, and secure the best mortgage loan for you. You don’t need a master’s degree in real estate to get the best mortgage loan. All you need is a bit of time for research.

Lifestyle

You should consider what type of lifestyle you’ll want to have in your new location. Are you more of a city person who loves urban sprawl or downtown areas? Or do you prefer the quiet, and the community spirit of the suburbs? Is your goal to have a farm with several acres of land? Making a decision about your surroundings should play a major role in your decision, which is why it requires a great deal of attention.

Lifestyle considerations as far as nightlife and entertainment are also important. You’ll want to make sure that there are options for your social life that match your personality, or activities that you would like to explore, close by.

Job Market

Naturally, the job market is a crucial deciding factor in where to live. Depending on your profession, there may or may not be a lot of demand in your field. Make sure that you will be able to find relevant employment, before making the jump to a new location.

If you are looking for a new career, it is a good idea to look at the job outlook for your desired field. The United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics, for example, publishes a handbook that provides occupational statistics over a number of years for the different states in the U.S.

Weather

Weather is another under-the-radar factor that is important when comparing places to live. If you prefer hot weather, you’re unlikely to want to move to a state like Rhode Island, which has a colder climate. However, beyond the dilemma between hot or cold, weather can also impact other areas. For example, if you move to Florida you may want to remember that hurricanes are a regular occurrence, and the resulting damage to your property incur significant repair costs, which is a lot of money being spent frequently. If you aren’t put off by this, and still would rather have the sunshine of the south coast, then at least reconsider your insurance policy to cover the repair bills.

Alternatively, you may choose to live in your new RV. It is worth pointing out, that your RV warranty will cover different things than your insurance, and you’ll want to make sure that they both provide the coverage you need. Potential weather damage and risk will vary depending on the climate of where you decide to live, regardless of whether that is in a recreational vehicle, or a three-story mansion, so think carefully.

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