It’s not uncommon nowadays to move across the state or across the country to take advantage of a job opportunity, which most likely means moving to a new city that you know very little about.  Here are four great starting tips to get you headed in the right direction before packing up your Crown Point, Cedar Lake, or Hobart home and shipping off to an unknown area.

Know your needs and wants.  This one may sound like common sense but think about it for a minute.  Do you prefer urban, suburban, or country living?  Is this move an opportunity to try something new, OR will it require different living arrangements than you are accustomed to?  What about an apartment, Condo, or a single family home?  As far as accommodations go is this next step on your career path a permanent stop or is it potentially only temporary?  Should you consider renting if this is a temporary position?  If the length of your stay is indeterminate do you have elementary school children who will eventually need a good high school to attend?  Take the time to write out all your needs and wants now so you’re clear when you begin to…

Ask questions.  Do you know anyone already living in the area you’re moving to, or anyone who used to live there?  What about the company you are going to work for?  Who recruited and/or hired you?  What can they tell you about the city, the schools, the commute, shopping and entertainment, etc?

Visit.  You wouldn’t buy a car without a test drive nor would you accept a job six states away without visiting the area first.  Use the information you gathered when you spoke with friends, associates, and contacts already living there as a starting point.  Drive neighborhoods; drive the commute to the new office.  What’s traffic like during rush hour?  How close are grocery stores, gas stations, and movie theaters?

Contact a good Realtor.  You might put this one right after defining your needs and wants.  A good Realtor can answer questions on the local housing market including the best way to get you those wish list items while staying within your relocation housing budget.  A good Realtor can also help you maximize your home viewing time while you’re in town visiting the new office.  Don’t know a Realtor where you’re headed?  Give us a call.  We’ll refer you to a great knowledgeable agent who can help you find the most home for the best price with the fewest hassles.