Moving to an unfamiliar town can be intimidating, even if you love your new home. From making social connections to navigating rush hour, you have a lot to learn, no matter how many times you may have visited previously. Whether you’ve just moved or are planning ahead, here are seven ways you can feel at home in your new neighborhood.
Remove Moving Stress from the Equation
You have a lot to look forward to with your move. Still, getting there can be a hassle. Paring down clutter, packing belongings, and doing all the heavy lifting can leave you exhausted before you even arrive at your new home. Fortunately, you can connect with professional movers who can swiftly and carefully help you move your belongings from point A to point B.
Be Smart About Your Boxes
Before you even start packing, think ahead to moving day. Prioritizing the items you’ll need most makes it easier to pack – and less likely that you’ll be scrambling to find your phone charger upon arrival. Downsizing and reducing clutter ahead of time can also help make your move simpler and cheaper.
Consumer Affairs also recommends moving tips like using towels and clothing as packing materials, creating an inventory list to keep track of boxes, and labeling everything for easier opening later. Being smart about your boxes ensures that you feel more at home upon arrival – instead of dragging the same baggage with you from your past residence.
Swap Utilities Seamlessly
There’s nothing worse than arriving at your new place, only to be without hot water or an internet connection. Plan your utility swaps well in advance – and do your research for the best options for services like cable TV and Wi-Fi. The good news is that even rural areas on the outskirts of Phoenix can get reliable high-speed Wi-Fi service. Just remember to update or adjust your security plan for all of your devices and networks once you move in.
For the most comfortable and convenient move possible, schedule your utilities to come on a day or two before you arrive. Many companies offer remote setup – so you don’t necessarily have to be home to get connected.
Get Out and Explore (On Foot)
No matter where you move, there are places you can walk from your front door. If you move to a city, walk a few blocks in each direction to scout out your new abode. In more rural areas, driving a few minutes in each direction may make more sense – or you could go for a nature walk if sidewalks aren’t a thing in your town. Grabbing your bicycle and heading out can also be an enjoyable way to experience the city.
Plus, the more you go out, the more likely you are to meet locals or even run into your neighbors. Pew Research found that 57 percent of Americans know only some of their neighbors – a good thing if you like to keep to yourself, not so good for feeling at home on your street.
Check Out Local Tourism Agencies
Though tourism agencies are mostly aimed at short-term visitors, you may find a wealth of details for new residents, too. Visit Phoenix, for example, offers city information in the form of an event calendar, information on local businesses, places to visit and blog posts on recent and upcoming happenings.
Most bigger cities – or areas with a specific tourist attraction – tend to have tourism websites and even visitor centers. You may also find helpful information on the city’s Chamber of Commerce website. Make these of your first stops – whether digitally or physically – when moving to a new place.
Download Apps to Connect
Connecting with people – and forming friendships – within the community can be challenging. Especially if your neighbors mostly keep to themselves, you may wonder how you can meet people around your town. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to connect – though most of them begin online (or on your smartphone).
Apps like Meetup allow you to search geographically and by interest to find people who enjoy the same hobbies or share the same viewpoint as you. You can also attend events for various occasions or interests. If you have a dog, another great way to find friends is by checking out apps like Meet My Dog, which connects pet owners so their pups can play (and the humans can chat).
Become a Volunteer
If you want to both explore and support your new town, consider volunteering locally. For example, you can find volunteer opportunities in Greater Phoenix through Hands On Phoenix, which covers every part of the city. Whether you want to help socialize adoptable pets at animal shelters, clean up local parks or gardens, or mentor youth in the city, Phoenix has a volunteer opportunity to help you feel right at home.
Try Out Multiple Forms of Transport
Getting around your new town might be challenging at first, even if you are comfortable driving. One excellent way to learn more about the city is by trying out different forms of transportation. In Phoenix, you can hop on the Phoenix Transit Bus and go nearly anywhere – without getting lost or arriving late to your destination. Public transit can be an affordable and easy way to explore, but ride-sharing services are another option.
Downloading the Uber or Lyft app gives you access to on-demand rides anywhere you want to go. Rideshares can also be a great way to meet people – and pick their brains about things to do in your new neighborhood.
Moving to a new city is refreshing and intimidating at the same time. But once you arrive, there are tons of ways to help you feel at home. Try one – or all – of these ideas for getting more comfortable and connected in your new place.