3 Things to Consider Before You Move

As humans, we often have a “grass is greener” mentality. We think that our lives will better if we move somewhere else. A new town might be just the thing to help us get out of these financial and lifestyle doldrums. Sometimes, it’s not about a new town, but about moving to a bigger house.

Before you decide to move, though, it’s a good idea to really step back and consider the situation. Are things really so bad where you are? And will they really be so great someplace else? Here are 3 things to consider before you move:

1. How Will it Impact Your Disposable Income?

Your first question should be about how the move will impact your disposable income. If you are moving to a bigger house, you will have bigger expenses to go with it. If you aren’t making more money, the amount of disposable income you have will be reduced.

You also need to consider this when moving to a new locale. You might have a higher salary at your new job in a new city, but the cost of living might be higher as well. Use a cost of living comparison calculator to determine the difference. You might find that your higher salary doesn’t mean more disposable income. It could even mean less if the cost of living is drastically higher in the new town.

A lower disposable income can make things tight for you, and reduce your quality of life. If you are going to see a big drop in the amount of money that you actually have to spend on the things you want, rather than on financial obligations, then you need to reconsider your move.

2. What Will Your Family Do?

Another issue is what your family will do. If you have a spouse and/or children, a move can make a big difference in their lives as well. What schools will your children attend? Will your life partner be able to find the type of fulfilling career that he or she wants? Even if you are going to your dream job, it can be difficult if your loved one has to give up his or her own desired job.

Look at the impacts that these life changes are likely to have on all the members of your family, and do what you can to make the transition smoother. And, if it appears that it’s going to be too much for your family to take, it’s a good idea to consider not making the move. You don’t want to put your family’s long-term well-being at risk for a few extra dollars.

3. How Much Hassle Will It be?

Some things are worth the trouble they cause. But you do need to consider whether your move will be worth it, especially if it’s a choice and not a necessity. Everything that goes with moving, from the packing to the unpacking, is hard work and requires time and effort. Additionally, you might have to sell your own home, and possibly for less than you paid. Think about all of the things that you have to go through to make the move work. If you aren’t getting some sort of financial help from your new employer, it might not be worth it.

Moving is a big commitment, and before you change your situation, make sure you understand what’s involved. Discuss it with your family and decide whether it’s worth the trouble and cost.

Written by Tom

Tom Drake writes for Stupid Cents and Canadian Finance Blog. Whenever he's not working on his online endeavors, he's either doing his "real job" as a financial analyst or spending time with his wife and two boys.

2 Responses to 3 Things to Consider Before You Move

  1. eemusings says:

    A big thing for me would be how would a move impact my commute – we currently have one car and I walk to work in 20 minutes, which is awesome.

  2. Actually getting ready to put our house up for sale on April 1st. We buy a house, live in it at least 4 or 5 years, and fix it up and then sell it. This will be the hardest move, though, because our kids are grown and won’t be going with us. That limits our options because we don’t want to be too far from the family. We’re also older so the thought of starting over isn’t appealing as it used to be. We’ve actually considered some of the points you made but in the end decided it was the right decision.

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