Moving Away: Young and Independent

Updated on April 14, 2020
R Swafford profile image

Three years ago, I moved from my hometown to start a new life in the city. This article is for young people looking to do the same.

Adventure Awaits You

Have you ever dreamed about living somewhere new and fresh, where you are free to remake your life away from everyone and everything you know? Do you dread your hometown, wishing there were more opportunities for you to thrive in your job and relationships? Maybe you just feel like the odd one out.

If you're planning on moving out of state or country for the first time, this article will help you consider the practical steps to take before you make the big move. Get ready to turn your dream into reality!

What Compels You?

I spent 23 years in the same county, with very little job opportunities and this strange feeling that there was much more to see in the world. As much as I was ready to leave behind everything I knew, I decided to move because I was searching for opportunities to grow.

Why do you want to move? Do you feel stuck where you currently live? Are you looking for people who share your values? Do you want to start over and be a different person?

Whatever your reason, my best advice is to move because you have things to look forward to, not just because you want to get away from where you are. Think carefully about why you really want to move away, and where you want to move to.

You may also find it helpful to start a journal as you are going through this process. It makes it easier to get your thoughts straight, and you can jot down important thoughts as they come. Moving is a big decision, and writing will help you think more carefully!

How Will You Make It Happen?

I moved six months after making the decision, but you may need more time to plan and save up. I had $6,000 saved up, and sold all my belongings, except for what would fit in my car, then drove to my new city and stayed with a friend while looking for an apartment.

How can you successfully make the move? Of course, not everyone will have a friend in their place of interest. Assuming you will be renting, other options are temporarily staying in an Airbnb, a hotel, or signing a lease before moving (which either involves visiting beforehand or taking a risk and signing a lease before seeing a place, which is something I do not recommend).

The main idea is that you need some money saved up before moving. If you have debt, you should consider if it is worth it to delay paying that off in order to save up for moving costs. The only way I would recommend that is if you know you could land a job in the new area that would make more money than you are currently making.

You should also consider applying for jobs and setting up interviews in advance. Even if it's not your dream job, you will be much better off if you have a few options and are able to start work quickly.

To figure out how much you need to save beforehand, you will need to know a number of things about the place you want to go. Read on for more details!

Where Do You Want To Live?

You should do some thorough research on wherever you pick. How much is the cost of living in comparison to where you are now? How much would you need to make to be able to afford living there? What kind of jobs are in the area that you qualify for, how much do they pay, and is it enough?

These questions may seem overwhelming, but it is important to be financially realistic when considering where you want to relocate to.

Other things to consider are the climate, culture, laws, and even language if you want to move somewhere foreign. Other than doing research, the best way to judge a new place is to actually visit it. It may take longer to save for the extra trip, but you may find something unexpected while seeing the place in person that you never came across online.

How Much It Will Cost?

Since I moved in my own car and sold most of my stuff, I saved a lot of money on moving trucks and storage. What expenses do you need to save for? Gas, moving trucks, all living expenses for at least a month while you search for a job (rent, electric, water, gas, internet, renter and car insurance, etc), a temporary place to stay if you are unable to set one up before moving, essential groceries, and a mattress (if you aren't taking one with you).

Consider all expenses from during the move up until you land a job, especially those that are unique to your own personal situation (like medications and doctor's visits). Also, keep in mind that you may not be able to afford the same quality of living as you do now, at least not right away (for example, eating out frequently might have to be replaced with cooking more often in order to save on cash).

Leaving Family and Friends

When I told everyone I wanted to move, my family was skeptical and worried that I couldn't make it on my own. My friends clung to me like they would never see me again, and I could see they were afraid of losing my friendship because of the distance.

It was discouraging when people weren't as supportive as I thought they would be, and I felt less confident because of that. But the truth is that they were just instilling their own fears, anxieties, and worries in me.

If you have similar experiences while planning to move, don't lose heart! This is your life, and you deserve to create the one that works best for you. If you plan well, save up, and work hard to find a job that will support you, then your plans will work out. It's okay to remind your loved ones that you've got it under control. Never stop dreaming.

Best of luck and safe travels!

Are You Ready To Move?

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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2019 Rebecca Swafford


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    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      16 months ago from UK

      Thanks for sharing this advice based on your experiences.


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