Compliments to you on your family’s choice to move to Spokane, Washington! Amongst the countless perks of living in Spokane are its affordability, steady job growth, and diversity, to name a few. This “hidden gem of the Northwest” can be the perfect place to live for people considering uprooting their lives for a fresh start all the way across the country. But, a lot goes into a cross-country move, including choosing the right neighborhood, finding a home, and adjusting to your new lifestyle. If you don’t know where to start, look no further! We’ve outlined each step of your cross-country move so you can settle in Spokane as smoothly as possible.
Learn about Spokane
How will you know if Spokane is right for you? Learn everything you can about the city! An in-person visit will give you an even clearer picture of what life would be like. Before you decide on Spokane as your forever home, familiarize yourself with its benefits:
- Call a real estate agent in Spokane and ask-a-way! They could receive a few ways, but if they are open to answering your questions, consider using them if you pull the trigger and decide to buy in the area.
- If it is open during your discovery-mission (in-person or just call), check out the Visit Spokane visitors center. It really is a great tool to navigate the city!
- It seems simple, but check Yelp! Yeah, it’s great for looking for good eats and a car repair shop, but this also can tell you a lot about the city and the people. Read through the reviews…and…make sure that they have GREAT places to eat—this says a lot about the area and who lives there. And, do you really want to live in a city where decent food is hard to find??? No. Food is a powerful thing.
When your finances are stable and you’re finally ready to buy a home, it’s essential to make a mortgage preapproval your first step. A preapproval is a determination by a lender that you’re capable of borrowing a certain amount of money to purchase a home. It tells you how much house you can afford, which is especially important when relocating to a city with a vastly different cost of living. Being preapproved also shows a seller you’re serious about buying, and gives you an advantage when it comes time to put in an offer. Contact your lender to learn how to get a mortgage preapproval before you begin house hunting in Spokane.
Find Your Dream Home
Your dream home comes with a lot of needs and wants attached to it. If this is your first time buying a house, you might overlook some of the details that you should consider in your ideal home. Here are a few:
- Number of bedrooms
- Age of the home
- School district
- Market and interest rates
Reach a stance on these details before you start shopping around and touring homes. This will significantly narrow down your search and make your decisions to put in offers much more intentional and successful. If you called a real estate agent and asked them about the city, well, it’s time to start partnering with them to find your house in the area they just spoke highly about!
Get Your Home Inspected
Once you decide on a home, make sure to get it inspected by a professional. You can make an offer on a home with an inspection as a contingency, meaning if the inspection goes badly and repairs are unveiled that you can’t afford, you can retract your offer. If it goes well, you can move forward as planned. However, in today’s extremely competitive market, many are choosing to waive an inspection to give themselves the best chance at their offer getting accepted. Know that this option presents many risks, and unexpected repairs can become costly. Another preventative action you can take to reduce the risk is to purchase a home warranty policy. This covers the cost of some major systems, like heating and air conditioning repairs or replacements or major appliances should they malfunction.
Consult a Moving Professional
A moving service doesn’t just help you with transporting your belongings across the country. Most full-service moving companies offer packing, unpacking, storage units, disposal, and supply most materials needed for these steps. For a cross-country move, this could be a wise and safe investment, as your most treasured items have a long distance to travel. It’s important to know that there are over 7,000 moving companies in the U.S., but only 24.7% offer services over 500 miles. Do your research and get estimates from some trusted full-service movers to choose the best one for you in terms of service and price.
Update Your Information
When you move across the country, it’ll be extremely difficult to retrieve any mail or packages that get sent to your old address. That said, make sure that you change your address in all necessary services. This includes your billing information, cell phone provider, and other services dependent upon your billing address. Visit the post office and forward all of your mail to your new address as well. Then, set up all your new services prior to moving, such as your trash services, utilities, cable, and internet. Get to know your local service providers as well. Should any HVAC repairs arise in your new Spokane home, contact R&R Heating and Air Conditioning for any questions or routine maintenance. They can run a system check just to make sure that you head off any major problems in advance and can get a check up in the books for next year!
Line Up a Career
Fortunately, in today’s age of remote work, many jobs have taken a hybrid or fully-remote approach, making it finally practical to relocate to one’s dream city. If you’re moving to be closer to family, to experience a different culture, or to live a more affordable lifestyle, you might not yet have a career lined up. There are a plethora of job search tools out there today, but always be sure to check the city’s website for possible openings that might be right up your alley. Regardless of what type of job you choose, begin searching and interviewing prior to your move so you don’t experience a lapse in income.
So, that’s it…good luck in your new living space search, but remember, consider the Inland Northwest very seriously. Spokane is nice.