9 Best Moving Interstate Tips

December 1, 2022Moving Tips
Georgia Michaelson

Born and raised in St. Louis, Georgia Michaelson is a content writer with a specialty in moving and traveling. Her tips can help you relocate without a fuss

Relocating is complicated and difficult. It’s a big job – you have to transfer all of your belongings to another place. Even if you are relocating to an apartment down the street, it can be overwhelming, but what to do if you are switching states? Don’t panic – we’ve prepared our moving interstate tips to help you out through this tough transition.

Things to Consider When Relocating to Another State – Follow Our Moving Interstate Tips

There are some serious things you need to consider before even thinking about relocating to a new state. Relocating to a new state isn’t as simple as any other regular move. You have to think about everything – how to get a job, register to vote, and research any laws that are different from the ones in your hometown.

If you’re relocating with kids, you have to consider child custody laws. If you were planning on relocating with pets, double-check if your pets are even allowed in your future hometown. For example, you can’t take your turtle with you to North Dakota or North Carolina. There are a lot of things you should take into consideration before switching states. Don’t rush into it, and be sure to take a look at our tips on moving to another state.


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#1 Do Thorough Research Before Deciding Where to Live

Besides researching the difference in laws between states, you need to take other factors into consideration and decide where to live. Try to picture your perfect home. Think about the size of the house, the backyard, and the weather – maybe you’ve always wanted to live in a colder climate with a long winter. Once you have a specific location in mind, it’s time to do thorough research.

Find out where the good school districts are, what the crime rates are like, what is the safest neighborhood and its demographics, what are the best places to eat in, and so on. Look for house-hunting tips, and take a look at property websites like Zillow. You have to do your due diligence and get familiar with your new city. Be informed on important things like emergency contacts and important things in your surroundings, such as hospitals or vets.

Consider the Difference in Living Expenses and the Change in Your Lifestyle

Relocating to a new place implies a lot of changes, but the biggest one that comes as a surprise to a lot of people is the difference in living expenses. One of the biggest relocation mistakes people make is they forget to factor in this difference. You have to realize that the same salary can’t afford you the same lifestyle in different states. That means that if your salary stays the same, your lifestyle is going to change.

If you are planning on relocating to a big city, you will notice the rents are much higher, groceries cost more, and even your favorite muffin is $2 more expensive than in your hometown. The biggest shock hits people who are relocating from a small town to a big city. You can’t expect to have the same quality of life with the same monthly budget in New York and Jackson, Mississippi, for example. If this is the kind of move that awaits you, we would advise you to get a job before relocating.

small suburban neighborhood
Do some research on your dream neighborhood

#2 Plan Your Move In Time

If you’ve been asking yourself How do I prepare to move to another state or How do I relocate smoothly, we’re here to let you in on a little secret. The greatest relocation hack we could ever give you is to start planning your move in time. Sounds too simple, but getting organized to move is the most important part of the process.

The first step on how to prepare to move to another state is to make a moving budget. Alongside a neat relocation binder, having a relocation budget is one of the relocation essentials. You can’t know how to plan a move to another state without knowing your budget. Once you know how much you can afford to spend on your move, you can go on to look for movers.

papers and calculator
Organize your finances by setting a budget for the long move

#3 Carefully Choose a Relocation Company

When choosing a relocation company, you have to find reliable professionals. When looking, be patient and don’t rush. Don’t pick the first one that pops up, as that’s a good way of running into relocation scams. And always remember, you are spending a lot of money on hiring moving services.

So try to find legitimate, reputable companies. You can check if a company is legitimate by doing some research and seeing if they have a license. A good rule to follow is to always check out at least three options before making your final decision. Compare prices, experiences, and reviews. Be sure to ask your friends and family that have recently moved for company recommendations and referrals.

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No matter how experienced the movers are or how lucky you consider yourself to be, mistakes can happen even to the best of us. Sometimes things break or get lost during transport. And it’s always better to be prepared for the worst-case scenario and have your items protected and insured than to hope everything will turn out fine. Talk to your movers and set up a protection plan that suits your needs. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Shipping Cars In the USA Has Been Trending for a Few Years, so Consider Hiring an Auto Transport Company

Once you’ve hired movers, it’s like a giant weight has been lifted from your shoulders. You have someone taking care of and transporting your belongings. But who is going to take care of your car? Instead of hiring an unreliable driver or driving a long, tiring trip by yourself, consider hiring a reliable car shipping company. It’s one of the greatest moving day tips we could give you, and it will make your move stress free. So why not move your car to another state? You can choose whether you want door-to-door auto transport or terminal-to-terminal car shipping. The most affordable option most people pick is open trailer auto transport. You can even opt for enclosed auto transport.

Professional USA auto transport company movers
Make sure to choose reliable professional movers to help you out

#4 Declutter and Be Smart About Packing Your Items

If you’ve been down this road before and you’ve found yourself buried in piles of boxes, thinking about why is it hard to move to another state – you’ve probably skipped decluttering. A good trick on how to save money is to learn that the less stuff you have, the cheaper the move will be. Not only will your move be cheaper, but your packing will be a thousand times easier. Decluttering is an essential step to any efficient move.

Decluttering is a hassle, but it does make packing easier. You can start by figuring out what to get rid of and what to keep. You can sell certain items online or organize a garage sale. Donate unwanted items like old clothes to those in need. Create columns to help you stay on track:

  • Column A – Keep,
  • Column B – Toss,
  • Column C – Sell,
  • Column D – Donate.

#5 Transfer Your Utilities

Transferring utilities is an important task that often gets overlooked but should definitely be on your relocating to another state checklist. So don’t forget to call your service providers and have them transfer your utilities such as electricity, water, gas, cable, Internet, and so on. Try to be mindful of the timeline because if you do it too early, you’ll end up paying utility bills for two households. On the other hand, if you do it too late, you’ll probably end up unpacking in the dark.

a close-up of a paper for utility billing
Transfer your utilities at the right moment

#6 Change Your Address and Update Your Personal Documentation

When creating your relocating to-do list, don’t forget to include the mandatory step of updating your personal documents. After registering your changed postal address, be sure to update all documentation tied to it. That includes your ID, driver’s license, passport, health insurance, and so on. Depending on your line of work, this also applies to transferring professional licenses.

Don’t Forget to Register Your Car

One of the crucial things to do after relocating is to register your car. Depending on where you will be relocating, you’ll have a deadline by which you have to update your vehicle registration. This deadline can range anywhere from 10 days to two months, so do your research beforehand. Unfortunately, there is no way you can do this online, so you will have to contact your local DMV office. If you could use some pointers on how to register your car, watch this video.

YouTube video

#7 Cancel Subscriptions and Memberships

As we had mentioned before, when your address changes, so does a lot of other things. Some of them wouldn’t even cross your mind, such as receiving your monthly subscriptions. When you move, you have to cancel your subscriptions and memberships. You can even transfer them just by signing up with a different address, but not all of them. For example, you can’t transfer your gym membership, you will have to cancel that. Also, don’t forget to forward your mail.

A letter
Forward your mail right before the move, it will help you in the long run

#8 Cut Costs Wherever You Can

Relocating is pretty expensive, especially interstate relocating. The cost of the whole experience can range anywhere from a couple of thousand dollars to $15,000. That is not cheap, and it will most likely drain out your savings. That’s why we’ve prepared some tricks you can use to cut corners and save money.

There Is a Right Time of The Year to Move

Believe it or not, the cost of your relocation services can vary depending on the time of year. Relocating during summer is always more expensive, so winter is definitely the best time of year to move. Also, you can save money by relocating during weekdays instead of weekends and holidays.

DIY Your Move

If you can’t afford to hire professional help, you can always pull off the move by yourself. It will be difficult and time-consuming, but all you would have to pay for are packing supplies, the cost of truck rental, and fuel.

Get Free Boxes

Instead of paying hundreds of dollars on packing supplies, you can get free boxes and cut that cost almost in half. Someone is always trying to get rid of boxes, so ask your friends and neighbors if they have any, or use the ones from your workplace if you can.

Ask for a Relocation Package

The most efficient way to save money on relocating is to simply not pay a dime for it. You can do that if you’re relocating for work, as your employer should cover your relocation expenses. Feel free to ask for a relocation package if one hasn’t been offered to you.

#9 Enjoy Your Interstate Move

While we admit relocating is stressful, it should also be one of the most exciting moments of your life – a fresh beginning. So don’t just focus on the bad stuff. It doesn’t matter if one of your boxes went missing or a lamp broke in the truck. What matters is you’re embarking on a life journey and moving into your new home. Professional movers are there to help you with the heavy lifting, so all that’s left for you to do is not to forget to say goodbye to friends and family and enjoy your interstate move.

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