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Moving to Utah? Congratulations! Utah is an amazing destination with SO much to offer. Like any other state or country, there are many differences in the culture that many that are new to Utah find to be the most difficult. We’ve helped thousands of people move to Utah, and just like anywhere, you should plan ahead and do some research before you go. Here are some tips our customers found to be most helpful.
Before your move to Utah you will need to contact your doctors, dentists, and any other appointments to find them in the area. Your current contacts may be able to provide a recommendation. Also, check with your health insurance regarding facilities covered in your area. Check with your homeowners or renters insurance whether moving is covered and arrange any changes needed. Notify your utility companies about a month ahead of time that you are moving and choose a shut off date. Do a change of address for the following businesses:
- Post Office
- Credit Cards
- Drivers License
- Car Insurance
One of the best qualities of Utah is their people. They are extremely friendly and welcoming and whether you are walking downtown looking at the Christmas lights or going for a stroll, it’s not out of the ordinary to meet a friend or engage in casual conversation. It isn’t strange to smile or say hello to a passerby, so don’t be afraid to be friendly.
Utah is like a whole other country! You wouldn’t move to India without knowing a few things about its culture, right? After living here all my life, many people who have moved here from other places have told me it is like no where else and here is why. Let’s start out with one of the better qualities of Utah; people are extremely friendly and welcoming in Utah. Whether you are just walking downtown looking at the Christmas lights or going for a stroll, it’s not out of the ordinary to meet a friend or engage in some casual conversation. It isn’t strange to smile or say hello to a passerby, so don’t be afraid to be friendly.
Get Ready for All Four Seasons – Utah has all four seasons so be prepared with all the essentials for a hot summer day to a cold, snowy night. Having all the seasons is especially wonderful during the holidays when you can enjoy the snow and some warm hot chocolate and then being able to enjoy the warm summer for hiking and boating.
Be aware of the time and day – One thing out-of-towners need to know ahead of time is to plan ahead for food and drinks. Utah’s hours of operation, whether for a nice restaurant or to enjoy a drink are much different than other states; many restaurants close at 9 or 10 pm on the weekdays and 10 or 11pm on the weekends and the only place to usually eat after that is fast food or Alberto’s (a late night staple in Utah). If you are having company over for drinks you need to prepare ahead of time in Utah, the only place to buy well liquor besides a bar is the liquor store, which opens and closes at 10 and is closed on Sunday. No, we do not have any well liquor at the grocery stores, so plan ahead but we do have beer. Last but not least, last call is 1am… everywhere in Utah. Now that you know, you can prepare so you don’t get stuck in a rut.
We are known for the outdoors – If you really want to enjoy what Utah has to offer get outside and enjoy one of the many mountains located close to SLC. People here love to hike, bike, climb, and camp all over Utah. If you need some equipment, Scheels, recently opened its newest and largest shopping experience in Sandy, Utah and it is a great place to find anything you need for the outdoors. Utah also has the best powder in North America, so if you board or ski and are here when it snows, get on that mountain and experience the powder that makes you feel you are gliding on top of light, fluffy clouds.
A Simple Grid System to Navigate – Utah is mostly laid out with a grid plan, the major streets run north- south and east west. It may confuse visitors and newcomers initially, but it actually makes sense. In Salt Lake City it is very easy to tell which direction you are facing, just look at the mountains – where the sun rises is east (where the big mountains are) and sun sets is west (the smaller mountains). Now that I’ve explained that in Utah we use mostly numbers for street names, there are exceptions. Once you get used to it you can find nearly any address without being familiar.
A great way to make new friends – Face to face interaction is important, there is a tendency to cocoon after a move, partly because you are tired and stressed with all the changes. Moving to a new state can be difficult when you’re away from your friends and family. I would recommend getting out there and joining a group or organization of some sort. Whether it is a sport, hobby, social club, charity group or religious organization, there are lots of ways to get involved with the community and start meeting people. To check out the popular events going on in Utah go to enjoyutah.org and it has up-to-date events and activities for you and your family.
The Inter-Mountain Relocation Council (IRC) has a social connect group that holds events once a month with the sole purpose of helping new people to Utah, meet others who are new to Utah while exploring some of the best that Utah has to offer. Many of their events are free, or subsidized by Utah’s largest corporations. You can request to be added to their events list at email@example.com.
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You just got offered a job in a new city or state that requires relocating, how do you know if this is worth the hassle of moving and relocating? Here are some essential questions to ask yourself before making the big move.
1. How will this affect my relationship?
If you are single, this won’t matter as much. You can do what you want and can travel across the country if you wanted to. If you are in a relationship or married then you need to consider how this will affect your spouse or significant other.
- Would long distance relationship be an option?
- How do they feel about moving to this area?
- Will they be happy?
- Is a job available for them there?
- What would they have to give up?
- Will they consider it?
2. Where exactly will we live?
One thing to always consider is the exact location you will live. Will you be relocated to the suburbs or in the heart of the city? If you are used to a small house in the suburbs and they want you to move to a busy metro city, there will be some adjustments to be made. How is traffic like there? Is it noisy? Are you going to have to drive 30 – an hour to get to work? It’s good to check out the location and not to trust the brochures and commercials you will seearound, make sure you and your family will be happy and safe.
3. What school would your kids be going to?
It is important to keep in mind what school your kids or even future kids would be going to school at. Make sure it is a solid school district that is close by and will give your kids a great experience and opportunity. A few factors to check on, that your kids will be interacting with high-quality teachers, reputation of the school, and the safety of the school. The school your kids go to is a crucial factor for their learning experience and future success.
4. What is there to do nearby?
You can always choose the option of watching TV all day, but if that isn’t enough make sure there are some attractions nearby, especially if you have kids. This means to check if there are national parks close by, parks, clubs, and amusement parks. It is great to check on any summer clubs close by to have your kids join to keep them busy. Making sure there is entertainment for you family nearby will help for a great transition for you and your family.
5. Is it a safe neighborhood?
To make sure you and your family is safe, you can always check the local crime statistics and you can even check the registered sex offenders in the area. This is important and necessary to consider even though it may be difficult. Also consider if you would need to get an alarm system in the area.
6. Is the cost of living different?
You may be offered a pay raise, but that is not always an upgrade, consider the cost of living. Will it be more expensive to buy a gallon of milk at the grocery store? Do you have to travel longer distances to get places? Is the rent more expensive? Consider all parts for the cost of living to make sure that you are actually getting an upgrade and don’t end up sacrificing things you are used to.
7. What are we leaving behind?
One thing that is more difficult to address is what you are leaving behind, great day care? Nanny? Community events? Good schools? Close neighbors? Family? Are you leaving behind a support system that will hurt your relationships? If your mom is always there to watch your kids in emergencies or just if you need a night out, what will you do in your new location? You can always make new friends, but will you be happy? Family is very important, consider if you and your kids will still be able to get to know their grandma, uncles, cousins, etc. If you don’t visit as much as it is, then just visiting on the major holidays isn’t a big change.
8. Is this a good change to make in the long run?
In the long run once the adjustments are made and you can feel at home, is this a good move? If this is a big step in your career and it looks like once your family gets used to the adjustments they will be just as happy, if not more. It’s crucial to consider your family’s happiness after the adjustment. Will your kids be able to get involved with the things they love at the new location? Is this job a life changer? Moving is not a short fix, but a big investment that requires much consideration. Pay attention to your neighborhood, schools, attractions, and safety.
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