Are You Cool With Moving to a New Climate?

Are You Cool With Moving to a New Climate?

Moving Men

How do you prepare for moving to a different climate? Not all changes are triggered by long, cross-country moves. In some parts of the country, just moving a few towns over can have a big impact.

The climate is no small consideration when you take into account potential money drains such as heating and cooling bills, water usage, and the basic supplies to keep yourself warm or cool.

Here are a few things to think about:

Budget for Gear

Whether it’s a snow blower in Colorado or a good parka in Omaha, setting extra funds aside can lessen the sting of having to shell out big bucks for new gear. Don’t be taken by surprise by $500 for a new leaf-blower or sump pump at Lowe’s, $300 for rain gear at REI, or a drawerful of new shorts in Texas.

Expect Surprises

Expect the unexpected even if you think you know what you’re getting into. “When I moved to California, I wish someone had told me that hooded sweatshirts would be an essential component of my wardrobe,” Jessica Pasko, a journalist who traded upstate New York for Santa Cruz, Calif., said a few years ago. “I wish someone had told me that the weather could literally change by about 30 degrees from morning to afternoon – and that, because of microclimates, you can drive 10 minutes and it’s a full 10 degrees hotter.”

Adjust Your Time Frame

Be flexible with how you set up your day. Moving to Arizona? If you’re a runner who typically jogs after the kids go to bed, you might want to switch your workouts to the (relatively) cooler mornings instead. If you’re decamping to Michigan, you might want to prepare for making your run a lunchtime dash.

Talk to Your New Boss or Co-workers

Want to look like a tourist in Portland, Ore.? Carry an umbrella. The locals all wear good rain gear. But you may not know that until a local tells you. Ditto household issues, such as pests. Did you know that in some southern climes the cockroaches fly? Your best bet is to suss out a fellow transplant who’s been there long enough to know the lay of the land, but not so long that they can’t sympathize with your plight.

Talk to Your Realtor

Is there anything you need to know about the local weather when buying a home, such as drafts in an old building, air circulation in a new one, or how frequently you need to clean the gutters? Are you checking out a low-lying area where a basement could flood? Will pipes freeze if you’re not careful in January? Is it worth paying extra for a storm shelter? An experienced Realtor or relocation expert will be accustomed to these questions, and should be able to help you navigate your new area. They can also suggest questions for when you meet with a home inspector, if you’re looking to buy a new place.

Focus on the Positive

Everyone associates Salt Lake City with winter, in large part because of the majestic Wasatch Mountains and the 2002 Olympics, according to environmental activist Matt Pacenza. However, he said, the city itself gets only a modest amount of snow, while the nearby mountains at higher elevations get dumped on.

“It’s kind of perfect,” Pacenza said. “There’s plenty of snow in the hills just 30 minutes away, but down here it’s manageable.”

In other words, moving to a new climate could give you a chill, but it can also be pretty cool.

http://www.moving.com/articles/how-to-prepare-to-live-in-a-new-climate.asp