Things to Consider When Relocating to Santa Cruz
A relocation can be both a really stressful time and an emotional moment in someone’s life, even when you are moving to a beautiful beach town. But whether you’re relocating to Santa Cruz for a job or just moving away from bad neighbors or to be closer to your family, a little bit of planning can go a long way in avoiding the stress and anxiety related to a relocation.
Hi, I’m Shemeika Fox, your Santa Cruz Real Estate Expert. And yes, moving is hard and time consuming; I’m not gonna sugarcoat it. You can’t find any of your things, boxes are stacked up everywhere, there is so much to plan for, then if you add children and pets up in the mix, well, it can potentially be a recipe for stress and disaster. But on the other hand relocating to Santa Cruz can be a really exciting journey and can go smoothly if you are prepared for success.
Your first step in moving to new place, like Santa Cruz, is to do your research. It is so important to research your new location. Maybe you already have a home lined up in Santa Cruz, and maybe you don’t. But either way, research is your best ally before you relocate. And thank God, we have the internet, and platforms like YouTube, these days to help us get a better feel for cities. Consider watching videos or reading articles about all that Santa Cruz has to offer. I also encourage you to look up and join Facebook groups of people who currently live in Santa Cruz, like a Mom’s Group. Make connections and talk to the locals in order to get a better feel for the area and to get recommendations from them.
Think about things like what are the options for entertainment and leisure in Santa Cruz? What are your hobbies? Can you still do the things you love in your new home? Santa Cruz has so much to offer and there is so much to do. But keep in mind, Santa Cruz is a tourist destination. Many people come to Santa Cruz to surf, hike, play at the beach, go to the Boardwalk, ride bikes, shop, dine, go wine tasting, and to enjoy the sunshine. If living in a busy beach town during the summer time does not sound appealing, maybe relocating to Santa Cruz is not for you. But again, talk to the locals in order to get a better idea of the day-to-day during the summer.
If you have children, you’re probably concerned about your school options. Deciding which school to send your children is very important. Luckily, Santa Cruz has many top ranked schools in our county. But again, be sure to do your research and talk to the locals to take a deep dive.
Do you have a job already lined up for when you arrive? Some people who relocate to Santa Cruz already have their job lined up. While some are just looking for a new chapter and the beach lifestyle. If you’re part of the second group, look up jobs and companies online before you move so that you’ll be ready to apply and interview once you arrive in Santa Cruz. And again, if you talk to locals, you may be able to find some awesome job opportunities.
Next, it is important to choose a neighborhood in Santa Cruz. One of the coolest aspects of Santa Cruz is how different the neighborhoods can be. We have the mountains and forest in San Lorenzo Valley, and then we have the banana belt areas and the beach areas. Is it possible to physically visit your new home and/or neighborhood before you move in? If you are looking at homes in the Santa Cruz area, our team right here at Fox Realty Group offers our clients virtual showings so that you can get a better sense of not only specific homes but the areas in which the home of interest is located. Especially during the pandemic, we have become experts in virtual showings and we take the time to walk our clients around the neighborhood so they can see what is nearby. Google Maps might also give you a good idea of what to expect. Have a look at the houses around. Where are the closest amenities? Is it easy to get around by car, walking, and/or transit, bikes, et cetera? All of these things should be considered when relocating to Santa Cruz and choosing where you want to live.
The next thing to consider when relocating to Santa Cruz is to get organized and to plan your move. I recommend using checklists. I love checklists; they’re my best friend. There are a few things when thinking about relocating to Santa Cruz that you can do to help ease the pain and anxiety from relocating from one place to another, specifically if it’s an out of state move. Utilizing moving checklists and labels will come in handy and will help keep you organized. Remember to label all of your boxes to make unpacking easier and avoid your essential items getting misplaced. Keep important documents and personal items readily available, and make eating and sleeping arrangements before you travel.
Once you have moved, there are some things you can do to make the move go smoothly. Unpack and organize systematically. Focus on getting the larger items placed and worry about decorating last. Make sure that all your belongings have been safely delivered to your new location. Remember to unpack essential items for such as bedding, toiletries, as you will want have a shower and a good night’s sleep after a long day of traveling. I would imagine. I would, anyways. And all the packing and unpacking will allow you to relax into your new space. Allow a couple of days to familiarize yourself with your new Santa Cruz home and neighborhood. I know by doing these few things, you’ll feel right at home in no time at all.
When relocating to Santa Cruz, meeting new people is essential. After all, you will be building a new community for you and your family. Here are a few ideas on what you can do to meet people quickly. Throw a house warming party and invite your neighbors! Introducing yourself to people next door can be a little bit daunting and slightly awkward, possibly at first, but a party is a fun way to break the ice. It always helps to get to know people in your neighborhood and a party may help you not only get some local insight on your new location, but also might help you make some new friends. I also recommend that you get to know your new coworkers if you’re starting a new job. Consider going out for drinks after work, or inviting them to a restaurant, or on a hike, that you would like to try. Ask them for local advice and recommendations on new things to try in Santa Cruz. Another good way to meet people in Santa Cruz is by joining a gym, like Pacific Edge or Hot Elevation Studios, where they focus on community and health. There are tons of groups who meet up and do fun things together, you just have to do the research. If you enjoy running, find a running club. If you love to mountain bike, join a mountain biking club! There is so much to do in Santa Cruz and there are so many active people in our town!
If you’re relocating to Santa Cruz and this is far away from family, building a support network of new friends and neighbors will help you fight loneliness. Make sure your children and pets are acclimated to their new surroundings. Get involved in the community. Now that you’ve settled in and unpacked, met your new neighbors, and discovered what is around your new home and in the neighborhood and area that you’ve just moved to, your new routine, volunteering at a retirement home or animal shelter, joining a gym, church, book club, or just getting out there and exploring your new community will help you feel like a local and avoid homesickness.
If you’ve got children, think about activities that you can enroll them in, such as Junior Life Guards, so that they can get acclimated to their new home and their new community and have an easier time of meeting new friends. Then you can meet their parents and you can make new friends yourself. When my daughter, Ellia started school, I quickly became friends with all of the parents of her new friends, and to date, these are still our closest friends and the most supportive community I have had the pleasure of becoming a part of. What sports or activities can you enroll in for yourself and/or for your kids? Can you put on a neighborhood meet and greet? There are a lot of ways to meet new people.
Another thing to consider when relocating to Santa Cruz, is how to strategize the relocation process if you have children and/or pets. Moving with children and pets can be challenging, if you are not adequately prepared. Making sure that you have snacks and drinks available for your kids as well as food and water for your pets is going to be a lifesaver. If you’re driving, make sure to plan your route considering the bathroom breaks will be more frequent when you travel with a child, especially a young one. Unless they’re wearing diapers, then you can just keep them in their diapers the whole time. Have some form of entertainment ready by downloading movies and games to a phone or tablet, and keep toys nearby instead of inside the moving truck.
Relocating to Santa Cruz has different effects on different people, but the process is exhausting for all. I would imagine. Starting anew in a different place is indeed challenging and requires patience and determination. Nevertheless, it is doable. And with the tips mentioned above, I hope your relocation will be more comfortable.
I’m Shemeika Fox, your Santa Cruz Real Estate Expert. And if you’d like more tips on relocating to Santa Cruz most efficiently, please feel free to reach out. As always, I’m here to help.