5 Things To Do Before Moving To California

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I’m Moving Out To Cali, To Cali, To Cali…

Taking a chance, packing up your life into a compact car, and moving across country to a new place is both exciting and nerve racking. On an impulse decision, I’m putting in my two week notice at my current job and then making the move to Los Angeles, California. I was born and raised in a small town a little north of Green Bay, Wisconsin (Go Pack Go!) so this is going to be a big transition for myself coming from a small town.

Go west young man, haven’t you been told California’s full of whisky, women and gold… Toby Keith said it all in his song “Should’ve Been A Cowboy”. As I stated above this was an impulsive decision and currently do not have a job lined up or anything like that. I do however have some old childhood friends who have also made the move and are currently living there. I’m going room with them and use them as a resource to get to know the area, and hopefully hit the ground running once I arrive and find a job.

How am I going to do this? What kind of a budget will I have? What’s my game plan? I officially just decided on this move today, I’m currently still in the beginning stages of planning. I have about a month left before I make the move, so here is my plan in a nut shell so far…

What I need to do within the next month:

1. Liquidate Everything I Own. This is the first and most important thing since I don’t want to have any baggage. It will also be a good way to raise some funds for starting out considering I probably won’t have a job when I first arrive.

2. Buy A Reliable Vehicle. The car I currently drive is a beater to say the truth and not something I want to rely on to make the 28 hour drive there with. Also, the cost of living is much higher in California and too the cost vehicles are higher, so it only make economical since to buy a newer vehicle while I’m still in Wisconsin.

3. Begin Job Searching. If I can get some job prospects lined up before I arrive it’ll make the transition much less stressful financially.

4. Set-up A Budget. I need to figure out a good estimate of what the cost of living will be there and how much money I’ll need to survive each month. My budget will consist of:

  • A Worst-Case Scenario. It could take a few months to secure a good source of income, I’ll want to plan for at least two months with no income.
  • A Best-Case Scenario. In this case, I’ll transition into a job immediately after I arrive there!
  • Health Insurance. I’m quitting my job and with it my health insurance. With the new Obama-Care laws it’s federally required to have health insurance, so I’ll have to look into paying full-price and out-of-pocket for health insurance for awhile.
  • Living Expenses. A conservative estimate of what rent will cost, including a security deposit and first and last months rent, daily eating expenses, and other daily living expenses.
  • Car insurance. Depending on what type of vehicle I buy, I’ll need to decide whether or not to keep just Liability Coverage, which is what I have know, or get Full Coverage Insurance.
  • Travel Expenses. What it’s going to cost me to drive there, including the price of a vehicle tune-up before I leave, the price of gas driving there, and wear-and-tear to the vehicle.

5. Get Organized. Lastly, I’ll need to get organized. For starters, I’m going to upload any important paper documents to my hard drive and reduce as much paper clutter as possible.

I’m sure this list will grow and things will start to get more hectic as I get closer to the big move. If you’re also planning to make a move similar to my own, it’s important to have a plan to make your transition as smooth and successful as possible. You also don’t want to procrastinate (I’m horrible at this), otherwise you’ll be running around last minute trying finalize everything, adding unnecessary stress.

Do you have any suggestions for me? If so I’d love to hear them! Leave a comment or shoot me an email!



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