For many students, graduation day is an exciting life milestone. It marks a time for a new beginning as you begin the next phase of life. And as exciting as it may be, it can also be a time filled with stressful decisions. Choosing where to live after college plays a big role in overall happiness, so it’s important for graduates to carefully consider their new home — which is not always as simple as following the job offering the biggest salary — and other factors for the next chapter. Read on to learn more about where to move after college.
Embrace Your Environment
Where you choose to live after life on campus lays the foundation for your continued development through your 20s and after. The location can have a significant impact on your social life, just as it did when you selected your college or university. Your exposure to arts, culture, and recreation will be vastly different if you choose to live in Seattle over Orlando. All cities and towns have their own personalities — artsy, youthful, sleepy, outdoorsy, environmentally conscious — the list goes on and on.
Finding a location that suits you and your personality is top priority when deciding where you want to be after receiving your diploma. And, it’s imperative that you start considering this big decision sooner rather than later. If you know you’re not a fan of the heat or the snow, then avoid cities that experience extreme weather. Or, if you love the water, then looking for a position along either coast or around major lakes is a good idea. Narrow your living options, and then apply for jobs in those areas to keep your plans strategic.
The Happiness Factor
It’s no secret that where you live influences how you live, and how you live affects your happiness level. If you love the theater and want to make that part of your weekend routine, then living in a city that doesn’t have one may leave you feeling unfulfilled. Or, if collegiate football is still a passion, then moving to a city that is part of the Big 10 would be a great choice. Wherever that sweet spot is, know that it plays a huge role in your life post-graduation. How you spend your time in your new neighborhood plays a major factor in your day-to-day mood.
On the flip side, if your dream job happens to be in a location that isn’t on your list, that’s something to consider, too. Perhaps the job will bring you the happiness you desire and the location won’t carry as much weight. In this case, the passion for the position overrides the location. The key is to choose whichever path makes you the happiest.
Also, it’s important to remember some of the more tactical considerations for life after college:
Cost of Living
Chances are you probably aren’t making the big bucks at your first job. Be realistic with your research, and consider various types of apartments and housing options that fit your budget. Maybe you need a roommate to help split the monthly rent, for example. In big cities with a high cost of living, you’re likely living in a smaller space even if you are earning a higher salary than you would elsewhere.
Cost of Commute
Will you drive to the office? Take the subway? Local bus? Your daily commute should play a role in where you decide to live. If you’ve put in a long day, do you really want to drive an hour home in traffic? Or, do you prefer to take public transportation instead of guzzling gas on your own? These decisions are yours to make, and they impact both your time and money.
Proximity to Family and Friends
Are you a homebody or independent adventurer? Rather be close to your friends and family than not? The distance you put between you and your inner circle is yours to determine. You will have opportunities to create new relationships if you move to a new city where you know very few people; but you may long for those closest back home. Spend time thinking about who is important to you and how easily you can travel home to see them, should you decide to move far away.
As you search for your new abode, let CORT Furniture Rental help fill your space. You may walk into an empty apartment, but CORT is there to make it feel like home with furniture delivered to you and picked up when you’re ready to leave for your next big life step.