Moving without a job lined up?

Don’t be scared to move to your dream city just because you don’t have a job yet. It’s very possible to make the transition successfully and with little risk. You just need to know what you’re doing. This article will lay it all out for you.

Moving to a new place without a job is easy if you have: (1) a moving budget, (2) temporary housing, and (3) a plan for finding work.

1. The Budget

To make sure a move is financially possible, you need to set up a moving budget:

First, determine whether you have enough money to cover the move itself. Moving on your own is probably your cheapest option, and should cost you no more than a couple hundred dollars. Learn more about how to move alone.

Second, make sure you will be making enough money to cover your monthly rent and bills.

If you don’t have a job, though, you can’t really plan on having a set income.  Therefore, you need to have some money saved up to fund your move and a few months of living expenses while you search for a job.  When deciding whether you have enough money saved up, here are the costs that need to be considered:

  • Moving itself
  • Rent & rental deposit
  • Groceries and household essentials
  • Insurance – health, auto
  • Gas and transportation
  • Parking
  • Utilities
  • Livelihood expenses – unless you don’t plan on ever going out for dinner, a movie or a drink.
  • Loans/credit/other bills

Do the math and figure out how much you will owe over the course of three months.  If you have enough saved up to cover that, then moving without a job is a realistic possibility.

2. Temporary Housing

Jump on Craigslist or a local rental agency’s website and notice all the apartment vacancies in your price range.  Now, throw those all out because there is a good chance that they will hurt you in the end.

The vast majority of advertised apartment rentals require a year’s lease.  For a person moving without a job lined up, that’s like tying yourself to an anchor before going for a swim.  If for some reason you can’t find a job in the area, there’s little chance that you will be able to fulfill a full year’s lease.  Then you will need to either locate a new tenant to join your lease or be on the hook for months of rent.  Fortunately, there are other options:

  • Short-term leases – If you know how many months you can survive a job search, you can look for a short-term lease for than amount of time.  Some rental agencies offer three or six month leases.
  • Month-to-month – Month-to-month leases are leases that are guaranteed only for a month.  They can be cancelled with a month’s notice to the renter or landlord.  Month-to-month leases offer great flexibility.
  • Subleases – Subleases are leases between a person on a lease and another person, such as you. They’re great for movers because they are short-term, often come furnished, and carry cheaper rates.
  • Extended stay – Extended stay rooms are very similar to hotel rooms, except they are offered for longer periods of time and for generally lower prices.  They are good ways to guarantee yourself a room and amenities without tying yourself to a lease.

3. The Job Search

Searching for a job in a new city can be tough. However, if you are organized and have a set plan of action, your search will be less painful. Usually, this requires having multiple job targets, recruiters, and connections.

  • Placement agencies – Conduct some Internet searches for placement agencies that fill jobs in your desired field(s).  Their services are usually free for job searchers.
  • Fellow alumni – Talk with your college or university and see if they can point you to some alumni working in the city you are moving to.  Just that little connection can help spark an interview.
  • Craigslist and the Internet – There are countless websites that advertise job openings, including Monster, Craiglist and Indeed.  Spend an hour or so every day checking these sites and applying to positions.
  • The cover letter – Sending off a cover letter and resume to a company that you want to work for is the best way to get a job with them.  Even if they don’t have any immediate openings, should one come up in a month or two, they might remember you.
  • Volunteer – In your free time, try to volunteer in your field of choice.  This can be a great way to meet people and network.
  • Pick up a part-time job – Getting a part-time job as a bar back or the likes can be a good way to help stop the bleeding of your bank account. A part-time job won’t interfere with your larger job search, but it can bring in some helpful paychecks, keep you sane, and introduce you to new people.

If you try all or most of these, there is a good chance that you will land a job within your required time frame.

To reiterate, moving to a new city without a job is not easy.  Finding a job in a new city requires time and effort.  However, with the right planning and work ethic, you can pull it off.  At worst, if you fail, you can ensure that you will not end up broke and owing somebody money.

Check here to learn how to find an apartment in the city you’re moving to.


Related Articles
Moving Out: Budgeting Your Move and Beyond
Apartment Hunting from a Different City
How to Move Alone