More and more Americans are leaving big cities for the benefit of small(er) town life. The desire for bigger living spaces and the opportunity to take part in outdoor activities that cost less are key driving factors. City life is undoubtedly stressful — the sheer volume of people, energy, and bustle adds a layer of freneticism to everything — which is not for everyone.

As a residential moving company, we’ve helped many clients settle into their new homes. Having said that, moving from a big city to a small town takes some time to get used to. Our tips can help with the transition.

#1. Find the Best Neighborhood to Live in

One of many reasons why there’s been such an exodus of people moving from a big city to a small town is affordability. Lower costs of living and a higher quality of life are major draw cards. Reading blogs, news, reviews, and apartment listing websites can help you find the best and more affordable neighborhood for you.

#2. Meet the Locals

The transition from a big city to a small town can sometimes feel a little lonely. Volunteering in the community or joining a gym or hobby-related class is the easiest way to get to know people. Another way to meet locals is to initiate a meet-up with friends of friends who can acquaint you with the neighborhood.

#3. Be Prepared to Socialize More Often

Everyone knows everyone in small towns. The pace of life is slower, and people tend to socialize more often. While you don’t have to attend every event, it’s an excellent way to get to know people when you first move. Over time, you’ll find friends who share the same values and interests.

#4. Find Out about the Living Costs

move to a small town

Before you move to a small town; you should research living costs. Generally, home prices, rent, groceries, and consumer goods are cheaper than in major metropolitan areas. You might decide to rent a bigger property or scale down and save money. Either way, you won’t know what your options are unless you’ve compared big-city vs. small-town living costs. 

#5. Be Prepared for Lifestyle Changes 

Should I move to a small town? Is it a good idea? It is, but it also comes with significant lifestyle changes:

  • Smaller labor market: Those living in big cities will always have more job opportunities than in smaller towns. If you’re working remotely or are moving for your job, this won’t be an issue. However, moving is expensive, so it’s worthwhile researching career growth opportunities if you’re moving out of the city.
  • Less to do: Things like groceries and entertainment options may be more limited in a smaller town. While not the end of the world, it warrants consideration if you’re used to and enjoy big-city life. 
  • Fewer medical specialists: If you have a medical condition that requires extensive treatment or care, you’ll want to make sure there are adequate medical services available. However, if you’re in good health and only visit the doctor for annual check-ups, then you should be fine.
  • Slower Wi-Fi: Some small towns don’t have the infrastructure in place for fast fiber optic internet connections. Generally, households in more rural areas pay more for broadband and are likely to receive slower connection speeds. 
  • Limited transportation: Unlike big cities, small towns may not have large enough populations to support subway systems. You’ll most likely need a car to get around. 
  • Fewer education opportunities: Educational opportunities after high school may not be as diverse in a smaller town. Those who have kids and are moving from a big city to a small town might choose to live closer to a big city, so their children can attain a good tertiary education.

#6. Check Out Local Influencers and Bloggers

Social media is the best place to find out about local events, activity recommendations, and small-town living tips. You can learn a lot from following local influencers and bloggers, as they’re usually clued up on what’s happening. Once you’ve moved, you can also contact them directly for recommendations.

#7. Buy a Car If You Don’t Have One

As we mentioned before, moving out of the city means less reliable or non-existent public transport. Even if you’re working remotely, we highly recommend buying a car to get around. Owning one offers convenience and the freedom to get up and go whenever you want.

#8. Try the Local Food Out

Part of the fun of moving to a new place is immersing yourself in the culture, including the food. Surprisingly, food offers an easy way to strike up a conversation with someone. Finding out about the local cuisine can provide you with great recommendations for places to eat and drink. It’s also a great way to introduce yourself to new people.

#9. Spend More Time Outdoors

Spending 120 minutes outdoors per week significantly increases well-being. Finding solitude in a big city can be a challenge. In a small town, it's often right outside your doorstep. On any given day, you can hike, bike, jog or walk in the fresh air. For many, living in a small town permits a more active lifestyle.

#10. Get Ready for a Slower Pace of Life

For city slickers, the slower pace of small town life may come as a shock, even if they desire a less hectic life. Doing research will help understand what to expect, though you’ll still need to give yourself time to adjust to your new lifestyle, home, and routines when moving from the city to a small town.

Let Expert Movers Help You

Now it's possible to move to a small town, keep your job, and earn a great living, minus the stress of living in a big city. For new families, retirees, or those who just want a break  — small-town living offers plenty of perks.

Wondering how to move to a small town? With expert help, of course! Whether you’re moving on from town to town or from a large city to a rural town, our Illinois professional movers are here to make the process as easy as possible. Get a free quote today.