Whether you’re moving to a home to be closer to your workplace or you fell in love with the city after visiting, you’d want to make it your home sweet home as soon as possible. Unfortunately, familiarising yourself with your new neighbourhood is easier said than done. Just like the moving process itself, getting used to your new environment and everything else is also a process. It might take some time, but there are several ways you can try to get adjusted more quickly.
If you’re still making arrangements with a professional removalist or you have just arrived in your new residence, here are some of the things that you can do to familiarise yourself with your new neighbourhood:
Familiarise yourself with rules and guidelines
Even before you arrive in your new residence, start familiarising yourself with the rules and guidelines in your new community. Include this in your research, but if the information is not available online or the information is too limited, consider contacting the council or visiting the area to learn more about its culture, tradition, laws, and policies from locals. This is also a good opportunity to find out if there are any rules you need to know about moving into the area such as transferring pet records and getting permits for parking the moving vehicle, etc.
Find local resources
Whether you’re taking a break from unpacking and organising your belongings or you’re going out for a quick relaxing walk, take note of the locations of local resources that you pass by along the way. If there are none, find time to locate the nearest grocery, hardware, and pharmacy. This way, you’ll know where to find essential items in case you need additional tools to do basic repairs or if you need to restock your pantry or refrigerator. Consider looking for nearby clinics, gyms, and other facilities that will support your lifestyle and the needs of your family.
Check online community
Nowadays, it is quite common for communities to have an online presence. Whether it’s a dedicated website or a Facebook page, leaders and members of the community are maximising different platforms to share important information about the community. If you don’t have much time to explore the place yet, go online and try looking for community notice boards and websites dedicated to your area.
Joining Facebook groups dedicated to your community will allow you to be in the loop about current events and updates about the community without having to step outside and mingle with others. These groups are also good sources of information about local businesses, sales, and job opportunities.
Meet your neighbours
Once you’re done organising your belongings (or at least the essentials) and creating a comfortable place in your new residence, allot some time to meet your neighbours. This is not a requirement, but knowing the people around will help in making a new place more comfortable for you.
You can opt to introduce yourself to your closest neighbours or mingle with those who are attending local events such as the farmer’s market or through events organised by the school attended by your children. Whilst it’s tempting to not get to know anyone for a peaceful life, having someone you can count on in your new place is very helpful, especially during emergencies.
If you have school-age children, try to get to know the parents of the students they befriend. Spending some time with them can help you get to know the place better and be up to date with school-related matters, as well as local school traditions and practices you and your children must participate in.
Explore the city and nearby attractions
No matter what reasons you may have for moving to a new home, exploring your new city is one of the most exciting activities that you can look forward to. You can schedule explorations for weekends or during your free time after unpacking your belongings. If you have a lot of items to unpack and things get overwhelming, you can go out for a quick drive or walk around the area to locate nearby restaurants, cafes, parks, and bars where you can unwind.
As you’re starting to settle into your new environment, consider driving around the city (on your own or with your family) and visiting nearby attractions that pique your interest. Depending on how much free time you have, you might also want to visit local museums and other cultural events to learn more about the culture, traditions, and practices in your new home. You can also look for activities related to your hobbies or interest to increase the level of comfort and make the new city feel like home.
When you visit local restaurants, cafes, and bars, try conversing with other regular customers or the owners if they have time for a quick chat. Like the other steps above, this will help you gain more valuable and accurate information. If the encounter is comfortable enough, consider asking for recommendations on places to visit in your new city or attractions in surrounding areas.