There is no doubt about it, buying a new home and moving international is a big deal! Especially if you are planning on emigrating to a completely different country, so it goes without saying it is definitely a sensible idea to thoroughly research the area you plan to move to before you get there. This way you’ll avoid any unwanted hiccups that could be hard to get out of once you have planted your roots in new soils overseas. It is important to take into account your own needs but also your families needs when investigating schools in the area, crime rates and other factors that will affect the family’s transition to the new area. This guide will help to make that chore a much less daunting task by highlighting what type of information you need to look for but also inform you of the tools you can use to make things easier.
Visit your potential new home and neighbourhood to investigate for yourself.
This is an invaluable way to really get a feel for the community you will possibly be moving to as it gives you a chance to examine your surroundings first-hand. Don’t be afraid to strike up conversation with the locals and remember that no question is a silly one. This is an opportunity for you to determine what type of people live there, if it’s a young community with kids for your children to make friends with, what the houses are like and any other specifics you want to know! While you’re there, visit the local shop and purchase a newspaper (if its written in a language you can read). This is another fab way to get a rich insight into the local community and also find out what’s making the headlines in your new local area.
Utilise the World Wide Web to its full research potential.
The internet is huge and has completely changed the way we live our lives, holding millions upon millions of websites with a massive amount of information and data at your disposal, so use it wisely! Look up your potential neighbourhoods council website to find out information that will apply to you should you choose to live there such as; community services, housing, environmental and health services, town planning, building control and much more.
www.moving.com is a great website for finding out more detailed information such as viewing school reports, comparing neighbourhood guides to see if maybe a slightly different location is better suited to you and also finding out demographic information.
NationMaster.com is an ideal resource for those who are thinking about moving house as it compiles data from hundreds of sources to produce maps and graphs on a wide range of statistics relevant to you. You can find out anything from obesity to crime rates in countries and cities all over the world.
www.iss.edu is the International Schools Service, which has the extremely useful resource of a directory to fully list all schools around the world. It is important to know that you will have a lot of choice when choosing where to send your children to school not just for your own peace of mind but so that the kids can feel happy about it as well. From this long list of schools you can then visit their own individual websites to find out more about how they work and what they specialise in.
walkscore.com is an absolutely fantastic resource for anyone wanting to find out more in depth information about the location they are moving to. Consider what you value in your lifestyle? Eating out on the weekends? Are you keen to keep up your sporting hobbies? Walk Score enables you to view neighbourhood restaurants, coffee shops, grocery stores, schools, parks and much more that are all located near your possible new home. You can also get a commute report and see options for getting around by car, bus, bike and foot!
Test out the transport for yourself.
Visit your potential neighbourhood and spend a day using the public transport available to you in that area, you could also drive the route you would go to take the kids to school or you to work etc. This will give you a good picture of how long it will take you to go about your daily routine, using the subway, trains and buses so you know exactly what to expect. From this you can get a good grasp of costs, routes to take, timetables and overall timings.