Life happens, and sometimes we have to do things we’re not comfortable with, and you never know where the road may take you. For example, you may one day have to relocate your family to another state due to work or unforeseen events.
Moving and starting all over again is not easy, and I believe the following relocation strategies will help a lot of people regardless of whether they are preppers or not.
It’s all about the location
The value of similar properties will often differ considerably depending on where those properties are located. The location will always dictate the price of a piece of a parcel of land or a structure. In fact, a lot of people look for desirable locations where they can start anew. But what makes a location desirable?
There are certain characteristics that make a location wanted by the vast majority of people that eventually increase the price of properties. Characteristics such as stable neighborhoods, access to quality healthcare, top-rated learning establishments, public transportation, scenic views, and access to shopping and entertainment.
However, for other folks, their ideal location would require safety, job opportunities, personal freedoms, population density, or perhaps the facilities which allow them to live a self-sufficient and sustainable life.
For preppers choosing a location can be a troublesome process because the place they pick should allow them to survive a natural or man-made disaster without unforeseen setbacks. They will always go for a location that can increase the survivability chance considerably. If you are a prepper and you will need to relocate in the foreseeable future, here are some things you need to do.
It all starts with a thorough research
In life, all the important decisions you make require an accurate assessment of facts and thorough research before putting things into motion. To make a solid decision, you need to have accurate information that will help you narrow the list of possible variables.
Here is what you need to consider:
Setting objectives and priorities – Start by clearly defining what you’re looking for and what you need. You will have to outline your objectives and priorities and keep them at the center of our research. You can add “the wants” as well, but they should not be prioritized over the needs.
Keep a clear head – Some will start researching with a bias of what they’ve heard or read, and they won’t find what they’re looking for if they do so. You should have no prejudgment and always look at everything with a fresh set of eyes.
Make sure the information you find is accurate – Most times, you will find conflicting and contradictory information during your research. All the information and data should be verified with multiple sources, and it’s healthy to have a dose of skepticism no matter what those sources may be.
Keep records of anything you find – You will have more than one option to choose from, and it’s recommended to keep a file for every option you’ve found. You will go back and forth to this information as you narrow down your list. Keep files by state, country, or area. All your findings should be organized from the start to avoid wasting time.
Arm yourself with patience – You will need to have patience and give yourself the time to thoroughly research every location. As you put all the things together, you will soon find out there are many unknowns you have to find the answer for. If you rush this process, you won’t be able to find these unknowns, and you will be sabotaging yourself.
You will be looking for the best location you can find, but I must warn you there is no such thing as the best location. Every place you find will have its pros and cons, and you need to navigate through all the options until you find something attractive for you.
Your particular needs, circumstances, and expectations are different than the needs of others. What may seem ideal for some would probably be the worst option for you and yours. That’s why I’ve listed here the most important categories you should consider when doing your research
In my opinion, this is a crucial factor because it will increase your chances of survival regardless of what crisis occurs. Being close to a largely populated area will make things much when all hell breaks loose. The more people are living in an area, the more man-made problems you will have to deal with.
Crime and safety
The crime rate affects the quality of life of a community, and the higher the crime rate, the higher the cost for the city and its community to keep things under control. Your security expenses and an increased police presence will just add more to the stress of daily living. Your insurance rate will go up for your property and vehicles, and some folks will have to get used to living in fear.
Research crime statistics and look for key indicators such as percentages for violent crimes and crimes per square mile. Always compare your findings with the national statistics to have a better understanding of the overall situation.
As a prepper, your ability to protect your property and your family need to be a top priority. It goes without saying that you should disconsider locations in states which restrict your ability to protect yourself. It’s better to know in advance about the laws dictating how and when you may deploy a firearm to deal with a self-defense situation. Learn about your legal duties if you are forced to use a firearm.
An area with a growing and thriving economy offers opportunities for financial success no matter your specific circumstances. Such an economy will have a more “select” community, but the downside is that many will pick a location with a thriving economy. This will lead to higher real estate costs, a large population density, traffic, and congestion. Not to mention that the cost of living will increase constantly.
Some manage to become self-sufficient no matter where they are located, but for most people, the need for a constant income is a permanent reality. While traditional jobs will always remain the most common and stable source of income, you should look for other options as well. Perhaps start your own business, or find something that allows you to work from home. If you plan on starting a home business, it’s recommended to research local regulations because each state/county may require different licenses and permits.
Cost of living
The cost of living in our country is ever-changing, and it greatly differs from one area to another. This is one factor you shouldn’t overlook because if you expect to have the same income in the foreseeable future, it will be harder and harder to cover the cost of your minimum requirements.
Things such as fuel, heating/cooling, food, utilities, taxes, insurances, etc., will add up in time. Compare the cost of living in various locations and pick the one it’s better suited for your family.
Weather and climate
Some prefer a cool climate while others a hot one. The climate in your location may be windy or calm, it may be dry or humid, and the quality of air or pollution may vary. These are things that matter to many, especially since they can affect their overall health.
I would recommend avoiding extremes, and you should always consider the length of the growing season if you plan on becoming self-sufficient. Rainfall, flooding, and other weather patterns shouldn’t be ignored as well if you plan to grow your own food.
The natural environment is a priority for me since I love to spend as much time as possible in the great outdoors. The overall health of the environment is a factor you should consider because there are many areas in this country that have been greatly affected by greedy corporations and their irresponsible actions.
The natural environment should be thriving in your location if you plan on growing food or raising livestock. It would be a good idea to research soil quality and find out which crops grow best in the area.
Water is an indisposable resource, and you need to figure out if you will rely on the public water system, a river, a stream, or perhaps if you need to build your own well and/or rainwater collection system. Find out where the public water comes from. Are the water sources exposed to drought? Are they safe and reliable? What will you do when the public water system fails? Do you have any alternative? Also, keep in mind that certain states have laws regulating the harvest of rainwater, and it might be illegal to collect rainwater.
Research the infrastructure, road conditions, commute times, traffic patterns, and how drivers in the area are rated or how traffic rules are enforced. Come city and states are famous for a high incidence of vehicle accidents, bad/aggressive drivers, and all of this will reflect in the auto insurance rate. You will probably have to pay more than you expect.
Some consider being close to an airport to be a great advantage, but I personally believe it brings more traffic, noise, pollution, and congestion than advantages. However, if you have to travel often, you’re probably willing to trade all of that for fast and easy access to the airport.
Suppose you have to build a life of self-reliance and sustainability; besides having the right skills, you also need to have access to proper resources. In such a case, it’s recommended to research the climate, geography, and availability of natural resources. You will need to find a location that provides plenty of wood, water, and game if you’re aiming for sustainability.
Healthcare and medical facilities
Access to quality healthcare should also be a priority because not everyone can become their own doctor. Make sure the location you pick provides access to quality hospitals, dentists, physicians, and other medical facilities.
For some, this may not seem like a high priority, but for others, depending on their overall medical condition, age, and genetic predispositions, this may be a crucial factor in deciding which location to pick. One thing remains certain; emergencies will always happen no matter if you plan for them or not.
Not everyone plans to homeschool their kids, and most folks are not up to the task. For example, a young family will look for a location with access to quality education, and they will research the local school districts, availability, percentage of certified teachers, technology and methodology the schools are using, grades and rankings, and also class sizes.
Some may need to have access to a wide array of public services, while others may see them as a burden. Since nothing is free in this country, the more services you get, the more (and sometimes higher) taxes you’ll have to pay.
You may want to research how reliable the power grid is (and look for a backup solution) or perhaps if you need to pay a monthly subscription for EMS or other services. Everything comes with a cost.
We are a nation of consumers, and even self-sufficient and independent folks will need to shop every now and then. Are you ok with driving long distances to buy the things you need, or do you require more convenient options? Also, remember that the travel distance the supply chain needs to cover is reflected in the price of the product. The more it travels to reach your destination, the more expensive it will be.
The average American family spends a big chunk of its budget on taxes. Almost everything we do is taxed “for the good of the nation,” and you have to determine what taxes you’re expected to pay and how you deal with this burden. Some states don’t have a state income tax, while others will impose an additional tax on top of the federal income taxes
This is a factor you need to consider if you plan to move to an area with a higher likelihood of natural disaster. Homeowner’s insurance, life and health insurance, and even auto insurance will cost more, and you will probably have to pay a premium to have everything covered.
Some states will offer a homestead exemption, and they may provide an exemption for the full value of your first residence and protect it from certain creditors, while others will provide too little or nothing at all.
Chances are you will not find that perfect location you’ve been dreaming of, and you need to prioritize the things that are most important for you and yours.
There is no perfect relocation plan, and you have to do your own research to find something that covers most of your needs. Every place will have advantages and disadvantages, and you need to make an accurate assessment before you relocate and have a fresh start.
Resources for preppers and survivalists: