Category Archives: Finance

How to Move Across Country

I have moved from the Midwest to Dallas, back to the Midwest, and black to Dallas again. Below I will detail how I did it including mistakes and things I have learned. If you are looking to make a big move, keep reading.

DECIDE:

A decision has to be made. The old saints used to say that to follow Jesus you need a made up mind. I will say to follow your dreams, you need a made up mind. Nothing happens when you waiver. The bible says,

“An indecisive man is unstable in all his ways.” James 1:8-9 HCSB

Decide where  and when to move – You need a location. Are you moving with your job or will you be looking for a new one? All of this will factor in with your schedule to move.  I decided to move to Dallas after visiting a friend. It was sunny and warm. Chicago experienced a crazy blizzard that year. I was sick of the cold. Just like that, I decided to move. I was able to transfer with my current job. I gave away my limited furniture, bought a plane ticket, and was out. This was in 2007.

When I moved to back to the Midwest is 2015, I also transferred with my then employer. This time I packed up my car and drove 18 hours. I moved in with a relative until I could find a place.

When I returned to Dallas this year, I started a new job. I had flown out previously to interview and find a place to live. Once I received the job offer, I had a moving window of approximately two weeks. I had started my research into moving options months prior so pulling the trigger on the move was less daunting.

START SAVING:

Create a budget to get concrete numbers on how much you make and what your expenses are. Trim non-essentials like gym memberships, cable, eating out. Place all of that money in an account. You can never save too much. Below I detail some of the costs to expect.

Also, plan your move, if possible, around financial windfalls, such as, bonuses, tax refunds, reimbursements.

HOW TO MOVE YOUR STUFF:

Material trapping can be just that, a trap, if you let them. My prior moves I really just gave much of my stuff away. This last move, I had acquired quality furniture that would cost too much to replace. I conducted a cost comparison of different moving options.

  1. Moving Companies. A moving company will pack, load, and drive your belongings from one location to your destination. The price is a factor of distance and size of home moved (how many rooms/how much furniture). The lowest quote I received for moving a two bedroom apartment was $5,000.
  2. UPS . UPS has a Pack and Ship service in which someone will come to your home, evaluate how much you have to move, and provide a quote. I was given an estimate of $3,000.
  3. PODS. PODS is a company that provides shipping containers. A driver comes to your home and drops off a container. You load it. PODS comes back at a scheduled time to pick up the container and take it to their facility. They transport the container to your destination. You unpack it. At a scheduled time, PODS picks up the empty container. The price depends on the size container and distance transported. A container 8x8x7 from Indiana to Dallas was around $1400.

Other Costs:

  1. Loaders/Movers: If you don’t have friends to help you move, you need to factor in the cost of packers/loaders. The PODS moving referrals were pretty pricey. I was able to find loaders for around $89 bucks and hour.
  2. Living Arrangements: If you are purchasing, you will have to pay for flights to visit homes. If you are renting, you will need a deposit amount and first month’s rent.
  3. Flights, Hotel, and Rental Car: I had to travel to Dallas to interview. I also stayed a few days to view places to live. I caught a deal on a flight,  used my points with the hotel for a free day. Also, had some points with the rental car company.
  4. Incidentals: Once you move in you will need to buy cleaning supplies, produce, etc.

REST:

You will need to rest. Take some vacation time. Packing, moving, and unpacking is TOUGH. You will need some time to recuperate.

Below is a video of my PODS experience.

Don’t Call It A Comeback. . .My Money Was Wack And. . .

Piggybank
 
. . .life just happens.

I am writing again with a new purpose. I may change the theme of this blog to document my financial recovery.

Everyone is having a hard time financially but I am learning that you can choose to control the ride. My financial upringing was to hide under a rock until the bill collectors gave up. This is so not what to do. I have since learned that confronting your situation, creating a vision for yourself, and making plan to get past it is the right path to follow.

I created a vision board a few weeks ago. It's just a white canvans with some pictures and words from magazines pasted on it to illustrate what I want for myself in my life. In the bottom right hand corner I have the passage of the bible that tells the story of Abraham and Isaac on Mount Moriah.

It's Genesis 22:9-14 if you would like to read it.

This story just tells me that you can be doing all you know to do to be obedient to God's word and the answer is just out of your scope of vision. An angel had to call to Abraham to get him to change his focus from the sacrifice to the provision.

Jehovah Jireh – God is my provider.

I had prayed and prayed but God has shown me the path to provision. Some lessons learned.

1. Create and follow a budget

2. You can and will live off less

3. Shop for value and LEARN TO COOK your meals

4. Be faithful in giving to God

5. Take care of the things you have so that they last longer

I wish I had learned this lesson sooner. Perhaps I would be further along in my vision board but alas I am here now.

As I prepare to start work, I want every dime to be accounted for. I included every conceivable expense in my budget. I prayed over it. God will bless it. It is up to me to be faithful.