As more and more people become disillusioned with city life, there is an exodus moving to the countryside. Farmland, sunrises over fields. Treetops, a yard for your kids or pets to play in. It sounds idyllic, right? There are a few things you should take into consideration to make sure you’re set up for success before moving to a rural home. Here are our best tips for moving from the city to a rural area.
Make sure you know what you’re renting or buying – every detail
Just because that sweet tractor was there during the walk-through doesn’t necessarily mean it’s included. Go through the details of your contract with a fine-toothed comb. If something isn’t included, ask if it could be. Will you need a snowplow to maintain the road? Sometimes the departing residents may be willing to include the elements that you like right in the contract to save themselves the trouble of moving them.
Secure title insurance on the property
Unfortunately, some farmlands have been exposed to toxic chemicals. The first step is to check the title! If it has been tested for contamination, this should be clearly stated and explained. Otherwise, buying title insurance will protect you in the unfortunate event that there is some issue with the property that makes it unlivable. Let’s just hope you never need it.
Find your local resources
The further you are from a major town or city, the more important it is to know who you can rely on in an emergency. It’s not always clear how to find nearby local technicians, so get to know your neighbors. First and foremost, and ask them about local resources. Often, rural areas have a resident livestock vet, handyman, and so on that aren’t necessarily listed in the phonebook or online. Make a visit to the town offices and start to become a familiar face. While you’re there, ask for phone numbers and contact information for any local services: medical, fire, and so on.
Keep lighting available
It gets dark beyond the land of streetlights, so be sure you’re prepared with flashlights and safety lighting to help you navigate the dark nights. Motion sensor lighting can get tripped easily if there are a lot of animals around, so choose your locations carefully!
Have reliable transportation, and know how to service it
In rural areas, it isn’t uncommon to meet dirt roads, potholes, and other rugged conditions. Your slick city car probably won’t cut it. So, be sure to choose a vehicle with adequate clearance. If you know you’ll be driving lots of dirt roads, opt for something with all-wheel drive. Nothing says “I just moved here from the city” like a car stuck in the mud.
The weather out in the countryside can get real, and you won’t just be able to duck into the next coffee shop. Before buying a house and moving to a rural area, make sure you have clothing that’s up for the job. A good raincoat for warmer months and warm parka for the winter, rain pants and snow pants, boots for mud and snow, you get the point. Being prepared is the key to enjoying life out there!
Keep an extra tank of gasoline at home
If the nearest gas station is fifteen minutes away, you might end up stuck running on E. Keep an extra tank at home in an approved gasoline canister, and you’ll never have to make the nerve-wracking trip while praying you’ll make it up that final hill.
Learn how to live with the animals
Bears, deer, raccoons, possums — when these are your closest neighbors, you need to learn how to live harmoniously. To start, keep your trash contained and secured, fence your garden well, and don’t leave any pet food outside. This will ensure that you and your neighbors get off on the right foot.