What You Need to Know Before Moving to California
Home to Hollywood, redwoods, Silicon Valley, the Lakers, sunny skies and much more, California is place well over 35 million people are proud to call home. Its spectacular scenery, booming tech sector, diverse population, world class universities and dreamy weather make it a beautiful state to call home. While some Americans stay away from the Golden state because they view it as a high-cost, congested place to live, California still draws newcomers, particularly from other large, high-cost states such as New York, Texas, Arizona, Washington and Florida. It’s not only millennials heading to San Francisco for high-tech jobs; California’s population grew by over 5% between 2010 and 2015.
If you’re moving to California or considering moving to California, here are 10 things you need to know:
- You’re going to need a vehicle. With the exception of those living in scenic yet pricey San Francisco, most Californians need a car to get around. After all, California is a vast state and in many cities and towns, public transit options are limited. Depending on where you live in California, traffic can be a regular (sometimes infuriating!) part of life. LA has a particularly bad rep for traffic and has some of the most congested roads and freeways in the entire country. So make sure you have a comfortable vehicle, set it to your go-to radio station and stock it with your favorite treats and music.
- Top notch higher education. Consider taking advantage of the in-state tuition in California’s state university system. California has the biggest public university system in the US. While it’s true that in-state tuition prices have gone up over the years, they are still lower than what non-residents of the state pay and offer great value at some top schools, such California State University in Sacramento and University of California – Berkeley.
- Be prepared for high taxes. There’s no way to sugarcoat the fact that incomes taxes in California are high. High earners can expect to pay a large amount of their earnings to the state government. On a positive note, however, property taxes are below average.
- The nature-lovers paradise. For outdoor enthusiasts and lovers of nature, California is a wonderland. There is no shortage of picturesque places to visit, including a number of beautiful national and state parks such as Death Valley National Park, Joshua Tree National Park and Channel Islands National Park. You can hike mountains, walk through forests, enjoy beaches, ski, surf, swim and camp. So invest in a great pair of walking shoes, sunglasses and a water canteen and enjoy the bounty that Mother Nature has to offer.
- There is a strong Northern California vs. Southern California rivalry. Be aware that when you move to California, you’ll basically have to “pick sides” between the Northern and Southern part of the state. Northern California (NorCal) and Southern California (SoCal) have distinct cultures and like to tease one another. You’ll also have to consider your weather preference. NorCal is cooler and rainier whereas SoCal is sunnier and drier.
- Brush up on your Spanish. As of July 2014, nearly 15 million Latinos live in California. Areas with an especially large Spanish speaking population include the LA metropolitan area, the California-Mexico border countries of San Diego and Imperial, and the San Joaquin Valley. If you don’t speak Spanish fluently, it is worthwhile to learn the basics of the language. This is especially true if you’re moving to Southern California. While you generally don’t have to worry about being turned down for a job because you aren’t bilingual. Learning Spanish will open doors to opportunities and relationships you wouldn’t otherwise have.
- Farm fresh produce. If you move to California, you’ll be living in one of the United States’ major agricultural hubs. Sunny California produces much of the produce that the US and many other countries rely on. Californians produce huge quantities of fruit, vegetables and nuts. It’s no wonder California is known for being the home of healthy living and farm-to-table eating. Residents of California can spend weekends driving by California farmland, visiting vibrant local farmer’s markets, and checking out restaurants with menus that the boast fresh, local produce California is famous for.
- <Cheers to great wine. Attention wine lovers! Did you know California is the biggest producer of wine in the US? Chardonnay is the most popular grape planted in California, with close to 95,000 planted acres. Cabernet Sauvignon comes in second place with almost 80,000 acres planted. Merlot and white Zinfandel are also very popular. Red wine remains the most popular shade of wine produced in California.
- Friends and family will want to come visit. The Golden State is beautiful and has so much to offer as a vacation destination, from great weather and wineries to Disneyland and Universal Studios. To prepare for the inevitable guests you’ll receive, ensure that you have a nice guest bedroom or, at the very least, invest in a really comfortable sofabed.
- The place where tech and entrepreneurship blossom. California is home to Silicon Valley, the nickname for the southern portion of the San Francisco Bay Area in the northern part of the state. Many of the world’s largest high-tech corporations like Apple, Google and Facebook call Silicon Valley home. Silicon Valley is also home to thousands of startups and accounts for one-third of all the venture capital investment in the US. Millennial’s interested in high-tech innovation, entrepreneurship and scientific development are proud to call Silicon Valley home.
- Earthquakes are part of life. While earthquakes happen from time to time and you need to be prepared for them, the majority are tiny rumblings that you barely notice. While you don’t have to spend your days worrying about when the “Big One” will hit, it’s good to get into the mindset of ensuring that your possessions are secured as safely as possible. For example, be sure to use earthquake-safe wall hangings and push objects to the back of your shelves. If you have children who didn’t grow up on the West Coast, prepare them for earthquake drills.
If you have decided to make the move to California, congratulations! Here are some helpful resources you’ll need to make your move a success.
Whatever the reason for your move, in order to make your transition to life in California seamless, you need to do some research in advance. To begin preparing for you move, browse through the resources below. The more knowledge you have, the more confident and comfortable you will feel when you arrive at your new home.
- California Homes for Sale
- California Neighborhoods
- General California Information
- Government Website
- California Weather and Forecast
- California Taxes
- California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
- California Transportation Department
- California Emergency Management Agency
Hopefully you have a clearer picture of what California has to offer and what considerations you need to make before moving to the Golden State. But the first, most important step in your moving process is finding a reputable long distance moving company with expertise in executing moves to the West Coast.
Moving from New Jersey to California? Find the Right Professional Mover.
Like any long distance move, moving across the country to California can be difficult because it involves a lot of logistical planning. You need to have the time and peace of mind necessary to tackle the many tasks on your “To Do” list. Moving with reputable movers like All Jersey Moving & Storage will alleviate some pressure by giving you peace of mind that your belongings will reach your new home safely and on schedule.
In association withNational Van Lines, All Jersey Moving & Storage now offerslong distance moving from New Jersey to California. With our movers and logistics coordinators, you won’t have to be concerned about where your furniture and belongings are, who is moving them and when you will see them again.
By utilizing our network of skilled movers and well-maintained equipment, we are able to provide superior moving services. When you hire the All Jersey Moving & Storage team to execute your California to New Jersey or New Jersey to California move, you can expect a delivery that reflects our reputation for quality service. We handle your long distance move with the same attention, care, and expertise that our local moving customers have grown to expect.
Here are some of the advantages of utilizing All Jersey Moving & Storage’s long distance moving services:
- We provide consumers with honest estimates - no-surprises!
- Our professional staff has the experience and training necessary to execute your move safely. You can expect award-winning service.
- We have the late-model equipment necessary to safely move your furniture and valuables.
- If your move is booked through National Van Lines at least 10 business days in advance of the scheduled load date, we guarantee that our truck will arrive on the scheduled loading day. If we are even one day late picking up a shipment of over 6000 lbs. or more, we'll pay you $500 for your inconvenience.
- We offer piano moving and specialty moving services, so you can have peace of mind that your instrument and antiques are in expert hands.
Once you have chosen your preferred long distance movers to execute your move to California, book them immediately. Highly rated professional moving companies book up quickly, and you don’t want to be forced to move on an inconvenient date or have to book a second-rate mover. The All Jersey Moving & Storage moving time tries to accommodate client’s scheduling needs whenever possible, but your safest bet is still to book in advance.
After securing you movers of choice, it’s time to think about the action steps you will need to take to allow your movers to do the best possible job. Our experienced long distance movers have shared
Moving from New Jersey to California or California to New Jersey? Contact All Jersey Moving & Storage for a free moving quote.