Finding the right place to live and settle down takes careful consideration. There are a few important questions to ask yourself during this process. Are you looking for a quiet, small town where everybody knows your name, or a big city filled with a great night-life? Do you want a medium-sized city, where you can keep some anonymity, but still attend an occasional block party? Do you even want to move to another city?
Nowadays, people tend to go wherever their work is, settle in and make do. It’s possible to be happy and even very happy on very little, according to “Thrive”, but most of us need the creature comforts–a place to nest.
Several things factor into this and like REALTOR says, “location, location, location” is a big part. Do you want to have neighbors who can see into your backyard? How close do you want to be with your neighbors? Are you looking for that perfect place that reminds you of your childhood? A lot of us use fond memories from childhood to guide us, but remember: childhood memories are idealized and who you are now is not the same person you were then. Studies have shown that we tend to remember the high points and the low points, but not the little things that comprise the majority of our day to day life. Keep that in mind when you consider moving to the neighborhood you remember so fondly as a child.
There are major factors that can help you determine where you should live and these are also factors that are essential in boosting your ability to live a happy, thriving life.
How close to your work do you want to live? You spend a lot of time at the office (at least one third of your day, which makes it an important factor in your search. Do you mind commuting or would you rather walk to work? Do you enjoy eating lunch out or does a home cooked meal in a special container make you smile? Most importantly, how do you feel about your work? Do you drag your feet in the morning, sighing over and over again as you get ready to leave or do you wake up and wonder what’s going on there and hurry so you won’t miss anything?
Taking into account the convenience of work life is a big part of considering where you want to live.
Social life. Is it essential for you to live close to friends, and be able to meet every day? Or is it enough to be able to talk with them on Facebook? If you feel the need to get together with friends and family at least once a week, choose a place that is central to them, so you can hop in your car and meet up at your favorite restaurant or movie theatre. If that’s important to you, it becomes a big factor in choosing where to live.
One of the biggest considerations is your financial status. In “Thrive”, Dan Buettner makes note of a 100 year-old woman who lives in a shack behind her family’s house and considers herself blessed by what she has. Most people would rather have four walls and a roof over their heads. Happiness is a relative term. Do you want to adopt a savings/spending strategy to allow yourself to choose the type of place you’ll be happiest? Ask yourself what makes you happier: saving or spending? That will lead you in the direction you need to go to choose a place that fits you both spiritually and financially.
Your sense of self is a major factor in choosing where you live. How do you see yourself living? Do you want that loft that offers a great view or a gated community? Do an inner self-check on the happiness factor. Will where you choose to live bring about inner-happiness, or an openness with others that makes you want to give back to the community and make you feel gratitude for what you have? Will that gratitude extend to the people who have helped you along the way?
Choosing where to live is a basic tenet of living a happy, longer life. Traditionally economists in other countries measure happiness by an individual’s fiscal stability, but it’s never the ‘magic bullet’ that brings true happiness.
Where you live is one of the most important factors in how happy you are. Economic freedom, the possibility of finding the job of your dreams, the lack of tension in your neighborhood and a government that is both fair and stable are elements that call to us. We want a place where we can have the opportunity to grow, to feel safe and to enjoy the fruits of our labor, and for that, you’ll have to do a little research.
Research is the cornerstone. Even if you can’t move to Mayberry and find the job that allows you economic freedom or the ability to spend time with family and friends, you can look to different areas around your current location. Compare what you have to what you want and then it’s time to start planning.
Happiness is the key to a longer life. Even if you can’t move to one of the Blue Zones in Dan Buettner’s book, you can strive make the place you are a Blue Zone.
Carmela Jacobs is an ethical California Real Estate Broker with over two decades of experience helping hundreds of families make the right move. As a full-time Realtor she specializes in relocation, homes sales, luxury listings, hyper-local markets (Ventura County, Los Angeles County), and Global investors. Whether you're buying or selling, Carmela will handle your business with the utmost respect, professionalism and discretion. Carmela's mission is not only to SELL your home--QUICKLY--but to do what's best for your bottom line; that means selling your home for MORE.. When experience matters, take advantage of Carmela's 23+ years of working knowledge in the Lending and Real Estate industry.
Having earned referrals and trust from her clients, Carmela credits her success to mutual respect, staying on top of the latest real estate trends, innovative marketing campaigns, and technology. In addition to her knowledge and understanding of the local market, Carmela maintains a strong nationwide/global network, and utilizes it to sell or find a dream home for her clientele.
Certifications: E-certified®2, Relocation Broker Certified, HAFA Specialist, New Casa Certified Referral Realtor.