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How much lead time do you need to find a house in a new state?

Choosing a house while you’re still living in another state? It can be done, especially if you give yourself time. How much lead time do you need to look for a house in a new city? It depends on the market and inventory of the type of house you want. But these tips and insights can help you get started on your out-of-state quest for your new home, while feeling pretty darn good about your next steps.

Visualize what you want from your new home

What are your must-haves and deal-breakers in a house? As with any house-hunting mission, it starts with finding your focus. Make a list and spend time searching online listings in your new locale, so you get a good feel for what’s available in your price range.

Focus on community fact-finding

The community you live in is everything, and to help you narrow it down, let the data do the talking. Check news sites to learn what’s happening in that part of the world. For your top communities, spend time on sites like to get the scoop on the school system. The Urban Institute is packed with interactive maps and data to give you an overall picture of your new state’s economy, educational system and other pertinent details. Finally, contact the community’s chamber of commerce or visitors bureau. Many have relocation packets to help you learn what’s in store for your new life.

Working with a buyer’s agent

If you plan to move within six months, it’s time to settle on a Realtor, an agent who can help you with the buying journey in your new location. If you know and trust a Realtor in your current community, they’ll be happy to tap their network and refer you to someone you can trust. A Realtor working for you can help you hone your search and be the boots on the ground to help you scout out that perfect home. Even after doing tons of your own research, a Realtor’s deep knowledge of the community can connect you to that fun, vibrant neighborhood you may have overlooked.

Embrace digital tools

Nothing replaces an on-site visit. The next best thing is a virtual tour accompanied by your Realtor. Whether they’re onsite leading a video chat, or reviewing a 3-D tour, an experienced Realtor working on your behalf can offer their expert perspective on the property (while pointing out any potential pitfalls), so you can feel pretty good about making a decision. In an ideal world, you’d make an offer only after traveling to your new locale to view the property for yourself. If a tight inventory makes that impossible, ask your Realtor about options. The last thing you want is to feel rushed into a decision you’ll regret later.

Streamline your move

A successful out-of-state move is more achievable than you think. A full-service Realtor can help you knock out everything on your list, from booking packers and a moving company, to hiring painters to make your house move-in ready. A top-notch Realtor can take all the guesswork out of moving and make your experience far less stressful. When choosing a Realtor, ask what relocation services they can offer.

Read more about relocating in the Twin Cities. Then, give your relocation a successful start by connecting with Scott Haubrich at today at 612-298-5400.

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