Altered State

Kyle McIntosh

IN A RECENT POST, I suggested three questions that folks should consider before moving out of California. As a California native who has lived many other places, I appreciate the weather and convenience of living here, and I urged others to think carefully before moving away.

The post generated some great discussion when I shared it on my Facebook page. Based on the comments left by my friends, here are some added considerations and tips for those thinking of leaving California:

  • Take a test drive. One friend shared how she and her husband rented their California home for the past two years, while staying in short-term rentals in other places. That provided them with a low-risk way to try out several different U.S. locations for their future retirement. What they found is that they don’t want a true four-season climate because they like to exercise outside each day. They’ve decided to relocate to California’s Central Coast, while visiting some of their favorite “test drive” spots when those locations are “in season.”
  • Consider politics. Another friend shared that her parents heavily factored in local political views when selecting a retirement destination. This situation reminded me of a person I met over the summer who was relocating from Seattle to Texas strictly for political reasons. While it’s a shame we’ve become such a polarized country, you’ll likely be happier with your new destination if you consider the political views of the locals before making a major move.
  • Prioritize and compromise. One of my onetime athletic coaches shared that he and his wife have agreed that, if they move out of California, they need to have enough land for either a pool or a goat. Each is passionate about one of the two, but they don’t see a scenario in which they can have both. This seemed like a good compromise: The one who misses out of his or her dream will at least get to enjoy the other’s happiness.

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