Settling In: How to Acclimate to Your New Community

By Natalia Wolting  • Jan 31, 2024

Settling into a new community as a remote worker can be both exciting and challenging. From figuring out the lay of the land to meeting new people - acclimating to an unfamiliar community can feel overwhelming initially. But getting your bearings sets you up for an easier transition. Here are some tips to make setting into your new community easier for both you and your family.

Research Healthcare Providers

One of your priorities when moving to a new community should be finding reliable healthcare providers. Ask for recommendations from new neighbors, coworkers, real estate agents, or anyone familiar with the area. Online review sites also offer insight into finding doctors, dentists, optometrists and specialist practices accepting new patients. According to the Pew Research Center, 72% of internet users have searched for health-related information online so be sure to check out patient reviews and ratings to gain insights into the experiences of others. Additionally, check that your current health insurance plan covers providers in your new location. Understanding your coverage can save you from unexpected expenses and ensure that you have access to the medical services you need. If you don't have health insurance, explore local options and consider enrolling in a plan that suits your needs.

Once you’ve established who your new providers are, have your medical records transferred to ensure continuity of care. Identifying the nearest hospitals and urgent care centers will also provide an additional layer of reassurance.

Establish a Support Network

Building a support network is crucial for acclimating to a new community. Reach out to neighbors, local community centers and religious institutions to meet people, establish connections and get involved in the community. For households with kids, ask about summer camps and enrichment offerings through local recreation facilities. Attend events or social gatherings to foster relationships and start building your social circle in your new community.

Explore Community Amenities

Community amenities like libraries, parks, trails, recreation centers and pools vastly improve quality of life. Search online city/county websites and maps to discover what’s available near your new home. Many communities offer fitness classes, cultural events, and outdoor activities that can help you engage with others while enjoying your hobbies. Remote workers relocating to Perry County, Indiana can qualify for one year of free gym membership at Everbody’s Fun and Fitness Gym.

21,000 square feet of workout space at Everbody's!

Familiarize yourself with local businesses, restaurants and shops. Supporting local establishments not only contributes to the community's economy but also provides you with a sense of belonging. Attend farmers' markets to connect with local vendors and discover unique products and services.

Get Involved in Local Activities

Active participation in local activities can significantly enhance your sense of belonging. Check out community calendars for information on festivals and gatherings. Participate in neighborhood associations to stay informed about community developments and initiatives. Some communities like Noblesville, Indiana offer newcomers the opportunity to have Coffee with the Mayor.

Volunteering is another effective way to integrate into your new community. Many non-profit organizations are constantly looking for helping hands and contributing your time and skills can be a fulfilling way to connect with others while making a positive impact. Remote workers looking to relocate to Kosciusko County, Indiana can learn more about qualifying for having a “Seat at the Table” at community non-profit events.

Stay Informed and Adapt

Keep up on local news, policies and any changes that may affect your daily life. Subscribe to local newspapers, join community or neighborhood social media groups and attend town hall meetings to stay in the loop. Understanding the dynamics of your new community will empower you to adapt more seamlessly.

Be open to trying new things, embracing local traditions and adjusting your routines as needed. Flexibility and a positive attitude can go a long way in making your transition smoother and more enjoyable.

Tour the Town

Wander through your new community and stop by mom-and-pop boutiques, cafes, unique neighborhood stores and major retailers. Many small business employees live in the same community they work in and relationships with local business owners and staff can lead to insider tips and feeling at home faster. Snap photos of interesting architecture, art installations, historic markers and signs to research later and spark future outing ideas.

Cerulean Restaurant in Winona Lake in Kosciusko County

Plug into Public Services

Make the rounds at the local post office, police department and public transit stations. Meet personnel face-to-face while handling necessities like updating your mailing address, acquiring city parking permits, or purchasing metro passes. Building rapport with city workers simplifies resolving any issues later.

Immerse Yourself

Joining hobby-based clubs, special interest groups, recreational sports leagues and associations in tune with your lifestyle helps you form community connections faster. Attend informal gatherings like craft nights and book clubs or participate alongside like-minded locals giving back, like through a volunteer gardening initiative.

Committing to your new community takes concerted effort but the return on investment is huge through enhanced happiness, health and social connectivity. Spend ample time exploring neighborhoods, mingling with neighbors and going with the flow. Remember that the process takes time, so be patient and proactive in your efforts to integrate into your new surroundings. As you embrace the opportunities and experiences your new community offers, you'll feel more at home in no time.

About MakeMyMove

Remote work has freed millions of Americans to live where they want, and many are making the move to places that better match their lifestyle. In turn, cities and towns across the country are offering incentives like cash, perks and programming to remote workers who move and work from their communities. At MakeMyMove, you can explore all the places, get personalized help to find the one that’s right for you, connect with locals, and access support to make your move a piece of cake.