The Pros & Cons Of Moving Across The Country Vs. Moving Across Town

At this time last year, I was making the longest move of my life so far: from Portland to Nashville. This afternoon, I’m making the shortest: our new place is about two miles from this one. After moving across the country, I assumed this move would be a breeze. I mean, a two-mile move is obviously going to be easier than a 2,400 mile move, right? Right?! Well, not necessarily. We were talking to a friend about it the other day and he summed it up perfectly: “The thing about close moves is that you think it’s no big deal, so you procrastinate, don’t really pack, and then the day of, you’re just cramming shit in garbage bags and throwing it all in the trunk of your car.” The garbage bags full of fragile items that are strewn all over my house right now are proof of this statement’s accuracy. Sigh. So how does a close-in move compare to a massive move? Let’s break down the pros and cons of each…

Pros Of Moving Across Town:

  • If you forget something, you can just go back and get it.
  • You have a bunch of friends on hand to help you pack/move.
  • You can still drive by your old place when you’re feeling nostalgic.
  • Your moving truck rental will be, like, $30.
  • You can learn new routes to your favorite haunts instead of having to learn a whole new city.
  • Your friends will still be in the same area code.
  • You know where the closest Bed Bath & Beyond is.
  • Two words: housewarming party.

Cons Of Moving Across Town:

  • The exploration process is not super exciting — “Oh look! I’m two minutes closer to the grocery store I’ve been going to for 5 years!”
  • It feels like a change, but not a huge change.
  • Anything you didn’t like about your city is still a problem.
  • You aren’t putting thousands of miles between you and that toxic friend.
  • You have to keep all your old furniture, since there’s no excuse to buy new stuff.
  • You won’t take the move seriously, and sorting through all those unlabeled bags of stuff when you get to your new place is not fun at all.

Pros Of Moving Across The Country:

  • You know it’s a big deal, so you plan out your moving process with militaristic precision.
  • You get a fresh start, especially if you’re moving to a city where you don’t know anyone.
  • It’s a great excuse to sell all your stuff and buy new things you like better.
  • You’ll get much needed distance from crazy family members.
  • You get to play tourist in your new city.
  • It’s a huge, exciting life change that often sparks other huge, exciting life changes.
  • It feels like a true adventure.
  • That whole “running away from your problems” thing? Sometimes it actually works.

Cons Of Moving Across The Country:

  • Selling your favorite lamp because it won’t fit in your car = sad.
  • Saying goodbye to your best friend = SADDEST.
  • If you don’t sell all your stuff, you’ve gotta shell out thousands of dollars for a moving truck or service.
  • You have to sign a lease sight unseen or crash on someone’s couch while you look at apartments.
  • There’s no one to help you unpack when you get there.
  • As if moving weren’t enough work, you also have to find a new doctor, hairstylist, cell phone plan, cable provider, and maybe — gulp — a new job.
  • You don’t know where anything is and often get lost on your way from the drugstore to your house.

Anything I missed? Add to my lists in the comments!

[Photo via Shutterstock]