You probably hear the phrase “moving your career forward” a lot. Usually, the “move” part of that is just a metaphor. But, sometimes reaching your full potential sometimes requires something more literal … like an actual move.

But relocating can be an intimidating process. Not only are you taking on a new job (already a major stressor), but you have all the anxieties related to the physical move.

Here are some tips to make finding (and thriving in) a job in another state:

Find Someone You Know There

Networking plays a role in most job searches. This becomes critical as you look outside your immediate surroundings. Even in the world of easy global communication, your contacts will tend to cluster in a few (or even just one) geographical area.

Being able to have a contact in your intended new home town helps smooth the process. Not only can they help you find a job, along the normal networking ways, but they can help you transition to your new city.

Visit First

Moving to Hawaii may sound ideal. Until you discover you are allergic to the plant life there and break out in hives every time the flowers blossom.

Don’t assume you’ll like a place or you’ll “work out the details later.” Visit a location before you commit to a position. That way, you know if it is worth the commitment of relocating.

Keeping Cost of Living in Mind

You might have a gorgeous house in a swanky suburb of Des Moines. However, the salary that lets you afford that mansion in Iowa won’t buy you much in Manhattan or Silicon Valley. Keep that in mind as you’re weighing your options.

Don’t compare salaries on a dollar-to-dollar basis. Look at what you can buy with the money (there are plenty of online cost-of-living calculators available). A move might come with a nominal raise, but misjudge the costs and you could end up losing spending power in the long run.

Be Honest About Having to Relocate

Eventually, you need to have an honest conversation with your prospective employer about the fact you’ll have to relocate. This can sometimes be a tricky discussion.

Some companies are reluctant to look at candidates who would have to move to take the position. Often, you can use your cover letter to address the issue. However, you may want to wait until you’ve gotten further into the process before bringing it up (no need to throw up red flags too early).

Whenever you decide to bring up the conversation, stay upbeat and don’t show uncertainty. Even if you have some anxieties about making the move, as far as your potential future employer is concerned, you are excited to relocate and would welcome the challenge.

Looking to find the perfect job in a new city? A recruiter is a great way to get started. When you’re stepping outside the area you’re familiar with, a top staffing firm, like SmartTalent, can build a bridge to your dream location.

Contact SmartTalent today to learn more.