You’ve always wanted to live in a friendly town with connections to nature – but you also need amenities and career opportunities. After a thorough search, you decided on Grand Rapids Michigan because it ticks all the boxes and then some. Great choice! Now it’s time to find a residence, gear up for the big move, and take the plunge. Here are some tips to help you get settled.

Finding Property in Grand Rapids

With very low vacancy rates on rental properties in Grand Rapids, you might want to consider buying instead. To find the right area to suit your family’s needs and your budget, your first step is to find the best real estate agent based in the city. Local know-how will help you to track down a good match. Think about the things you need from a home, for example, proximity to schools, as well as the character of the area you’d choose to live in. The better the specifications you give, the better the chance of your agent finding the ideal home for you.

Finding Your Way Around Grand Rapids

If you’re used to streets that follow a basic grid pattern, you might find navigation in certain areas of Grand Rapids rather confusing. That’s particularly so near the river, where the street plan follows the sweeps of the river’s course. Use your GPS to navigate until you get used to it – believe me, you’ll grow to love it. Downtown is quite compact so you’ll soon get used to finding your way around. The bus system is also very good, and you can ask the driver for help if you’re not sure of the nearest stop to your destination.

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Schools in Grand Rapids

There’s no shortage of excellent public schools in Grand Rapids. If you’d prefer a private school for your children, there are definitely many good options too. However, it’s worth noting that several public schools receive top rankings based on everything from academic performance to the range of extra-mural activities offered. As for colleges, you’re likewise very well served – and having your college student living at home is a huge saving. In Grand Rapids, your child is guaranteed great educational opportunities from preschool all the way through to graduation.

Employment Opportunities

Unemployment in Grand Rapids is very low, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t jobs to be had! It’s a great place for job seekers of almost every kind. Medical fields and education are big employers in the city, but there’s plenty to do in manufacturing, and of course, wherever there are people, multiple service industries provide everything they need. Regardless of your line of work, there’s almost sure to be an opening to suit you, and getting a job is likely to be a case of “sooner rather than later.”

Get Geared for Four Seasons

Since you did your homework, you probably know that Grand Rapids does every season to the full. We’re talking about dramatic swings from winter chill to summer heat with spring flowers and autumn colors to herald the coming of the two extreme seasons. Locals love it. They’re equally ready for fun on the beach in summer and playing in the snow in winter. Make sure you are too. Get your wardrobe kitted out with the warmest of winter woolies and the flimsiest of summer clothing so that you can make the most of the seasons too.

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Grand Rapids is Friendly

There’s one more thing you ought to prepare yourself for. On the whole, Grand Rapids is a friendly city. If you’re not used to people smiling at you in the street as you pass, or greeting you when you’re just browsing in their stores, you might be in for a surprise. Be ready to smile back and take the time for the occasional chat with a stranger. It’s one of the best things about Grand Rapids, and it’s one of the reasons why you’ll soon feel right at home.

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Danor Aliz is a lifestyle journalist who enjoys writing about everything luxury. Her favorite subjects are luxury travel and everything that has to do with fashion. In her spare time, she loves to paint and also enjoys her time walking her dog Daisy.