How to Find a Job in a Different State

So, you’ve decided to move to a new state. Maybe you know exactly where you want to live or maybe you’re still exploring your options. There’s a multitude of reasons that people job hunt out of state.

Whatever your reason for moving may be, you’ll have bills to pay once you get there so securing a job ASAP is in your best interest.

Necessary steps to take when job searching in a different state

  1. Check out the job market

Scan job sites like to get a sense for where there are job openings in your field. If there’s a high demand for your skill set, your chances of landing a job are greater.  

Researching an area’s job market before moving there lets you know what to expect. If there aren’t many jobs in your preferred field, you may want to look elsewhere.


If you know people in the area, ask them if they can connect you to anyone in your desired field. Building professional relationships with the right people can lead to opportunities so that you don’t have to rely on just your amazing resume.

Use social media to your advantage when you’re searching for a job out of state. Connect to businesses and professionals in your industry using these platforms.  

Platforms that you can use to network include

  • Linkedin – A tool for professionals to connect with other professionals and business around the world.
  • Twitter – A less formal medium that allows you to stay current with business and potential employers.
  • Facebook – You can use Facebook to browse job openings and join groups and pages related to your field.
  • Mention relocation in your cover letter

Employers generally prefer hiring local, so if they see an out of state address and no mention of relocation, your application will likely be tossed in the pile of ‘no’s.’

Mentioning relocation in your cover letter lets job posters know that you’re committed to moving, giving you a better chance at getting hired.

You need to use your cover letter to catch the recruiter’s attention and explain briefly why you’re planning to move to their city. Above all, you need to sound like you’re 100% positive that you’re moving.

If you know when you’re moving, put something like “Relocating to Austin in June 2020.”

  • When you snag a phone interview, explain why you want to move there

According to a recruiter, some of the best reasons for relocating are having family and friends in the area, or that you’ve been to the city multiple times and have decided that it’s where you want to build your future.  

You don’t want to sound like you’re doing this on a whim or that you may back out if another opportunity presents itself. Present your decision to move with confidence.

  • If it’s possible, pay for your own relocation

Companies prefer to hire local for a lot of reasons, one of the big ones being that they’d rather not pay for someone’s relocation. You can mention that you plan to cover relocation costs in your cover letter.

Still not sure where you want to move?

A 2018 GoBankingRates study crunched the numbers to find the cities with the highest pay and lowest cost of living.

To determine this, GoBankingRates compared average annual income to average monthly living expenses for each area, taking into account median rent prices, groceries and utility bills, using data from Zillow, Numbeo and the U.S. Census Bureau.

Here are the top five U.S. cities with high wages and a low cost of living according to GoBankingRates

  1. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Average annual income: $72,385

Median monthly rent: $1,070

  • Kansas City, Missouri

Average annual income: $69,301

Median monthly rent: $1,092

  • Lexington, Kentucky

Average annual income: $77,827

Median monthly rent: $1,215

  • Phoenix, Arizona

Average Annual Income: $73,135

Median monthly rent: $1,296

  • Durham, North Carolina

Average annual income: $74,401

Median monthly rent: $1,341

A 2019 WalletHub study compared all 50 states across 33 key indicators of job-market strength, opportunity and a healthy economy.

Here are the top five U.S. states to find a job according to Wallethub

  1. Massachusetts
  • Washington
  • Colorado
  • Vermont
  • New Hampshire

After you’ve done your research and perfected your cover letter and resume, it’s time to find your dream job.

At Colonial Van Lines, we’re here to help with the heavy lifting of moving, so that you can focus on landing the perfect job.

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