Moving to The Outer Banks – How To & What to Consider

You would love to move to the Outer Banks!  Who can blame you?

I spent the first 24 years of my life as a resident of the great state of Pennsylvania.  Through those years I spent countless weeks on family vacations to the Outer Banks.  It was inevitable, I fell in love with the area much like everyone else who truly appreciates it.

Visits were paced at around 2 per year, and the relationship transitioned from exciting vacations to a strong emotional bond with the Outer Banks.  I would feel empty inside if I couldn’t get to the beach during the year.  As soon as we would get back from one trip we started planning the next.  This is the Outer Banks “bug,” and once you’ve been bitten, there’s no cure except… moving here.

I always knew deep down inside that one day I would live on the Outer Banks, though I didn’t ever guess it would be at the age of 24 and only 2 years out of college.  However, that leads me right into the valuable tips to relocating to the Outer Banks that I would like to share with you.

Moving to the Outer Banks

 

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It’s one thing to want to move to the Outer Banks.  It’s another to make it happen.  You have to be willing to sacrifice time, money, effort, and all that comes with moving far from home in order to relocate here.  You will face unforeseen tests and trials that all need handled appropriately to make your move a reality.  Be 100% committed that you will be moving to the Outer Banks should the opportunity arise.  The chances for it all to work out smoothly may come at a time that you’re not ready for.  You need to jump on any chance that comes your way and take it as your ticket to happiness here!

Relocate While You are Young(er)

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I hate to use the example of my parents, but I will.  For as long as I can remember, it was a true goal for my parents to one day move to the Outer Banks.  They talked about it endlessly with serious considerations and dialog all the time.  The one main hurdle that seemed too difficult to overcome was that of having children established into local schools and social environments.  I really respect their decision to hold off on any major relocation until we all finish college.  My younger brother just entered his sophomore year at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania (Go SRU!) and I’m sure they intend to honor their promise.  The moral of the story is if you can relocate to the Outer Banks before you have any major commitments in your life it will be much easier and timelier.  I have to admit, my parents relish the fact that I moved here and they make any excuse they can to visit me AKA “go on vacation!”

How to Find Jobs at the Beach

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Finding jobs at the beach is tricky.  Most of us don’t live anywhere near the Outer Banks and have to do most of our job hunting from hundreds of miles away.  One of the best ways I found job openings on the Outer Banks was on the internet through websites like Craigslist.  You must be careful not to fall prey to some of the cold-call jobs on there, but Craigslist is a valuable website that many OBX employers will advertise job openings on.  The Dare County Jobs Board is also a GREAT page to bookmark!  I looked at this page everyday as new jobs are added regularly.  I was also very fortunate that my dad gets the local newspapers delivered to PA.  The Coastland Times has a large section of employment opportunities on the Outer Banks inside of it.  With a combination of internet searches and calling in on print ads, I managed to secure my fantastic career that I have today!  Don’t forget to check out Career opportunities with Southern Shores Realty as well!

Outer Banks Jobs

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Here is the tricky part.  Unless you are retired or plan on working from home on the Outer Banks you will need to find a job that matches your skills and background.  As a vacationer here, you should be somewhat familiar with our industries and have a general idea of what jobs are available at the beach.  The truth of the matter is: tourism is king!  A overwhelming majority of the businesses and employment opportunities on the OBX will circle around the tourism industry and include jobs in vacation rentals, restaurants, rental equipment, beach services, etc.  There is a smaller portion of employment in industries like health care, commercial fishing, and other local needs that may align with your background.  The point to take away here is to be flexible with what you are looking for.  Be willing to think about new opportunities that may be just as fulfilling as your current employment.  Also be prepared for changes financially with your Outer Banks job, more often times than not you may have to take a pay cut in order to facilitate your move.  The cost of living relative to local salary scales may make you a little uneasy about doing it, but most who desire to live here make the move to live at the beach, not to make it rich!

How to Find Housing at the Beach

 

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Finding permanent housing or Outer Banks long term rentals can be much like that job hunt.  Most people who are interested in moving to the Outer Banks live in some kind of long term rental for a period of time until they get settled in.  Summer time is the most difficult time to try moving to the Outer Banks as many seasonal workers are in the towns and occupying a majority of the available apartments and homes for rent.  If you can, work on the logistics of your housing at the very same time that you are offered work.  Housing comes and goes fast here so you need to be able to work diligently while keeping as fast as possible!

Outer Banks Apartments

 

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For those moving to the Outer Banks, an apartment rental is the perfect solution to secure housing temporarily while making sure your move is worthwhile.  Most professionally managed OBX long term rentals will require at least a one year lease to be signed.  This secures the rental for you, the landlord, and quite frankly, makes managing them more organized.  There are many benefits to renting from a property manager, like Southern Shores Realty.  Speaking from first-hand experience, having professional managers to get in contact with locally and with dozens of resources and years of experience is quite comforting compared to renting from “some guy” who lives “somewhere” who knows “someone” who can “fix” something… you get the idea!  The cost relative to other markets in the United States is slightly higher for long term rentals on the Outer Banks.  This is mostly driven by the limited supply and enormous demand.  Make sure you get the best for your buck and do consider going to the pros!


I hope that you find this information helpful.  I remember reading as much material as I could on the Internet before my move to the Outer Banks.  Please don’t hesitate to ask any questions in the comment section below.  You have to be brave to relocate to the Outer Banks, especially if you live really far away as many of us vacationers do.

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Enjoy your life, you only get one.  Take chances, they don’t come often.  Don’t ever live all your life wondering what could have happened if you made the move!  I took the chance, and now get to look at this view every night!

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