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7 Things to know and do before moving to Minnesota

Moving within the US
United States Minnesota

Minnesota is a state in the upper-Midwest region of the United States. It’s the 12th-largest state in the US and 60% of its population live in the two stunning metropolises called the ‘Twin cities.’ Minnesota is also known as ‘the land of 10,000 lakes’ as it is home to 11,000 lakes with 90,000 miles of shoreline, greater than that of California, Hawaii, and Florida combined. 

The state offers a wide variety of amenities and outdoor recreational facilities. The job market is also strong and if you can bear the extreme winter season, it’s a great place to move to.

So, if you are considering moving to Minnesota, there are numerous things you need to know and prepare for, like their cost of living or simply how to notify the state of Minnesota of your address change. Here are 7 things you need to know before moving to Minnesota.

Moving to Minnesota: Everything to know and do

What to know before your move to Minnesota

1. First steps before moving to Minnesota

Find a reliable moving company, truck rental or moving container

For your move to Minnesota, you will need to hire a reliable moving company or take on the move yourself. To find the best moving company in Minnesota, look for helpful reviews, a professional-looking website, and years of experience.

Planning a move to Minnesota? Take a look at our selection of:

Finding a job 

As of September 2023, Minnesota had an unemployment rate of 3.1%, which is the highest from 2.8% in April 2023.

Jobs that are often in high demand are taxi drivers, bartenders, and flight attendants.

Finding a job in Minnesota is easier if you search online for job openings. Popular websites for this include LinkedIn, Indeed, and SimplyHired.

US Bureau of Labor Statistics (Oct 2023)

Getting there 

Below are some travel options to get to Minnesota from different parts of the country include:

Flying: Flying is the most convenient way to move to Minnesota. Book a flight from your departure city to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, depending on your destination within Minnesota.

Train: You can also take the train with Amtrak as an alternative. 

Bus: If you want another way to travel, Minnesota cities have bus services like Greyhound, and Flixbus, that can get you there.

If you are flying and require assistance with moving your belongings, you can explore options provided by reputable moving companies.

Must dos before your arrival 

Moving to Minnesota may be exciting and will challenge you in many ways. By knowing these things beforehand, you will be better prepared for your new life in the city.

  • If you are moving to Minnesota permanently, and you receive a lot of mail (excluding packages), you may want to sign up with USPS’s mail forwarding service. Mail forwarding allows your mail to be redirected to the right address for a given period of time. The fee for regular mail forwarding is only a little over a dollar for 6 months. If you want to extend the service, you will have to pay around $20 for 6 months more. You can begin your mail forwarding process by signing up on USPS’s website or directly at your local Post Office.
  • Moving to a new place is an opportunity to start afresh. If you’re moving to Minnesota, selling or donating the items you won’t need will go a long way in making your move easier. You can sell your old household items and personal possessions, and anything that will not be useful. Pick out the items that will not be useful for you in Minnesota, then decide if you want to sell them on websites like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace or donate them to a non-profit organization.

2. Upon your arrival in Minnesota

Must dos right upon your arrival

  • Get familiar with your neighborhood, and make sure to take note of the important emergency numbers.
  • If you roam around the city for work or just simply checking on it, it would be great to purchase a daily pass to save money.
  • Locate the essential facilities like the nearest hospital, police station, and fire department for your safety and in case of emergency.

You can easily get around in Minnesota. There are several options available. 

Exchanging your driver’s license

Once you move to Minnesota, you must transfer your out-of-state driver’s license to Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS) within 60 days (commercial drivers have 30 days). In order to transfer your out-of-state driver’s license, you’ll need to visit your Local MN DVS office in person with the required documents. You will also have to surrender your out-of-state license. When applying for a driver’s license, you should have a valid out-of-state driver’s license and pass the vision and written tests. You will be asked to take the road test if your out-of-state license has been expired for more than 1 year. You can schedule the appointment for a road test online.

Register your vehicle

If you have just moved to Minnesota, you’ll have to register your out-of-state vehicle with MN DVS within 60 days. Failure to do so might result in penalties and additional charges. 

To get your car registered in Minnesota, you need to bring your vehicle title, proof of insurance, odometer disclosure statements and registration fees to your local DVS office. You can register your vehicle in person or by mail. To register your vehicle in person, you need to visit your local DVS office with a completed Application to Title and Register a Motor Vehicle (Form PS2000) and other documents.

You can also follow the same procedure and mail it to your local DVS office.

Change your address

Along with mail forwarding, you will also have to update your new address with the concerned authorities in Minnesota, like the DMV. To exercise your right to vote in Minnesota, you can register to vote online, by mail and in person. 

To register by mail, you need to fill out the Minnesota Voter Registration Application. Using the same application form, you can register to vote in person at your local county elections office OR at the polls on Election Day.

Changing your address with your employer, bank, doctor, insurer, and service providers so that you can avoid any complications further down the road.

Setting up a bank account 

Obtaining a bank account in Minnesota is a straightforward process. You only need to present a copy of your valid state or government-issued ID, such as a driver’s license or passport. The bank with most branches in Minnesota for easy access is Wells Fargo Bank. Minnesota’s residents has access to a whopping 133 offices of Wells Fargo Bank in the state.

Getting health insurance

Getting health insurance is an excellent way to get peace of mind when it comes to your health. With health insurance, you will not have to worry about spending a ton of money in case of a health-related emergency. The state of Minnesota proposes a website to help you with your health insurance search. Simply choose Minnesota as your state and create an account.

Type of healthcare

Cost

Employer-sponsored health insurance

$124.16

Non-employer-sponsored health insurance

$449.00

Gym

$96.86

Numbeo (Oct 2023) & EHealthInsurance (Oct 2023)

3. Best places to live in Minnesota

Best places to live in Minnesota

If you are a couple, you might want to consider living in Edina. It offers an urban feel, good housing, a thriving nightlife, a diverse culture, and a lot of amenities.

If you are a family, you might want to consider Shorewood. Shorewood offers good housing facilities, some highly rated public schools, and it’s a great place to raise a family. 

If you are single, you should consider moving to Minnetonka. Minnetonka has a lot of great educational institutes. This is the reason a lot of young professionals live here. In addition to this, there are plenty of coffee shops and restaurants.

Setting up home services 

Setting up essential home services like electricity, water, and internet in Minnesota is a straightforward process. 

  • Minnesota Public Utilities Commission is responsible for regulating utility services such as electric power, natural gas, and water companies in Minnesota. You can visit their website and search for water, electricity, and gas providers and even reach out to them if you have any inquiry. 

Should you rent or buy?

The average Minnesota home value is $330,406, increased by 0.70% from 2022. Minnesota’s price per square foot to buy an apartment outside the center is $362.00.

Finding an apartment for rent in Minnesota is easy, utilize websites like Zillow, Apartmentguide, and Apartments.com. When seeking a house, these websites—Zillow, Realtor, and Century21—will assist you in your search for a home in Minnesota.

Cost of rent in Minnesota

Area/Neighborhood

1-bed apartment

3-bed apartment

Minneapolis (Outside of Center)

$1,190.50

$2,103.75

Cost of buying a property in Minnesota

Area/Neighborhood

Average home price 

Minneapolis

$330,406

Numbeo (Oct 2023)Zillow (Oct 2023)

Consider getting home insurance

Getting home insurance is essential, whichever state you are residing in. Minnesota experiences sunny and warm summers, but there is always a risk of severe weather. Home insurance is a kind of financial protection that will cover for your expenses if a natural disaster damages your home. Residents in Minnesota are at a risk of hailstorms, blizzards, flooding, tornadoes and wildfires.

4. Cost of living in Minnesota

Category

Monthly cost

1 bed apt rent outside city center

$1,190.50

Groceries

Numbeo’s grocery list ($61.88 multiplied by 4)

$247.52

Utilities

Electricity, heating, cooling, water, garbage

$182.60

Internet with 60 Mbps

$65.19

Transit pass

$83.00

Entertainment 

Meal, taxi, movie

$107.50

Gym membership 

$96.86

Total

$1,973.17

Numbeo (Oct 2023)

5. The weather in Minnesota

On average, there are 195 sunny days per year in Minnesota. The highest temperature in Summers is 81° and the Winter low is 2 degrees. Minnesota averages 47 inches of snow per year and 29 inches of rain. Residents of Minnesota experience harsh winters. 

The people who live in the far north can experience temperatures as low as -60 degrees. However, summers in Minnesota are mild and pleasant. A perfect time to relax at the lake and spend quality time with your family outdoors. In addition, fall will bring to you; vibrant colors and breathtaking views.

6. What to do as a local in Minnesota

After you are done settling into your new home in Minnesota, you will probably want to familiarize yourself with the state and all its attractions. Some of the most popular activities and locations in Minnesota include:

Minnehaha Falls – One of the most popular and oldest parks featuring river overlooks, limestone bluffs and a majestic 53-foot waterfall.

Mill City Museum – Tour, dining, shopping and history, an all-in-one experience.

Split Rock Lighthouse – Visit the historic buildings, the lighthouse and enjoy the scenic view.

Some common grocery stores in Minnesota are: Aldi, Trader Joe’s, and Rainbow Foods.

The two most popular big chain stores are Target and Costco.

Must-visit food places in Minnesota are Mickey’s Pizza & Subs and Sage on Laurel.

Visit the popular cities in Minnesota: Minneapolis, Saint Paul, Duluth, and Rochester.

7. Fun facts about Minnesota

  • Fun Fact #1: Target began in Minnesota.
  • Fun Fact #2: There is more than 90 000 miles of shoreline in Minnesota.
  • Fun Fact #3: The stapler was invented in Spring Valley, Minnesota.

Conclusion

Minnesota stands out with its outstanding educational institutions, highlighted by the University of Minnesota, offering a wide array of academic programs. Its natural beauty, including numerous lakes, forests, and parks, caters to outdoor enthusiasts. It has the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, a popular destination for camping and canoeing. 

While moving to Minnesota has its pros and cons, checking the cost of living is essential to making sure you will live comfortably in this city and call it home. It’s a good idea to research specific neighborhoods within the state and consider your priorities to determine if Minnesota is the right fit for you and your family.

Need a trusted moving company for the area? Discover the 5 best movers in Minnesota. 

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Ann Nacario

The author

Meet Ann – our head writer with a knack for making moving and city living a breeze. From the many details of moving to picking the perfect moving company, she’s your guide. Ann has a friendly yet detailed approach to ensure your move goes off without a hitch. When she’s not writing about relocation, it will always be on her mind, but you’ll catch her spending time with her three furry friends.

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