7 Things to Know and do When Moving to New Mexico (2024)

1. First steps before moving to New Mexico

Find a reliable moving company, truck rental or moving container

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

Planning a move to New Mexico? Have a look at our selection of the 5 best moving companies in Albuquerque.

Finding a job

In June 2023, New Mexico gained 7,300 jobs, making it one of the top job gainers among all states. On average, over the past year, the state added approximately 3,300 non-farm jobs.

Jobs that are often in high demand are food servers, caregiver, medical assistant, and bartender.

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

KRQE News (Oct 2023)

Getting there

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

Flying: Flying is the most convenient way to move to New Mexico, and some international airports in New Mexico are the Albuquerque International Sunport and the Santa Fe Municipal Airport.

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

Bus: If you want another way to travel, New Mexico 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 New Mexico 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’re moving to New Mexico permanently and expect significant mail (excluding packages), consider USPS’s mail forwarding service. It redirects your mail to your new address for a specified time. The initial fee for regular mail forwarding is slightly over a dollar for six months, extendable for about $20 for an additional six months. Start the process by signing up on USPS’s website or at your local Post Office.
  • When moving to New Mexico, sell or donate what you won’t need to simplify your move. Sell or donate household items and personal belongings that won’t be useful. Decide if you want to sell them on sites like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace, or donate to a non-profit organization

2. Upon your arrival in New Mexico

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 New Mexico. There are several options available.

NMDOT Park and Ride – You can use the intercity bus and shuttle service.

American Public Transportation Association – See the AMT’s website for all the ways to get around New Mexico.

Exchanging your driver’s license

Once you move to New Mexico, you must transfer your out-of-state driver’s license as soon as possible. There is no grace period provided as per the law. In order to transfer your out-of-state driver’s license, you’ll need to visit your local MVD office and submit the documents outlined in applying for a NM Driver’s License Page. You will also have to surrender your out-of-state license. You can also schedule an online appointment to skip the lines at the MVD office.

Register your vehicle

If you have just moved to New Mexico, you’ll have to register your out-of-state vehicle with MVD as soon as possible. To get your car registered in New Mexico:

  • For out-of-state vehicles, you’ll be asked for a vehicle identification number for an inspection, this service is provided by most MVD field offices. Before you begin the registration application, take your vehicle to a state-approved VIN Inspection station.

Change your address

Along with mail forwarding, you will also have to update your new address with the concerned authorities in New Mexico, like the DMV. You can change your address by email, fax, mail, or in person at an MVD office. You will need to fill out and submit the Change of Address form at an MVD location.

To exercise your right to vote in New Mexico, visit your local county clerk’s office and fill out the voter registration form. You can also submit a completed Voter Registration Application and mail it to the office of the New Mexico Secretary of State (SOS).

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 New Mexico 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, military ID, or passport. For convenient branch access in New Mexico, you may check the New Mexico Bank & Trust, it is the state’s largest regional bank with $1.7 billion in in-state deposits, as reported by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

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 New Mexico proposes a website to help you with your health insurance search. Simply choose New Mexico as your state and create an account.

Type of healthcare

Cost

Employer-sponsored health insurance

$147.75

Non-employer-sponsored health insurance

$457.00

Gym

$51.00

Numbeo (Oct 2023) & EHealthInsurance (Oct 2023)

3. Best places to live in New Mexico

7 Things to Know and do When Moving to New Mexico (1)

If you are a couple, you might want to consider living in Rio Rancho. It offers a rural feel, a thriving nightlife, good housing, a diverse culture, and a lot of amenities. A lot of young professionals live here.

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

If you are single, you should consider moving to Santa Fe. Santa Fe offers a lot of amenities, a booming job market, a diverse population and plenty of outdoor activities. This is the reason a lot of young professionals live here too.

Setting up home services

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

  • New Mexico Public Regulation Commission is responsible for the regulation of electric, natural gas, renewable energy resources, and water and wastewater systems. They ensure that consumers are provided with accessible, safe, and reliable telecommunication and energy services at reasonable rates. You can visit their website and search for electricity, water, and gas providers and even reach out to them if you have any inquiry. The main purpose of PRC is to keep the customers well-informed regarding the services they are getting from the utility providers.
  • When it comes to a high-speed internet connection, there is a wide variety of options to choose from in New Mexico, including cable, DSL, Fiber and Satellite. The best internet providers in New Mexico will have bundling options, various speeds, and multiple package options at reasonable prices.

When setting up these services, ask about setup fees, installation timelines, and contract terms to avoid any unwanted charges. Additionally, look for special offers or bundles that could save you money by combining internet, cable TV, and phone services.

Should you rent or buy?

The average New Mexico home value is $292,341, increased by 3.4% from 2022. New Mexico’s price per square foot to buy an apartment outside the center is $326.33.

Finding an apartment for rent in New Mexico 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 New Mexico.

Cost of rent in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Area/Neighborhood

1-bed apartment

3-bed apartment

Albuquerque (Outside of Center)

$1,311.75

$2,447.86

Cost of buying a property in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Area/Neighborhood

Average home price

Albuquerque

$292,341

Numbeo (Oct 2023)&Zillow (Oct 2023)

Consider getting home insurance

Getting home insurance is essential, whichever state you are residing in. It is a kind of financial protection that will cover for your expenses if a natural disaster damages your home. Residents in New Mexico are at a risk to numerous small land spouts, tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, flash floods and hailstorms. Therefore, getting home insurance is a must.

4. Cost of living in New Mexico

Category

Monthly cost

1 bed apt rent outside city center

$1,311.75

Groceries

Numbeo’s grocery list ($64.83 multiplied by 4)

$259.32

Utilities

Electricity, heating, cooling, water, garbage

$217.34

Internet with 60 Mbps

$93.00

Transit pass

$60.00

Entertainment

Meal, taxi, movie

$113.75

Gym membership

$51.00

Total

$2,106.16

Numbeo (Oct 2023)

5. The weather in New Mexico

On average, there are 278 sunny days per year in New Mexico. The highest temperature in Summers is 88° and the Winter low is 20 degrees. New Mexico averages 24 inches of snow per year and 15 inches of rain. New Mexico has the loveliest summers and springs.

New Mexico is known as the ‘Land of Enchantments’ as it’s famous for its colorful scenery and breathtaking views. You will get to enjoy sunny and warm weather in summers without humidity. Fall will bring to you different shades of crimson and gold, you’ll be awed by the view.

6. What to do as a local in New Mexico

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

Sandia Peak Tramway – Take the scenic route and enjoy the view of the Sandia Mountains.

White Sands National Monument – One of the greatest natural wonders of America.

Rio Grande Gorge Bridge – This bridge was built in the 1960s and is the highest suspension bridge in the country.

Common grocery stores in New Mexico include Sprouts Farmers Market, Trader Joe’s, and Albertsons.

The two most popular big chain stores are Sam’s Club and Costco.

Must-visit food places in New Mexico are the Frontier Restaurant and El Pinto Restaurant.

Visit the popular cities in New Mexico: Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Las Cruces, Roswell, and Rio Rancho.

7. Fun facts about New Mexico

  • Fun Fact #1: It’s home to the Capulin Volcano from where you can view potions of five different states: Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas, Texas, and Colorado.
  • Fun Fact #2: It is the hot air ballooning capital of the world.
  • Fun Fact #3: It is also known as the ‘Land of Enchantments’.

Conclusion

New Mexico’s culture is a blend of Native American, Hispanic, and Anglo influences, creating a diverse and vibrant atmosphere, evident in its art, cuisine, and traditions.

While moving to New Mexico has its pros and cons, checking the cost of living is essential to make sure you will live comfortably in this city and call it your home. It is important to research job opportunities, the climate, and your preferences to decide if it suits your lifestyle.

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

7 Things to Know and do When Moving to New Mexico (2024)
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