How To Feel At Home In A New City

Author: Harmony Sense Interiors Ltd. |

Vancouve, Canada skyline

Relocating to a new city is an exhilarating but destabilizing experience involving a lot of planning and adjusting to new circumstances. In that sense, it is pretty normal to feel nervous in the face of change. As everything probably feels strange, intense, and unfamiliar, you might not perceive your new house as your home. The entire situation can become extremely overwhelming, compounded with the pressure of having to close the purchase of your home as well as unpack and decorate the new home as quickly as possible. But, don't worry. You can do many things to make yourself feel at home in a new city.

Meet people with similar interests and hobbies

You will feel more at home in a new city if you have a friend or two with whom you can spend your free time. Of course, this takes some time - people don't become friends out of nowhere. Therefore, it will be much easier to befriend someone with whom you share a common interest. So, even if you do not typically pursue a hobby that you can do in a group setting, this is the time to do so.

For instance, if you are into fitness, look for a running club or a yoga class to complement your current training regime. If you are (not) an avid cook, perhaps a cooking class or a public garden might bring along a few acquaintances. The sky's the limit. It can be a language course, an art class, a book club, or a boxing team. Creating a specific routine around an activity that will allow you to meet like-minded people will make you feel less of a stranger in a new city. 


Cooking class people eating food from a bowl
Join a class to meet people who share your passions.


Make your home as welcoming as possible

It is not just the city itself that might feel strange and isolating. Moving to a new home can also harbor feelings of uncertainty and detachment as you may perceive it as an unfamiliar, and thus, unwelcoming area. This happens to many new homeowners during the transition between their old and new homes.

That is why it is constructive to make your new place feel as cozy and stylish as possible. If you cannot pinpoint what is missing, you can consult an interior designer who can help you decide what kind of furniture styles and color schemes you gravitate towards. 

a cozy living room with blue walls and painting
Making your home feel cozy and welcoming will help you adjust to living in a new city.


You can do this even before the move so that you know what kind of furnishings to buy and what items you already own to discard. Particularly if it is a long-distance move in Canada, it's crucial not to relocate the bulkiest items only to throw them out later. Long-distance relocations are costly, and if you move less stuff, you pay less. Hence, if you plan to relocate across the country, make sure you find a reliable moving crew that will be able to wrap up the relocation quickly so that you can focus on making your new home feel as homely as possible. 

Be adventurous

After you settle into your home, it is time to explore what the city has in store. Many people tend to bottle up when faced with novelty. And it’s perfectly natural - after all, you probably don’t even know your way around the city. But, all it takes is a little bit of curiosity to make your fear of the unknown go away. Ask around or research which sights and landmarks you ought to visit. 

After exploring the city and its history, you can seek adventure by visiting a few bars, museums, concerts, or cultural events. These activities will help you make a few lovely memories if you have a significant other. Consequently, you feel connected both to the city and to each other. If you plan to move alone, do not hesitate to go out and do these activities on your own. As much as it may seem strange, it is easier to meet new people and get into the fun and unpredictable situations when you do not already have a fixed group of friends.

a man exploring a new town, showing how to feel at home in a new city
Embrace the city, and the city will embrace you back. Explore the new environment so you feel at home in a new city.


Invite a friend over for a visit

It might seem counterintuitive, but you might feel more at home in a new city after a visit from a friend or a family member. Spending time with people you love in a new town will evoke the warm feelings you attach to your hometown. After all, feeling at home is more about the people and activities you enjoy than anything else.

Also, if you still haven't announced to your friends and family that you are moving, when you do so, you can invite them to come over and visit you for a couple of days after the move. It will be easier to tell people you are close with that you are moving to another city if you already make plans to see each other. In that way, you will diminish the blow this news might give. 


Moving to a different city will most likely bring about feelings of uncertainty, especially in the beginning. The critical notion to remember is that it will take some time before you finally find your rhythm in your new environment. However, try to set that aside and immerse yourself in your new life and local culture. In fact, the first year living in a new city will probably be a year of intense adjustment in which you will have to be determined but also gentle with yourself. However, soon enough, you will feel at home in a new city. Just take your time and enjoy the process.