Relocation Tips Nigerians Should Consider

  | 10 min read

Relocation Tips for Nigerians at Home and Abroad

In as much as moving from one home to another within the same state or different locations could be challenging, there are things you should consider when moving. The relocation tips in this article can make a world of difference in your next relocation undertaking.

Relocation offers an opportunity to experience new things, to have a change of environment, meet new people and start over again. Hence, it is advisable to look into some details about where you are moving to before calling it a home.


If you ever consider relocating to another city or you’ve just been transferred from your workplace, you should research and know what the cost of living is. Also, what are the possible challenges you might face when you move to the new base?

Relocation, if not well planned, can result in a gaping hole in your pocket. We have, therefore, come up with relocation tips that not just help you save money, but also make the move convenient here in Nigeria.

Here are some factors you should put into consideration before moving:

Housing Cost

The cost for apartments and homes varies from one location to another. As a person seeking accommodation, you might be lucky to find yourself in a city where you don’t have to go through too much rigour to get an affordable apartment.

If you are fortunate enough to work in a corporate establishment and you are looking to get a mortgage in such a setting, it is necessary to look out for the best deals and go for the one you can afford. Keep your accommodation plans realistic and avoid budgeting for housing options that you have not done your research on.

Essential Needs

Homeowners tend to bear other costs apart from that used in acquiring the house in the new city they are moving to. Expenses like the basic useful things needed on a daily basis, health care, transportation, electricity, security and foodstuffs amongst others.

All these costs shouldn’t be more than your estimated monthly cost for the new area. It should be something you can afford on a monthly basis without any hassle.

Don’t go shopping in a hurry

When relocating, you should take your time to settle in and unpack your things before you begin shopping for things you need. Rushing to the store should not be your priority. Instead, calm down, unpack all your things and then find a way to set up your new place without dashing to the store.

Better still, as you unpack, you should take a mental note of things you might need to buy later but don’t do it immediately you move in.

The idea is to avoid spending more than necessary on things you do not necessarily have to get. The only kind of shopping that you should indulge in would be for food items and medications.


If you are moving into a serviced apartment, you might want to sell off your generator instead of going through the stress of carrying a power generating set that you might never have to use. If you do not have one, better for you.

However, in a country like Nigeria where the power supply is epileptic, owning a generator is not considered a luxury.


Use a Food Flask

Instead of buying breakfast, lunch and dinner on the big day you are scheduled to move, you could opt for packing breakfast and lunch especially if you’re driving. You will save some money and you really don’t want to eat so much as to become uncomfortable. However, if you’re flying, we do not advise you pack any meal of any kind.

Request for Help

Are you relocating for personal reasons or strictly because of a job? If it is for the latter, we suggest that you request help from your new employer. Some organisations offer some sort of support system for new employees who are relocating to a new town. In some cases, if you do not ask for help, you will not get it.

Job Offer

If you are relocating on personal terms and not for official reasons, it is advisable to look for a job in the new city before moving. Several cities have numerous job opportunities, and it may not be long before you land a job opportunity whilst majority of cities are plagued with high unemployment rates. Some cities are hubs for some industries and may not have a lot of job offers.

Do your research so you don’t end up unemployed for too long in the new city.

A Different Culture

When relocating, always remember that you are moving to a new place where people are bound to see and do things differently. For instance, if you are relocating from Nigeria to Japan, you should be prepared to work for longer working hours. In Japan, it is not unusual to find employees working 60 hours weekly despite the labour law marking it at 8 hours daily.

This issue of overwork has been serious enough to birth a phenomenon in Japan known as Karo-shi (death from overwork). As a Nigerian, this is something you should take into very serious consideration. This example is from Japan. Endeavour to do your research about whichever country you are relocating to. It gives you a mental picture of what to expect, what the realities are and helps you manage any effects of culture shock that you may suffer.

Dedicate some time to understanding what the etiquettes of the people are – what is their attitude to time? What form of greeting do they respond best to? Are they a little conservative or very conservative? The more answers you find to questions like these, the better for your relocation plans.

Are you Riding Solo?

If you are planning to relocate, one of the key things to factor into your plan is whether you are in a relationship or not, as well as the kind of relationship you are in.

If you are single and in a serious relationship, you might want to have a detailed conversation with your partner or what your plans are for the future of the relationship. Is he/she planning to relocate in the near future as well? Can you handle a long-distance relationship? Are you both planning to settle down in the same city in the future. All these would have to be considered.

If you are married or with children, you would also have to work around whether your family would be relocating with you or if you plan to do that in the near future.

If you plan to relocate your family, you would want to look at the unemployment rate in the new place. This is because if your family is moving with you, you would have to look at the possibility of helping your spouse secure a job. Your children’s tuition would also have to be discussed.

Distance to Place of Work

When relocating, one of the biggest relocation tips to hold close to your chest is the distance of your new place to where you work. This affects so much that it should never be taken for granted.

For instance, it determines how much you spend on a weekly and monthly basis on transportation. You don’t want to spend 80% of your income on transportation to work and back home. That would be a disaster.

Another thing is that the farther you live from work, the higher the chances of getting to work late. Truth is, if you keep getting to work late, you might eventually lose the job.

Size of New Apartment

Before you even pay for your new apartment or home, you should consider how big or small you want your place to be. If you are a bachelor, getting a 4 bedroom apartment might not be wise as you are bound to have a lot of empty rooms.

However, if you have a family, then you should ideally get a place that would be befitting. You shouldn’t for instance, cram a family of 6 into a mini flat.

Still primed to make the best of your decision to move out, below is a quick checklist that you want to run through to ensure a wonderful relocation.


Relocation Best Practice

  • List Out Everything: You should draw up a list of everything you are packing. This might seem like a lot of work but it would be worth it at the end. Label each box that you have packed. This helps you know what is inside each box you have packed without necessarily opening each one. This save time and helps you know specifically where each item is.
  • Settle All Bills: Ensure all bills are settled at your old place to avoid carrying over old bills into your new place. Take some time to sort this out.
  • You Need a Budget: This relocation tip is incredibly crucial as it helps you set aside money for moving. It also ensures you understand when you are about to exceed your budget for the relocation.
  • Keep It Clutter Free: Don’t fall into the error of moving things you have borrowed along with you to your new place. Return borrowed items like books, DVDs, gadgets and cancel membership to clubs that you will no longer be in need of. You don’t want to be moving things you are bound to trash shortly after you complete your relocation. Sell off things you no longer need and raise some spare cash.
  • Update Your Accounts: If you have bank accounts tied to your old address, we suggest you visit the bank to update this. Same applies to updating your address for all memberships and your mails.
  • Mark Out Landmarks and Important Places: You would want to know which supermarket, church, Mosque, mall, gas station, bank, ATM, pharmacy, hospital and school etc is closest to your new place.
  • Moving/Relocation Means: Will you be hiring any service or do you plan to go through the entire relocation yourself with the help of friends and family. You must make a decision on this and keep it on your checklist.  
  • Plan For New Utility Bills: You will have to make concrete plans for utility bills like your pay TV, electricity, garbage disposal and others at your new place.
  • Notify Insurance company: If you have an insurance policy, you should notify them of your change of residence.
  • Voltage: If you are relocating outside the country, then you want to be sure of the voltage that goes into your devices. In some countries, it is 110-120V while in others, it is 220-240V. Never take this for granted or risk damaging your appliances and gadgets.


Relocation Works Best When Planned

As you proceed to relocate, it is important to keep your plans affordable and realistic. Have a long-term budget and be sure not to overshoot it.

Also, consider if your language and communication skills are aligned with the culture of the people where you are relocating to.

If you have a family, be sure to take your spouse’s ability to get a job and your children’s needs like education and lifestyle into consideration.

If you are looking to get a new job where you are relocating to, you would be better off if you do make plans for that ahead of your relocation.

Have you ever had to relocate?

How did it go?

Samod Biobaku
A Nigeria-based writer and blogger who has written and edited for top brands including The SUN, Punch, Newswatch,, Bigsam Media, Nigerian Bulletin, Swish Interativ, Hello Nigeria, National LIFE, iCampus, Jobberman and Cheki.