Career Guide

Tips on Negotiating Relocation Benefits: How to Ensure That When You’re Moving On, You’re Also Moving Up

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A colleague called recently to tell me about an out-of-state position she’s been offered. Delighted about the opportunity, she planned to accept the offer the next day.

“Congratulations,” I replied. “What’s the housing market like there? Are they paying for your moving expenses?”

“Gee, I don’t know,” she said.  “I didn’t think to ask.”

With moving expenses easily running $10,000 and up, this is most definitely something to address in your negotiations.

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a job offer in another city or state and overlook some of the practical aspects of relocation. The following are tips on things to consider when you review job opportunities that involve a move:

  • Negotiate moving expenses as part of the offer and be clear on what’s included. Will the movers pack your household? Will your employer cover the cost of storage if there’s a delay before you can move in to your new home or apartment?
  • Ask your prospective employer to arrange for a realtor to show you apartments and/or homes so you have an idea of the housing market in your new location. A friend who moved from Madison, Wis., to the north shore of Chicago was stunned to learn the cost of a home would triple from his previous experience.
  • Inquire about whether your employer can assist you with getting a preferred mortgage rate. Some companies have relationships with local banks and can help you get a better rate than is available to the general public.
  • If you own a home, will your new employer buy it if you are unable to sell it? This is definitely a perk in the current real estate market.
  • Consider the above negotiation items to be like your salary and vacation time, so don’t bring them up until the end of your interview process when you’re discussing the financial aspects of the job.

Jenny Schade, president, JRS ConsultingBy Jenny Schade, president, JRS Consulting. JRS Consulting helps organizations dramatically increase attraction among customers and employees. Jenny Schade has interviewed more than 1,000 employees while guiding organizations through turbulent change. Get more tips from the free JRS newsletter.

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Jenny Schade

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