You’ve landed a dreamy promotion — better pay, a step in the right direction towards your long-term goals, and an amazing office space that just… happens to be in another city, hundreds of miles away. Job relocation isn’t generally top on the list of “things I hope happen to me”, but it can be an amazing opportunity when the time is right. When sitting down to look at your next steps, there are likely some things you didn’t realize you could negotiate. Here are some things to consider negotiating with your employer before you get the moving process started to make it all go smoothly and in your best interest.
Location scouting trip
Before the big move, ask your employer to sponsor two or three trips to your new city to scout out housing options and explore the lay of the land. Where is your office in relation to your potential housing? If you have a family, what are the school systems like in different parts of the city? You can certainly also use this time to visit your new office and get to know your co-workers, but be sure there is plenty of time to look around.
Particularly if your company is asking you to move with a relatively short timeline, you can negotiate for them to provide short-term housing while you find a more permanent solution. This is a great opportunity to get a month or two rent-free and save for a security deposit if you’re renting, or a downpayment if you’re looking to buy a new house. It’s also really helpful if you haven’t been able to sell your current home yet.
Whole house pack & transport
If your company already has a relocation package, read the fine print — and be prepared to negotiate for more support if it isn’t up to the job. Questions to ask before relocating: does it only cover the transport of your possessions, or will it pay for packing as well? What about art items, your piano, your wine collection? Will they cover packing these items? Find out what your company is already planning to cover, and take your negotiations from there.
Because it will probably take a little time to settle into your new home and new city, you can request that your company pay for storage for your belongings until you’re ready to move it all in. You may move into temporary housing for a little while, or just need some time to get rid of some of your belongings that don’t fit — either way, having the option for a storage unit will eliminate some of the pressure to get everything organized so quickly.
Cash stipend for incidentals
Although you’ve tended to your relocation checklist and have covered all of your bases, there are bound to be incidentals that crop up during your corporate relocation. A storm hits and adds another night at a hotel along the way — will they cover that expense? Which brings us to…
Lump sum vs. Reimbursement vs. Direct billing
In short, if your company pays you a lump sum in advance for your relocation, you will be taxed on it. Most companies will default to providing that money pre-tax, but if you make your case, they may be willing to put that money through payroll so the taxes have already been taken out. Alternately you can use the reimbursement method, saving your receipts along the way. Most companies will give an expenditure limit if this is the case, so be sure you’re tracking your expenses. Or? They may choose to do all the hiring and payment for you, using contractors they have worked with before. However, you negotiate the payment, be aware that there are pro’s and con’s to each — and make the case for the one that suits your situation best.
Now that you know how to negotiate relocation for a job, be sure to hire top-notch long distance movers to make the experience smooth and easy!