You're Hired! 6 Do's and Don'ts of Negotiating a Relocation Package

June 05, 2018

Tips for Negotiating a Relocation PackageYou've finally received the job offer of your dreams! There's only one catch: it's in another city, or maybe even a different state. Is it worth the trouble and expense of finding a new home and moving yourself, your family and your possessions hundreds of miles away?

Don't let geography stand in the way of your career or what’s best for your family. Many companies offer relocation assistance ranging from a flat fee to a comprehensive program.

Here are some tips to help you negotiate the best relocation package possible.

Do Your Homework

You probably did some research on the company before deciding you wanted to work there. Now it's time to do a little more investigating.

  • Check with the human resources department to see if the company offers a formal relocation package.
  • Ask about other employees who have moved recently and find out what assistance they received.
  • Network with family, friends and social media to get an idea of what's being offered at other companies. According to a survey by Allied Van Lines, the average relocation package is $21,000 — from a low end of $5,000 to a high end of $50,000.

Don't Make Assumptions

Does the company provide a limited relocation package, or maybe none at all? This isn't the end of the road. Relocation packages can be negotiated just as salaries, benefits and other job perks are.

Do Make a Wish List

It's difficult to negotiate when you don't know what you're asking for. Give serious thought to what's involved in your relocation and what kinds of assistance will ease the transition.

Be sure to think beyond the actual moving process itself and consider other expenses that will be incurred with relocation. Do any of these items apply to you?

  • Child care subsidies
  • Assistance with a spouse's job search
  • Additional vacation time to visit family
  • Cost-of-living allowance
  • Storage fees

The broader your range of "wants," the more flexibility you have to negotiate.

Do Make It a Win-Win Situation

Companies know that happy employees are productive employees, and having a reputation for treating people right makes them more attractive to job seekers. But they're still a business that has to justify expenses.

Show how relocation assistance will benefit both of you. For example, explain how you could begin work at an earlier date if you have temporary housing.

Don't Accept the Job Without a Relocation Package

Once you commit to a job offer, you lose your best negotiating leverage. And, if a company doesn't care enough to assist you up front, chances are they don't treat existing employees well either.

Do Get It in Writing

Contracts are intended to protect and bind both parties to an agreement. Don't worry about offending anyone by asking to have the relocation package documented and signed.

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