Tips for negotiating a relocation package

You have a great job opportunity, and you are excited to take it. There is just one problem. Accepting that offer will require you to relocate. But anyone who has experience with moving knows that relocation is not easy or cheap. How do you ensure you get the right support from your employer to take the leap? In this guide, you will get tips for negotiating a relocation package. Also, you will make the job opportunity worth the move.

Businessman carrying boxes
A good relocation package for a smoother transition.

What does a relocation package include?

Keep in mind that there is no such thing as a “standard” relocation package. Most relocation packages include some or all of the following:

  • Home Finding – A paid trip to the new location to find a future home suitable for your family. Including transportation and hotel costs.
  • Home sales or home buying – The costs of selling your home and buying a new home are usually included in relocation packages. Expenses like closing costs, real estate commissions and taxes.
  • Job search help – Some employee relocation packages include job search assistance for your partner.
  • Transportation – Companies may pay travel expenses to employees who have to move to their new location. With the train, automobile, or airplane.
  • Shipping or transporting belongings — Boxes, moving trucks, shipping costs, etc.
  • Temporary living — Some relocation packages will provide you with temporary housing in your new city. Instead of expecting you to find a permanent place to live.
  • Moving – The cost of a moving truck and other expenses. See moving costs-calculation tips.
  • Full pack and unpack – When the company completely covers the expenses and logistics of the move. Movers will pack up your household goods. And then they will transport them to your new home. There they can unload, and in some cases unpack, the boxes where you wish. In case you are packing by yourself see how to save space when packing clothes for a move?

Tips for negotiating a relocation package

Focus on your interests

The whole point of negotiating for something is to address your real needs. Before you define what you ask for, make sure you know what you want. Think broadly and do not limit yourself to financial expenses. Once you have thought about what help you need, you can prepare for negotiating a relocation package. The one package that suits you.

Find out what assistance is typical

Your preparation for negotiating a relocation package should include:

  • Ask your new employer’s HR department if the company has a written relocation policy. Or if it offers standard benefits.
  • Find out who at the company has recently moved. Then ask them about their relocation packages.
  • Ask your friends or other contacts in similar firms about their experiences. Or their companies’ policies.
  • If you are using a recruiter, he should be able to provide guidance as well.

Keep in mind that companies tend to vary in what they offer. And larger companies have more standardized policies. Therefore, compensation can vary by industry, city or even position in the company. Executives tend to get more. But, these expenses are usually covered:

  • Moving costs. You can see the moving cost-calculation tips.
  • Temporary lodging costs.
  • Travel costs back home if you relocate before your family moves.
  • Job search assistance for the partner. Which may include job search payments, referrals to a recruiter. And also arranging for interviews inside the company.
  • Assistance in selling your house.

Develop ideas that benefit both sides

Many companies are negotiating a relocation package that addresses their new employees’ different needs. No matter about the standard. Even though everything is negotiable, your employer is more likely to agree to your ideas if they benefit the company as well. So anticipate this reality, and provide the advantages for your new bosses when you share your ideas.

Money
Talk about ‘equalization’ when negotiating a relocation package.

Maximize your earnings

If you’re moving to a place where the costs of living are high, you need to talk about ‘equalization’. Especially when negotiating a relocation package. Your company, of course, wants to keep the costs down. But it should offer at least equal compensation once local factors are taken into account. Factors like:

  • Local cost of living
  • Taxes – Whether paid in your host or home country
  • Social welfare – Like the cost of personal insurance or medical costs
  • Currency fluctuation
  • Financial obligations in your home country while you are abroad
  • Accommodation and other benefits, if you are funding these yourself
  • Hardship allowance – Not all destinations are equally acceptable. In that case, companies are sometimes obliged to offer a premium. They do that to tempt employees to go to certain locations.

Taxes

Did you know that some parts of your relocation package may be considered taxable income by the IRS? Do not hesitate to ask your employer about this. Also, take it into consideration when you are in the process of negotiating a relocation package. You may also want to consult a tax professional when preparing your return.

People shaking hands in the office after negotiating a relocation package
Negotiating a relocation package with your employer.

Get it in writing

You and the company have agreed on a compensation package for your relocation expenses. Now make sure you have that agreement in writing. A formal contract is not necessary. You need just a simple signed letter detailing the assistance that is being provided and by what time. A negotiation about relocation compensation is the same as any other negotiation. Focus on effective preparation, collaborative negotiating and out-of-the-box thinking, and you will do well.

Maintain your sanity

Starting a new job is always an adventure. But starting a new job and moving to a new home can be overwhelming. Also when choosing the movers, keep an eye on red flags for moving scams. This way you will avoid unnecessary stress and focus on your career path.

In conclusion

Negotiating a relocation package does not have to be scary. The market favors job seekers right now. So, you’re in an excellent position to use this information to your benefit. By taking advantage of these seven tips, you can make a smoother transition to your new job. And also concentrate on completing the whole process.

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